Upstate coaches’ quick response saves student’s life

Track and Field lines
Track and Field lines(Pixabay via MGN)
Published: Mar. 21, 2023 at 1:50 PM EDT
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ROEBUCK, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - An Upstate teenager is lucky to be alive after suffering from a severe allergic reaction. It’s all thanks to two of his coaches’ quick reaction.

On March 8, Dorman High School Junior sprinter and hurdler Ray Busby suffered an allergic reaction during a meet at T.L. Hanna, according to SCRunners.

“Ray was on the bus, and he has a nut allergy,” said Busby’s aunt Holly Bowser told SCRunners on behalf of his family. “He saw something that said strawberry and drank it and turned it over and saw cashews in it. He called his mom and she told him that he needed to go to his coaches. He started swelling and blacking out and told the coaches he was scared.

SCRunners said Dorman High assistants Tariq Caudle, who is in his 5th year at Dorman, and Jeffrey Johns, who is in his 11th year with the Cavaliers, said when Busby first got to them, he said he wasn’t feeling well.

“[Busby} never complains, so we knew something was going on,” Caudle said. “We didn’t know until he was about to pass out that the drink had cashews in it. He didn’t have his EpiPen, so I ran to the trainer and jumped on the Gator and we came back. We thought at first he was going to be alright, but he started sweating badly and becoming belligerent. We gave him the EpiPen and three to four minutes later he started to pass out.”

Johns, who is in his 11th year of coaching at Dorman, said that everyone jumped into action immediately.

Upon arrival at the hospital, SCRunners said Busby was put on a ventilator and remained on it for two days before awakening.

Bowser said that emergency room doctors were impressed with the assistant coaches’ response.

“The doctors said he wouldn’t be here unless they did what they did,” she said.

Caudle said that all the coaches go through National Federation of State High School Association Sports courses to prepare for sudden cardiac arrest and heat exhaustion situations. He added that Spartanburg School District 6 requires CPPR and first aid training every other year. He rode with Busby in the ambulance and said that the training helped Ray until paramedics could take over.

“I addressed our team in the middle of the field where we prayed for Busby’s safety, as well as everyone involved,” Johns said. “With the support of the Hanna coaches and administration, the meet was cancelled with the attention of everyone focused on Ray’s well being along with that of those affected by the traumatic event. The blessing is that Ray is home safely with his family.”

Johns went on to say that without the help of Caudle, Busby may not have made it through.

Bowser told SCRunners the family deeply appreciates the coaches and everyone that attended to Ray.

“We just want them recognized for what they did,” she said. “And they deserve to be.”

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