16 year old collapses, dies during football practice

Raymond Tindle; Photo from KFVS12.com
Raymond Tindle; Photo from KFVS12.com

NEW MADRID, MO (KFVS) - The cause of death is still unknown for a 16-year-old student athlete who died after collapsing during football practice Wednesday morning.

Raymond Tindle, 16, of Lilbourn collapsed during practice.  He was taken to a Sikeston hospital where he was pronounced dead, according to New Madrid County Coroner Jimmy McSpadden.

McSpadden says the cause of death is "100% unknown," according to the medical examiner.  It could be four to six weeks before they find out what happened on the football practice field.

Practice has just started and Tindle was running with the team when he collapsed about 8:40 a.m.  He has just started running, so according to his teammates the workout was not very vigorous at that point.  Teammates say the coach administered CPR will waiting for the ambulance to arrive.

"We were out there running and he was about 15 feet in front of me or so and he just kinda collapsed and I thought he just got tired or something," said Shelby Comer, one of Tindle's teammates.

An autopsy was performed Wednesday afternoon in Farmington.

School superintendent Bill Nance calls the death "very tragic."  He says his heart goes out to the family. 

Tindle did not play football last year.  It was the third day of regular season practice for the football team.

The school is in the process of working with the team and offering counseling to coaches and players.

Nance says this is a "big tragedy to family, school and community. A very sad day for everyone involved."

Tindle, whose friends called him "Sullivan", would have been a junior at New Madrid County Central High School this year.  His teammates say the first football game scheduled for August 21 and the entire season will be dedicated to Tindle.

The death is under investigation, but is not considered suspicious, according to New Madrid County Terry Stevens.  The sheriff says the investigation is standard procedure with the death of any juvenile.

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