A high school football player at Southwest-Macon died Monday night after a medical emergency at practice, the Bibb County Schools district announced Tuesday.

Joshua Ivory Jr., 15, was rushed to the hospital, but passed away later Monday.

“Joshua was a wonderful young man full of promise and zeal,” Southwest principal A. Bernard Young wrote in a letter released by the school system. “He had an infectious smile and a very kind heart. He enjoyed sports and spending time with his family. Joshua’s personality made it easy for him to make a great impression and huge impact on his teammates, coaches and the entire Southwest family. He was one of a kind. A great example of a Southwest High School Patriot.”

The Bibb County Schools crisis support team is assisting the Southwest community in the wake of the tragedy. All athletic and band practices were canceled Tuesday “out of respect for this loss and to conduct a proper review of all protocols,” the system posted.

Head coach Joe Dupree and his staff saw Ivory was in distress and immediately called 911, Bibb County athletic director Barney Hester told the Macon Telegraph. Hester also said the coaches are CPR and first aid certified, and that all Georgia High School Association protocols were followed.

Monday was the opening day of high school football practices in Georgia, though the sessions are only permitted in shorts and helmets. Practices in pads begin next week.

“We called 911, the fire truck was here in 5 to 6 minutes,” Hester told the Telegraph. “It was handled in a timely manner... Joe Dupree and his staff did a really remarkable job when we realized we had a student in distress.”

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