Reagan Student Returns to Basketball after Cardiac Arrest

Reagan Student Returns to Basketball after Cardiac Arrest

It’s been 10 months since Reagan High School senior Kaeyel Moore shocked his basketball teammates and coaches. He collapsed suddenly during practice Jan. 9, and went into cardiac arrest. His heart had stopped, but thankfully his coach, John Hirst, and the team trainer had the presence of mind to employ the automated external defibrillator (AED) located in the gym to revive him until emergency personnel could transport him to the hospital for immediate care.
“We are trained on the AED every year, but this it the only time it has been used in an actual emergency,” Hirst said, never dreaming it would be needed for a 17-year-old athlete in the prime of life. “We weren’t even working out hard. We were just warming up – we hadn’t even started stretching. It literally saved his life!”

Throughout Kaeyel’s recovery, Reagan’s basketball coaches stayed in close communication with the Moore family. When he was cleared by his physician to play, they made plans for his return to the court. 

After running a battery of tests for months on end, doctors have been unable to determine the original cause of the heart attack, Hirst said. However, they implanted a medical device that will monitor and regulate Kaeyel’s heart rate. He was given the go ahead at the end of the summer to begin working himself back into shape and has begun practicing with the team. He will don jersey number 22 and join his varsity basketball teammates on the court of Littleton Gym Monday, Nov. 12, at 6:30 p.m.
“Kayle is a first-class individual – he’s every coach’s dream, every teacher’s dream,” Hirst said. “He’s the type of guy that you wish all your students could be like. He is universally liked on campus.  Everybody is pretty excited for him. We hope he will have a great senior year.”

“We’ve all made a pretty good team keeping our eyes out for Kaeyel,” Hirst said. “It was such a traumatic incident. It wouldn’t be honest not to say everybody has a little bit of trepidation. He is pretty insistent in wanting to be able to play, and everybody is looking forward to Kaeyel enjoying his senior season.”


By: Amy Morgan