A 14-year-old Florida student has died after going into cardiac arrest during a Junior ROTC athletic event on Saturday.
Knox MacEwen collapsed at a 5K run during the program’s fitness challenge, which was attended by hundreds of military cadets at Everglades High School in Miramar, according to WPLG-TV in Miami.
Police said paramedics administered CPR at the scene before a fire rescue squad transported MacEwen to Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood, where the young man was later pronounced dead.
Jimmy Arrojo, the principal at Western High School in Davie, Florida, emailed school families Saturday, informing them of the incident, the Miami Herald reported.
“I am saddened to share tragic news impacting our Wildcat community,” Arrojo wrote. “One of our JROTC students passed away this morning after being transported to the hospital.
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“I want to offer my deepest condolences to his family and loved ones, teachers, and classmates as they mourn this great loss. I ask our Wildcat community to rally around the family in prayer and support during this time of deep sorrow.”
Arrojo said grief counselors would be available on campus this week “to meet with anyone needing assistance or support.”
A GoFundMe appeal was created “to help with funeral expenses, and to allow Knox’s parents, Kevin and Julie, to take some time off of work to grieve,” organizer Lauren Milam wrote of the event in which her friends “suddenly and tragically lost their beloved 14-year-old son, Knox.”
“He was a revered member of his local community – a JROTC student, a volunteer with the kids ministry at his home church; and he was a beloved brother, son, grandson, nephew and friend.
“This family has been through the unimaginable, as this has happened as Knox’s mom, Julie, is still physically and financially recovering from a hard fought battle with cancer this last year,” the appeal explained.
“Any gifts will go directly to the MacEwen family, and are deeply appreciated.”
In a related Facebook post, Milam added, “Kevin and Julie are incredible, humble, hardworking people who I am blessed to call friends.”
“While no amount of money will take away their pain, it is my hope to alleviate some of the financial stress as they mourn their sudden loss.”
She added a request for well-wishers to “Please pray for Kevin, Julie, Grayer and Campbell today.”
As of Wednesday afternoon, the appeal had brought in more than $82,000, well beyond its $30,000 goal.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.