Kent State freshman Tyler Heintz has died. According to the Record Courier, Heintz died following a workout with the Kent State football team on Tuesday. He was 19.
Record Courier reports that a cause of death has yet to be determined, and that Heintz will subsequently undergo an autopsy on Wednesday, June 14th. To learn more about the college freshman, his life, and the details surrounding his mysterious death, here are five fast facts you need to know.
1. He Was Part of the Golden Flashes’ 2017 Signing Class
Heintz was part of the Golden Flashes’ signing class of 2017, which handed out 22 scholarships to 19 high school seniors and two juniors from around the country. Heintz hailed from Kenton, Ohio, where he attended Kenton High School at and played offensive tackle on their football team.
According to ESPN, Heintz signed with Kent State in February of this year, and was planning on studying marketing and entrepreneurship in Kent State’s college of business administration.
He arrived on campus for the first time this week, where and the other freshman were said to be taking summer classes and getting an early start on practices. Tuesday was the second official day of summer workouts for the Golden Flashes.
2. He Was Unresponsive When Paramedics Found Him
Record Courier reports that Heintz had been participating in football conditioning at Dix Stadium on Tuesday morning, when he suddenly collapsed sometime around 9:00 a.m. Firefighters were immediately called to Dix Stadium and found Heintz unresponsive when they arrived at 9:18 a.m.
He was rushed to the hospital, where the Akron Beacon Journal reports the physicians worked on him for two hours “without success.” He was officially pronounced dead at 11:34 a.m.
According to Cleveland.com, off-season football workouts are “only lightly supervised, are held without pads, directed by upperclassmen, and per NCAA rules have limited coaching supervision.”
3. Kent State Released An Official Statement Regarding Heintz’s Death
Though Heintz’s death occurred early Tuesday morning, Kent State did not release their official statement of confirmation until 9:30 p.m. It was released on their team website, and you can read the statement in its entirety below:
Today, the Kent State University family mourns the tragic loss of one of our student-athletes, freshman football player Tyler Heintz. Tyler was transported to a local hospital by paramedics this morning following football conditioning drills at Dix Stadium. The cause of death is not yet known.
Tyler was from Kenton, Ohio, and planned to study marketing and entrepreneurship in the College of Business Administration. Tyler was recruited as a rising star on our offensive line.
Our heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with Tyler’s family and friends, as well as Coach Haynes and the team, our athletics staff and our student-athletes.
4. A Cause of Death Has Yet to Be Determined
The cause of Heintz’s death is currently unknown. Dr. Dean DePerro, the physician who attempted to save Heintz, told the Record Courier that his body is being transferred to the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner’s office, where an autopsy is scheduled to be performed Wednesday.
“The post-mortem is just one piece of the puzzle,” he explained, “That takes time.” Investigators are currently in the process of collecting hospital records, gathering reports of any medical history, and interviewing any players who was with Heintz at the time he collapsed.
DePerro said that given these variables, the conclusion of Heintz’s autopsy could take up to several weeks to determine.
5. Coaches & Players Paid Tribute to Him on Social Media
Though he was never able to officially suit up with the Golden Flashes, several of Heintz’s peers in college football took to social media to paid tribute to him. “I want to send my condolences to Tyler Heintz’s family and the Kent State football team,” wrote Anthony Christian, who plays for the University of Rhode Island.
“Live it up in Heaven man @TylerHeintz” added Hunter Phillips, who previously attended Kenton High School with Heintz.
Heartbroken parent Ronnie Reed tweeted out “Heartbreaking! Prayers for Heintz family,” while Eric Spicer sent a heartfelt message to his former classmate: “Tyler Heintz was one hell of a kid. I’m blessed to have had him as a friend. Life is way too short. Don’t take it for granted. Love ya, man.” Notre Dame football coach Mike Jacobs also send his best to the young man’s family.