Child athlete dies on field

2011-01-27 10:01

Johannesburg - A 12-year-old top primary school athlete from Limpopo has died after collapsing on the athletics field.

Emmanuel Maroga died on Tuesday afternoon at the Steelpoort Academy, previously the Steelpoort Primary School, near Burgersfort.

He was training for an athletics meet that is taking place in Mariepskop on Saturday.

The cause of his death is not yet known.

Big shock

Principal Anton Alberts said on Wednesday that Emmanuel's death was a big shock to all at the school.

"He was very fit and our best long-distance athlete in the Under 12 category."

Alberts said teachers who saw Maroga collapsing immediately carried out mouth-to-mouth resuscitation after finding no pulse. After continued resuscitation, he had a weak pulse, but died thereafter. Emergency workers arrived on the scene soon afterwards.

Alberts said Emmanuel had no underlying illnesses as far as they knew.

"He was a nice boy and an extremely good athlete." He had been in the school since Grade 1.

Emmanuel's classmates and teachers had to receive counselling on Wednesday.

Wednesday afternoon's athletics training was cancelled in memory of Emmanuel.

Gold medal

Alberts said Emmanuel was dedicated to his athletics. He also did cross-country running and played rugby.

"He said he wanted to win a gold medal at this year's inter-primary meet. The school will give a golden medal and certificate to his mother."

Emmanuel's mother, Mathilda Maroga, was on Wednesday afternoon too shocked to talk about her son's death. She is a single parent living in a village outside town.

Police will hold an inquest to determine what caused Emmanuel's death.

By late on Wednesday night, no funeral arrangements had been made.

  • leroux20 - 2011-01-27 10:08

    Very sad

  • 1gascan - 2011-01-27 10:15

    Sorry little chap - may you run free in peace! RIP Emmanuel

  • rethan - 2011-01-27 10:20


  • Melly30 - 2011-01-27 10:36

    Shame little man!! RIP...

  • Mmakadikwe1 - 2011-01-27 10:52

    Rest in Peace Mokone wa ntshi dikgolo.May your legacy and sportsmanship be a motivation for those you left behind.And to your parents I'd like to say thank you for sharing his life with us even thou it was not for long.

  • BRONZE - 2011-01-27 11:05

    I hope he wasn't over doing things, little hearts can't take too much strain. But this is just too sad. RIP lil man.

  • Flee - 2011-01-27 11:08

    RIP Little one... May your mom and family remember the good times and joy you brought to their lives, and not the sorrow they now feel...

  • - 2011-01-27 11:13

    RIP His little feet will be running in heaven. Sad

  • Darwinian - 2011-01-27 11:47

    Schools MUST ensure that ER Services are present at all sporting events. (Not only for Rugby)Even if it is just one Ambulance with its crew. The poor soul could've been saved with the trained ER personnel. Rest In Peace young one!

      focus.ntfc - 2011-01-27 12:03

      Thats daft .... we do not have resources in this country's major cities let alone a small rural place like Steelpoort. Besides this happened during training not an offical event.

      Craig - 2011-01-27 12:05

      Unfortunately this wont be possible. Coming from a racing backround it cost clubs around R10 000,00 for two days medical assistance = One ambulance. This is not viable for 99% of schools. But in a perfect world it would be and this might have had a better outcome. RIP little dude

  • Lunga - 2011-01-27 13:46

    very sad to loose such a young life

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