Natalie Dreier, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
LINCOLN COUNTY, W.Va.
A family in West Virginia is mourning and looking to make a change at their local soccer fields after their 8-year-old son died suddenly at soccer practice.
The first practice of the soccer season had just finished Thursday when Caleb Ray told his dad he wasn’t feeling right, WSAZ reported.
“He told me, ‘Daddy I can’t see,” Ryan Ray. “He fell and started convulsing a little bit. I yelled over there to call an ambulance and everybody came running over and Kristy and I performed CPR on him until the ambulance arrived.”
Kristy Ray told WSAZ that Caleb didn’t have any signs of medical issues. He had a heart murmur as a baby and asthma, but nothing that would have caused a sudden death.
“You don’t think it’s going to happen to you,” Kristy told WSAZ. “You hear about it happening a million miles away to somebody else, in another state, you don’t know the situation. You never think it’s going to happen to your kids or even anyone you know.”
The Rays now want to make sure that children are given a physical before sports, but also to make sure that all sports fields have defibrillators available. One wasn’t at the fields last week.
They are also getting their daughter checked out before she hits the playing field again.
“We don’t want her to do anything strenuous until we get a cardiac workup on her. We’re scared. We’re scared it’s going to happen again. The chances are probably slim, but if it’s any chance we don’t want to take it,” The Rays told WSAZ.
The family has been receiving donations after Caleb’s death, WSAZ reported. They will be using it to buy defibrillators for the teams in their area and they’re working with lawmakers to make sure that all games and practices have the lifesaving devices.