A soccer player at a New York City Catholic school was pronounced dead on Monday, shortly after he was injured during an in-game collision. The death was announced publicly on Wednesday.
As reported by the Associated Press, among other sources, Thomas Jakelich died of a lacerated liver following a collision with a player during his Loyola School team’s game against the United Nations School. The collision, which occurred during a game on Randall’s Island, was believed to be a normal contact incident without any significant risk, but Jakelich’s family said continued concern over his symptoms after the game motivated a trip to the hospital, where he was immediately sent to the ER to stem his internal bleeding.
Within hours he was gone.
“As a school community, we mourn the tragic loss of Thomas Jakelich and offer our prayers and deepest condolences to his family,” Loyola School President Tony Oroszlany said in a statement to the press. “Out of respect for the privacy of Thomas’ loved ones and that of our students, we offer no other comment beyond our profound sadness at the loss of a beloved member of the Loyola School family. ”
Jakelich’s death is believed to be the first of the 2015-16 school year directly attributed to a soccer injury. Seven teenagers have died from football related injuries suffered on the field during a game or practice. The tragic nature of Jakelich’s final actions wasn’t loss on his friends.
“He was determined. He wasn’t shy,” childhood friend Niko Goutakolis told the Wall Street Journal. “The one thing he really liked, playing soccer, ended up hurting him. That was really sad.”