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Athletic Trainer Helps Save Collapsed Football Player

Andy Berg

The importance of having trained athletic trainers at practices and games was again demonstrated this week, this time on the football practice field at Madison (Miss.) Central High School.

When Madison Central sophomore tight end Jack Houston collapsed during a routine practice Tuesday afternoon, athletic trainer Josh Hardin was on the scene and immediately jumped into action.

“He tells us what to do and we do what he tells us to do and that was the situation with Jack,” Jaguars head coach Anthony Hart told WJTV. “Josh cut the shoulder pads, the different things that he asked people to do, we did it. And with his direction, we were able to make a bad situation a lot better.”

For his part, Hardin praised local first responders for their quick arrival at the practice field.

My fire rescue, EMT guys from Madison, Madison Fire department — they were literally just finished responding to a call and were on their way back to the fire station, which is not far,” Hardin said.

Following tests at the hospital, Houston’s doctor’s found reduced heart function and believe the cause is likely a condition he was born with or the result of a viral infection 

Hardin said he still questions how he can improve his response in emergency situations and was relieved when he got word that Houston was going to be alright.

“There’s still that moment of what if,” Hardin said. “Could I have done something better? Could I have changed the outcome? And when you finally get the word, hey they’re waking him up, he’s responding to visual cues, he’s responding to audible cues and then he’s talking. That’s a big deal.”

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