Student’s heart stops after lifting weights at Northridge High in Layton

Posted at 9:31 PM, Apr 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-27 23:31:58-04

LAYTON, Utah -- A Northridge High School student almost died Wednesday when he collapsed in the hallway.

The 17-year-old boy wasn't breathing and didn't have a pulse. That's when the school's athletic trainer stepped in and saved his life. Students, teachers, parents and staff are now calling Leigh Otis a hero.

The football player had just finished lifting weights with teammates in the weight room when he went down.

"When his friend was getting a drink of water he was just standing over waiting for him and then he collapsed," said Otis.

Students began yelling for Otis. She ran to the boy, not knowing what to expect.

"He had no pulse, he wasn't breathing, so at that point we knew time was an issue," said Otis.

Otis has had years of CPR training, even teaching her own CPR class, but she never had to use the life saving technique until now.

"At the moment I didn't know what I was feeling, it was just something I reacted to, and I didn't have to think about it, it was just second nature," said Otis.

Next Otis pulled out an automated external defibrillator. She gave one shock, and the boy opened his eyes.

"When I said his name he looked right at me, I asked him where he was, and he said he was at Northridge," said Otis.

Moments later the paramedics were rushing the boy to the hospital, alive.

"I don't feel like it was a heroic effort, that's what I'm trained to do, and I didn't want him to die," said Otis.

Northridge High School is not releasing the student's name. He is recovering in the hospital in stable condition.