Viera lacrosse player fighting for his life after cardiac arrest

VIERA, Fla. – A Viera High School student collapsed Monday after experiencing cardiac arrest, Brevard County School officials said.

School officials said the teen collapsed while he was running laps outside during ROTC class.

The school's head football coach and the ROTC instructor helped administer CPR and use a defibrillator on the teen.

Coach Derek Smith talked about helping the boy before emergency responders arrived.

"Basically, he went limp and fell to the ground," Smith said. "After the second electrical shock, the heart was restarted."

He was taken to Nemours Children's Hospital in Orlando where he is in critical condition, Brevard County school officials said.

Brevard and Space Coast lacrosse groups are asking for area lacrosse teams and their families to keep the student and his family in their thoughts.

A post on the Space Coast Elite Lacrosse page encouraged people to show support for the player as Viera High School's lacrosse team plays Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Hawks Stadium.

A GoFundMe fundraiser has been set up to help cover Seeley's medical costs.

This is the second time in three years a Viera High School student has suffered cardiac arrest.

Shawn Sima's daughter was 16 when she suddenly had a heart attack while running on a treadmill in 2016.

"We're extremely upset. It sort of draws up some old memories for us," Sima said, reacting to the latest incident.

The more recent memories for the Sima family are happy ones.

Thanks in part to the family's activism, CPR training is now mandatory for Brevard County high school students.

The family's push to mandate all Florida high schoolers learn CPR continues at the Capitol.

Sima said he's working with lawmakers in Tallahassee and since Monday, he's also called the hospital to support the boy and his family.

"They're very overwhelmed right now. We're going to try to be there for them because we've been there," Sima said.

Colin Seeley's ROTC teacher Tim Thomas said that he saw the sophomore collapse.

"It was just a jog. Wasn't anything real strenuous we have done in the past. Just a really light jog and about half way through that he went down," that Thomas. "When I rolled him over, he was already turning purple and it was just a light pulse. 

Thankfully Thomas said that someone ran to get their AED. He said he after several minutes he was able to get a pulse.

"One of the students web to grab one of the AEDs while we were waiting on them. We got them down and we were doing the compression chest massage," said Thomas.

Thomas also said that he spent most of Tuesday at the hospital with Seeley's family.

About the Authors:

James joined News 6 in March 2016 as the Brevard County Reporter. His arrival was the realization of a three-year effort to return to the state where his career began. James is from Pittsburgh, PA and graduated from Penn State in 2009 with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

Troy graduated from California State University Northridge with a Bachelor's Degree in Communication. He has reported on Mexican drug cartel violence on the El Paso/ Juarez border, nuclear testing facilities at the Idaho National Laboratory and severe Winter weather in Michigan.