Student-athlete hurts ankle, dies weeks later from MRSA

Julius Sudderth, 15, was student at Trinity Christian Academy

By Jim Piggott - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Trey Sudderth was playing basketball with his friends when he hurt his ankle. Three weeks later, he died after contracting a highly contagious disease.

The 15-year-old's father, Julius Sudderth, said his son died from MRSA, a disease that can be spread in health facilities. He said his son was in several hospitals before dying on Thursday.

"He was a pretty good kid. He loved to fish. Loved to play sports, basketball, football," Julius Sudderth said.

The teenager was a new student at Trinity Christian Academy, where his mother teaches Spanish. At the beginning of May, Trey Sudderth injured his ankle. The 15-year-old was taken to a health clinic for treatment, and his father believed everything was fine.

LINK: WebMD: Understanding MRSA infection

The teen's father said a few days later during football practice, his son took a hard hit and went to a different hospital after experiencing chest pain. He had trouble breathing, and it was at the hospital that the family learned he had MRSA.

Trey Sudderth was moved to a different hospital, and ended up in the intensive care unit. That's when Julius Sudderth received tragic news.

"They're telling us there's nothing they can do. Chances are slim to none. We need to make preparations," Julius Sudderth said. "I'm still in the mind frame that I'm taking my child to the hospital and maybe get an inhaler because ... a little pressure on his chest."

Julius Sudderth said his son went into cardiac arrest several times, and on Thursday, the family said its final goodbyes.

"I pretty much knew he wasn't there anymore and they already said he was brain dead," Sudderth said.

The father is not blaming any of the health facilities for his son contracting the disease. The family has started an online fundraising account to help with funeral expenses.

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