|Sierra Jaid Sims|
It never seems to stop. Yesterday, eighteen year old Sierra Jaid Sims attended her high school and complained of chest pain near the chorus room at her high school. Sierra was in good shape, and plays three sports, including volleyball. An ambulance was called as she collapsed upon entering a classroom. EMS said that she was having some type of distress and that she was able to respond prior to going into a cardiac arrest. When she arrived at the hospital she experienced a final cardiac arrest where she died yesterday afternoon. Of course, an autopsy will be done in order to get as much information about the cause of death as possible. My prayers are with her parents, her family, her friends and her classmates today.
I no longer accept that sudden arrhythmic death syndrome in teens is rare. I still don't understand why every student who wishes to play sports doesn't receive an EKG. This would not detect every case of Long QT Syndrome, Brugada Syndrome or ventricular tachycardia from other arrhythmic syndromes, but it would detect some of them in advance of a cardiac arrest, and it would save some of them.
I miss Daniel as much today as I did in that first year since his departure from Earth, now six years ago. Sierra was also the age that Daniel would be now, if he had lived past twelve and a half.
I pray that a day comes in which cardiac arrhythmic death syndrome in youth becomes truly rare, or the predilection is detected through screening after birth as is the case now with cystic fibrosis.
Please pray for Sierra's family and friends for whom the journey of missing her has just begun. By all accounts, people knew Sierra to be a lovely outgoing young woman who was well known in school for her role in multiple sports, and also for her playing the lead in the upcoming school play "Alice in Wonderland".
Update: Just after I wrote the original post above, the medical examiner's office released a cause of death. The medical examiner believes that Sierra died as a result of a large blood clot in her pulmonary artery. This was therefore not a sudden arrhythmic death per se, however, it is yet another sudden and unexpected death in an otherwise healthy young person. It remains sad and devastating to her family, her friends and her community nonetheless.
To assist Sierra's family with funeral expenses, you may click this highlighted link