A 17-year old soccer player died over the weekend while training with his team in California, according to the Los Angeles Times. The team was practicing while temperatures reached 111 degrees in Southern California. Shane Thomas, a student at Palisades High School, was found unresponsive by his teammates. Emergency services arrived on the scene but could not revive Thomas after administering CPR.
"Today, God took my soul from me, my best friend. I'm numb inside," Thomas' sister Cheyenne Thomas wrote on social media after his death. "You didn't deserve this, but you passed right after doing what you love, playing the beautiful game." Cheyenne also wrote that Thomas was "genuine, focused, receptive, responsible, loving." She also stated that Thomas was "perfect" and she "couldn't have asked for a better brother. My only brother, my other half."
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According to CBS Los Angeles, Thomas Collapsed at 12:15 p.m. on Saturday and was transported to the Chino Valley Medical Center, where he died at 1:13 p.m. A final determination on the cause of death will not be known until an autopsy is complete. Erik Hallak, a longtime trainer at St. Francis High School, said no one should have been playing or practicing due to the heat.
"There was an extreme heat warning," he said. "You were not supposed to be outside doing any kind of activity that day. It was just exceptionally hot." A GoFundMe page has been set up for Thomas and has raised over $36,000 in three days.
"A young 17 years old boy who was doing what he loved [soccer] before his passing," the description on the GoFundMe page stated. "Shane was determined, hardworking, graceful, smart and all-around a beautiful soul. He touched the lives of so many and it's our turn to give back to his family in their time of need. We are raising money to cover the costs of the funeral and memorial services for Shane's family as this passing was completely unexpected."
Thomas was an All-City soccer player who scored 19 goals last season and set to be the team captain this year. Palisades head coach Marvin Lemus told the Los Angeles Times: "I know he was training, doing what he loves best. "He was really excited for this season."