By Jacquellena Carrero, Andrew Rudansky, F. Brinley Bruton and Elisha Fieldstadt
A Texas high-school football player has died after suffering an aneurysm during a game, according to local officials and a family friend, at least the sixth prep player to die this season.
Alto High School football player Cam'ron Matthews collapsed on the sidelines of Friday night’s game within a minute of the end of the first half, according to local NBC affiliate KETK. He died at East Texas Medical Center in Tyler at about 5:30 Saturday night, Alto Independent School District superintendent Kerry Birdwell told NBC News.
Kimberly Hinson, a friend of Matthews’ family, told NBC News that the high school junior had just finished a play when he said he was dizzy and then fell to the ground due to an aneurysm. She said the family doesn’t think football was the culprit behind Matthews’ death.
Let our news meet your inbox. The news and stories that matters, delivered weekday mornings.
“God took Cam’ron when he was ready. It’s not football to blame,” said Hinson, who added that Matthews had been playing the game “ever since he was a young child.”
Hinson described Matthews as a “role model,” who was very close with his father and strong in his Christian faith. “He was the finest young man you will ever meet. He was perfect in every way. He was a fine Christian boy,” she said.
"There’s no words that can express how sorry we are to hear about the death of Cam'ron. During this difficult moment, our thoughts and prayers are always with your family!" a statement from the City of Alto's Facebook page read.
Jacquellena Carrero is a Desk Reporter at NBC News.
F. Brinley Bruton
F. Brinley Bruton is senior editor in charge of NBC News Digital’s London bureau.
Elisha Fieldstadt is a breaking news reporter for NBC News.