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  • A&M Player that died

    [A&M Player that died]

    Author: Martha (---.28.109.12.cablerocket.net)

    Date: 11-26-02 04:23

    Its been six months since I was diagnosed with HCM and quite a learning experience for me and my whole family.

    Yesterday, my daughter called to tell me about the A&M football player that

    died from " a genetic heart problem" that had been undiagnosed. It broke

    my heart. My daughter just graduated from A&M in August so it hit her

    really hard, but got her attention as far as the importance of having regular

    check-ups with an echo. Just think, if this guy had, had just one echo, it

    could have saved his life!!!

    Lisa, thank you and your staff for all they do!!!!

    Martha

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Allen Bates (---.motorola.com)

    Date: 11-26-02 07:12

    http://espn.go.com/ncf/news/2002/1125/1466458.html

    Monday, November 25

    Updated: November 26, 11:14 AM ET

    Fails' family had history of heart problems

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Associated Press

    COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- A family history of heart problems may provide a clue into the sudden death of Texas A&M defensive lineman Brandon Fails, Aggies coach R.C. Slocum said.

    Fails died Monday morning after complaining to his roommate of breathing problems. Fails had no history of heart problems, but his father survived a heart attack at age 32 and his grandfather also had heart problems, Slocum said.

    "The doctors are speculating that it was a heart condition,'' Slocum said in Tuesday's editions of the Austin American-Statesman. "He had a very faint pulse rate at the dorm.''

    An autopsy has been scheduled.

    Like all freshman players at A&M, Fails was given a complete physical before reporting for football practices Aug. 5. But echocardiograms, which produce an ultrasound picture of the heart, usually are not included, and a source familiar with the case said Fails was not given one.

    Those who knew Fails said he will be remembered as friendly freshman with a frequent grin and a bright future at Texas A&M.

    "He was a young, talented young man who I thought had a chance to be an outstanding lineman for us,'' said defensive line coach Buddy Wyatt. "He was a bubbly kid. I don't think he ever ran into anyone who wouldn't remember his smile.

    "He'd only been here two months, and over at Cain Hall everyone knew him. You could see the grief on everybody's face to find out that he had passed away,'' Wyatt said.

    Fails died at St. Joseph Regional Health Center in Bryan after collapsing in his Cain Hall dorm room.

    Fails played in four games this season before undergoing knee surgery Oct. 22. He would have been a starting prospect for next season.

    Fails' roommate, freshman tight end Patrick Fleming, told Slocum that Fails collapsed as the two players prepared to leave for breakfast in the dorm cafeteria.

    "He was fine. He was at practice yesterday afternoon. He did not practice. He was recuperating from knee surgery early in the year,'' Slocum said.

    Fleming told Slocum he and Fails had been to dinner with a friend Sunday evening without any problems.

    Slocum informed the player's parents, Charles and Valerie Fails of Euless, of their son's death.

    "Any time you get in a situation like this it dramatically points out what is really important,'' Slocum said. "You are sitting in a room with a mother and father and telling them their son is dead. Everything else pales by comparison.''

    Slocum called off Monday's practice but planned to return to workouts Tuesday to continue preparations for Friday's game against Texas.

    It is the second time in four years that the Texas-Texas A&M game has been marked by tragedy. On Nov. 18, 1999, a 59-foot tower of logs being prepared for the traditional A&M bonfire collapsed and killed 12 people and injured 27.

    After hearing of Fails' death, Texas officials canceled Monday night's hex rally, an annual pregame ritual before the game against the archrival Aggies.

    "Our hearts go out to the family and to the Texas A&M staff and players,'' said Texas coach Mack Brown. "We understand their pain.''

    One of Brown's players, Cole Pittman, died in a February 2001 car crash.

    Fails attended Colleyville Heritage High School in the Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District last year. Fleming and Fails were high school teammates before coming to A&M.

    The 6-foot-1, 307-pound Fails was voted Class 5A Defensive Player of the Year by Associated Press Sports Editors last season. He was a first-team All-State selection by the APSE and the Texas Sports Writers Association.

    In his senior season, Fails registered 36 tackles and five sacks and forced three fumbles. In limited playing time this season, Fails was in on two tackles against Louisiana Tech.

    Fails was the third player to die during Slocum's 14 seasons as the Aggies' coach.

    Aggie defensive lineman Terry Nichols was killed in a car accident in 2000. Walk-on kicker James Glenn of League City collapsed and died before a practice in 1991. An autopsy revealed he had an enlarged heart.

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    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Allen Bates (---.motorola.com)

    Date: 11-26-02 10:42

    http://www.austin360.com/aas/news/112702/27fails.html

    Cause of Fail's death found

    Texas A&M football player died after injury to his leg

    By John Maher

    AMERICAN-STATESMAN STAFF

    Tuesday, November 26, 2002

    Texas A&M football player Brandon Fails died from a blood clot that traveled to his lungs, the Travis County medical examiner's office ruled Tuesday.

    The medical examiner completed the autopsy Tuesday morning and was expected to release the final report Wednesday.

    Fails, an 18-year-old freshman defensive end, died Monday morning after collapsing in his dorm room at Cain Hall on the Texas A&M campus in College Station. Because Brazos County does not have a coroner, it contracted with Travis County to perform the autopsy.

    Texas A&M Coach R.C. Slocum initially speculated that the death might be linked to a history of heart problems in Fails' family.

    But the cause of death was found to be a massive pulmonary thromboembolism, a blood clot caused by an injury to the right leg. Fails, a freshman, played in four games for Texas A&M this season before having knee surgery Oct. 22.

    [email protected]; 445-3956

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Sarah B. Board Moderator (12.144.99.---)

    Date: 11-26-02 11:28

    This begs the question ---why would an otherwise healthy kid throw a massive clot? Was this clot growing since the surgery? I don't know enough anatomy to understand this one. Anyone?

    S

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Reenie Smith (---.snbrca.adelphia.net)

    Date: 11-26-02 14:32

    My sister in law had a pulmonary embolism shortly after having a c-section. They almost lost her. I guess it can happen....

    Reenie

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Erica (---.atlnga1.dsl-verizon.net)

    Date: 11-26-02 14:38

    A few years back I replaced a teacher who passed away from an embolism a few days after having a routine hysterectomy!

    Erica

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Erica (---.atlnga1.dsl-verizon.net)

    Date: 11-26-02 14:39

    A few years back I replaced a teacher who passed away from an embolism a few days after having a routine hysterectomy!

    Erica

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Lisa Salberg (---.dyn.optonline.net)

    Date: 11-26-02 17:18

    In August 2001 2 boys died within a few days of each other in the same area this happened. I was called by the Austin Statesman and interviewed the article ran on Sept. 10 2001 ( obvious as to why the date has stuck with me ).

    It saddens me beyond words that more are lost and misinformation is given. I would bet that the family history is not that the grandfather survived a heart attach at age 32 but survived a cardiac arrest...

    too tired to comment futher...

    God Bless Brandon Fails...

    I know what I want for Christmas this year...although I do not believe it is possible... a year free from the death of our young people, a year of better education, a year of living..

    Peace to all,

    Lisa

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Allen Bates (---.motorola.com)

    Date: 11-27-02 03:02

    Here is the latest note that I received:

    Allen, Pulmonary thrombosis is a rare complication following a surgery. I'm not sure about prevention if no symptoms were present. It can happen very suddenly and the ones I have heard about have resulted in death. This massive blood clot to the lung tissue results in the lung not being able to exchange any oxygen. Hope this helps.

    By the way, I'm still working with the AHA on their wording of that statement on AED's in Schools. I have the ear of the Senior Science Editor so I hope that I can influence their support on this issue. I will let you know if and when I get this finished.

    My question (emailed with the 'cause of death' article) was:

    A tragedy, nonetheless, despite a family history of early heart problems, another cause was found.

    Does anyone know if "...a massive pulmonary thromboembolism" could have been detected or prevented?

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Allen Bates (---.motorola.com)

    Date: 11-27-02 03:03

    BTW, Lisa,

    Amen !!

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Re: A&M Player that died]

    Author: Linda, Bd of Directors (---.wmnsmd.adelphia.net)

    Date: 11-27-02 06:42

    The best that can be done to prevent the complication of the "pulmonary thromboembolism" is education. This should be a part of pre-op teaching and an ongoing reminder thru followup to all having surgery. The clot or embolism can form in the lower leg from periods of immobility and then break loose and travel to the lungs when activity is resumed. This is part of the reason patients are told to move the legs around in bed, when on long drives, stop every 2 hrs or so to move around, etc. Signs and symptoms to watch for also need to be stressed. Pain, redness, warmth, swelling in the calf should be reported immediately. If found early, it can be treated before it breaks loose an travels. One does not have to be elderly to develope this complication. Yes, prevention is the way to go, but knowing what to watch for is the next best thing. My sympathy goes out to Brandon's family and friends as they struggle to deal with this tragedy. Sincerely, Linda
    NOTE: This is a post from the previous forum message board.

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