“I was scared for my life” says Ocean Springs football player after collapsing during game

It's a happy ending, as Eric rejoined his classmates at school Monday.
Published: Oct. 16, 2023 at 3:52 PM CDT
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OCEAN SPRINGS, Miss. (WLOX) -From the brink of death to going to back to school. It’s been a scary and surreal weekend for Ocean Springs sophomore football player Eric Johnson, who collapsed on the field during Friday Night’s game at Harrison Central.

“I was coming off the field, and the next thing I know, I’m stumbling, then I wake up, on the ground,” Johnson said. “I was confused, and they rushed me into the back of an ambulance. He’s talking me through what we’re going to do, and I’m just scared for my life. i don’t know what’s going on.”

It’s something you never want to see at a high school football game.

“We get out on the field trying to figure out what’s going on. Our athletic trainer was there immediately, so was Harrison Central’s and the EMT’s,” said Jake Bramlett, Ocean Springs head football coach. “They handled everything professionally and at a very high rate of speed. They got everything taken care of pretty quickly and got him responsive and on an ambulance.”

Eric says at that point, it was fear and confusion. He says he’s always had an irregular heartbeat, but he added it’s never been an issue while playing football, until now.

“They were telling me something happened with my heart, but they weren’t sure what it was. So they ran tests and said there was a shock in it, and that’s why I passed out. So we’re lucky it wasn’t a cardiac arrest,” Johnson added.

He says it was a very scary experience and he’s still trying to process everything. He’s also extremely thankful to everyone that helped him in his time of need.

“I wasn’t expecting everyone to know about it, then my mom told me it was on TV, so I knew then that everyone would now. I just give thanks to those that helped me and prayed for me, because without that, I wouldn’t be here right now.”

It’s a happy ending, as Eric rejoined his classmates at school Monday.

“If I can make it through this, I’m good,” he told us.

Eric also tells us he plans on undergoing more testing to identify the issue and get it treated. By the way, Johnson also excels in the classroom with a 3.75 GPA.

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