Officials are investigating after a 16-year-old basketball player from Chicago mysteriously collapsed during a tournament at Riverside Brookfield High School Saturday.
Witnesses said the boy had just completed a layup when he suddenly collapsed and stopped breathing on the basketball court. When officers arrived, they found the boy in full cardiac arrest and not breathing, according to a release from the Riverside Police Department.
A nurse from Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn attending the event at a different court began administering CPR after she and an off-duty doctor from CGH Medical Center heard commotion coming from the court.
The teen, who was playing for Christ the King Jesuit College Preparatory High School, was transported to Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood where he was admitted to the pediatric intensive care unit and listed in critical condition.
Police said the gym was rented out to an outside vendor to host the Team Rose AAU Shootout tournament. There were six basketball games going on at the time of the incident, police said.
“The Riverside Police Department’s 911 Center was flooded with 911 cell phone as hundreds of spectators had witnessed the juvenile collapse and immediately dialed 911 on their cell phones to report the situation,” the release said. “The scene was extremely chaotic as parents, attendees and others were screaming and crying that the boy died.”
Police said the victim’s parents were not at the scene at the time of the collapse. An investigation is ongoing, officials said.
Police credited the off-duty doctor and nurse for their actions at the game.
“There is no question that the immediate response of the off-duty doctor and nurse played a crucial role in the fact that this young man is still alive,” Riverside Police Chief Thomas Weitzel said in a statement.
Police did not release the name of the boy because he is a juvenile.