RILEY COUNTY, Kan. (WIBW) -- Tragedy struck before Sabetha High School took the field to play the Riley County Falcons Tuesday night.
Officials confirm that Tim Edelman, the father of a sophomore Sabetha football player and senior cheerleader, passed away after suffering heart problems before his son's game Tuesday night against Riley County. Both of his children were there that evening participating in their respective sports.
Riley County EMS Director Larry Couchman says paramedics were originally called to the high school football stadium about an hour before the game started for a male patient suffering a seizure. The patient, he said, had a pre-existing medical condition. While the ambulance was on the way there, the call changed to a cardiac arrest.
The game was delayed 45 minutes due to the medical emergency.
Edelman was rushed to Mercy Regional Health Center in Manhattan and was pronounced dead within several minutes of arriving at the medical facility.
A photo on Twitter showed the Sabetha team huddled together in prayer on the field.
Officials indicated that Edelman was also the video photographer for the Sabetha team.
Todd Evans, principal at Sabetha High School, told WIBW: "The Riley County coaches, administration and fans have been unbelievably supportive through out the whole process. I have a great deal of respect and gratitude for them."
Riley County USD 378 officials also issued a statement Wednesday: "“Our heartfelt condolences go out to the Edelman family and the entire Sabetha community. We are shocked and saddened by Tim’s untimely passing and join his family and the Sabetha community in mourning the loss of a father and involved community member. We will be cheering on Sabetha as they move on in the class 3A football state playoffs.”