A 17-year-old All-City soccer player died this weekend while training with his team on a day when temperatures reached 111 degrees in Southern California.
Shane Thomas, a student at Palisades High School, was found unresponsive by teammates at Ayala Park on Saturday after leaving to return items to his coach's car, the Los Angeles Times reported. Despite their efforts, Thomas was reportedly unable to be revived after emergency services administered CPR.
According to KCBS, temperatures in the area peaked at 111 degrees on Saturday, and investigators believe Thomas' death may have been heat-related. A cause of death won't be determined until an autopsy has been performed, the outlet said.
Thomas' sister, Cheyenne Thomas, penned a heartfelt tribute to her brother on social media following his death.
"Today, God took my soul from me, my best friend. I’m numb inside," she wrote. "You didn’t deserve this, but you passed right after doing what you love, playing the beautiful game. I’ve never met someone so genuine, focused, receptive, responsible, loving. You were perfect, I couldn’t have asked for a better brother. My only brother, my other half."
"I will carry you with me forever. I know you’ll watch over mom, dad, and I," Cheyenne continued. "I hope you’re in paradise right now ballin’ – with a ball right next to you on the plushest pitch. I can’t wait to meet you there. I’ll love you forever Shane."
A GoFundMe has been set up by the family to raise funds for Thomas' funeral costs and has raised over $36,600 as of Wednesday afternoon.
"He was one of the nicest third graders I ever had the privilege to teach," Deborah Galambos wrote on the page. "He was a truly kindhearted, sweet, caring, and considerate child. I know with the continued support of his dad and the rest of his family he must have grown into a fine young man."
Added another donor: "A kind soul with an infectious smile. Shane you will be deeply missed."
According to the Times, Thomas scored 19 goals last season and was set to be a team captain this year.
“I know he was training, doing what he loves best,” Palisades coach Marvin Lemus told the newspaper. “He was really excited for this season.”
In a follow-up post to Instagram, Cheyenne offered her appreciation to those who had sent the family condolences and anyone who had donated to their GoFundMe.
"Shane, my little brother, we were attached at the hip when you weren’t on the field," she wrote. "I would say I knew you best, but after reading the hundreds of messages from soccer organizations, parents, teammates, coaches, friends, family, I had no idea I was living with a legend."
"To everyone who has shared their respects and condolences, thank you. To everyone who has contributed to the GoFundMe page, thank you," she continued. "My family has been in tears from the constant outpour of love and support. We can’t thank you enough."
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