12-year-old boy dies after begging for water when forced to run in excessive heat at California school

"He was reaching out to the teacher, saying he needed some water."


On Tuesday, 12-year-old Yahshua Robinson died when he collapsed after being forced to run in the heat during his PE class at Canyon Lake Middle School in Lake Elsinore, California.

According to NBC Los Angeles, around 11 am the temperature outside was in the low to mid 90 degrees when Robinson became unresponsive. He was transported to Loma Linda University Medical Center, where his family says he suffered cardiac arrest. 

Robinson's aunt Amanda Plummer told the outlet he was made to run because he had not dressed appropriately for PE that day. Other students said, Robinson began not feeling well and was begging for water. 

"He was reaching out to the teacher, saying he needed some water. He said he couldn't breathe. He was telling the kids this,” Plummer said.

She questioned, "Why would you have a child in his clothes – he didn't dress out – running a field?” Plummer noted that Robinson's mother is a PE teacher at a different school and she had warned school administrators to not let the kids go outside because of the heat. 

"She informs the administration, ‘Do not let any children go out today for P.E.’ And what happened? She gets a call he passed out on the field,” Plummer told the outlet. "This is terrible. It happened on somebody else's watch." 

GoFundMe set up by Plummer read, "The void Yahshua leaves behind is profound. Janae & Eric Robinson and their three other children are trying to come to terms with this devastating reality." The statement continued, "The agony of losing a child is indescribable, and as we wait with heavy hearts for the autopsy results, we are reminded of the unpredictability of life."

"It is during times like these that we as a community can come together to support one another," it said. "From the depths of our hearts, we thank you for standing alongside the Robinson family, for being their beacon of hope, and for showing that love and compassion remain resilient even in the face of overwhelming sorrow."

The Lake Elsinore Unified School District said in a statement that grief counselors and resources were available to students and staff. "In this difficult moment, we are deeply saddened to confirm the passing of one of our students due to a medical emergency on one of our LEUSD campuses,” the statement said. “Our hearts are with the family, friends, and our school community.”

press release from the Riverside County Sheriff has multiple items listed as pending further investigation by its Lake Elsinore Station. 

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