The father of a teenage boy who collapsed and died during a footy game in country Victoria said his son would want his teammates to keep playing.
Castlemaine Football player Dallas Keogh-Frankling, 17, collapsed in the changing rooms after an away game against Kyneton Tigers in the under-18s Bendigo League.
His heartbroken father, Mark Frankling, said he only wanted ‘good things’ to come from the tragedy.
promising football player Dallas Keogh-Frankling, 17, has been remembered as a ‘great kid’ after he collapsed and died in the changing rooms following an under-18s game
His heartbroken father, Mark Frankling, has described how his son’s eyes rolled into the back of his head and his face turned ‘grey’ after the game. He was rushed to hospital but paramedics could not revive him
‘Dallas would still want them (his teammates) to play footy instead of not playing footy,’ he said.
‘That’s life, things can happen, accidents can happen, I just don’t want this to affect the footy club.’
Mr Franklin called on the coroner to provide answers about why his son died because he was perfectly healthy and had no pre-existing medical conditions.
‘I told them I want to find out what happened, because I don’t want this to happen to anyone else,’the father told the Herald Sun.
‘I don’t want this to happen to any other kid, I don’t think Dallas would want this either.’
Mr Franklin said his son was tackled by two people on the boundary line towards the end of the last quarter.
The youngster, remembered online by friends as ‘such a nice kid’, was playing for Castlemaine against Kyneton in Kyneton (pictured) in the Bendigo League when the tragedy happened
The Castlemaine club held a community gathering to remember Dallas on Sunday afternoon
His son sprang up straight away but was clutching his stomach before he took time out on the bench.
But in the changing rooms after the match his ‘eyes rolled in the ack of his head’ and his face turned ‘grey’.
He was sped to Kyneton Hospital in an ambulance where paramedics worked to resuscitate him.
‘They worked again on bringing him back. I held his hand and it felt cold. After an hour-and-a-half, they couldn’t bring him back,’ Mr Frankling said.
Mr Frankling said he was ‘such a proud father’ and his son ‘loved his footy’, rising before dawn some mornings to play.
‘It’s still hard to comprehend I won’t be driving him to footy, and him telling me what he’s going to do today.
‘He was just a great kid. There was never a bad word about him. He had great people around him, quiet and polite.’
Victorian premier Dan Andrews said: ‘On behalf of all Victorians I want to extend my deepest sympathies.
‘And people should be assured there will be a full investigation so we can try to understand what’s happened here.’
Tributes were paid by the Castelemaine community and footy fans further afield.
‘Incredibly saddening and devastating,’ Greater Bendigo councillor Matthew Evans said.
‘My sincerest of condolences and prayers to the family and the entire Castlemaine FNC. Thoughts with the Kyneton FNC as well.’
Victorian club North Geelong said: ‘From one community club to another, our thoughts are with your club and wider community at this tragic time.’
One woman wrote: ‘Hard to believe something like this can happen in junior football. My heart goes out to all. My son plays for U18 as well and I can’t even begin to imagine how hard this would be.’
A Victoria Police spokesman said: ‘Emergency services were called to reports of an unresponsive boy at a football field on Mollison Street, Kyneton, about 12.20pm.’
‘A 17-year-old boy from Castlemaine was taken to hospital where he later died.’
They are not treating the death as suspicious.
The Castlemaine club held a community gathering to remember Dallas on Sunday afternoon at the social rooms at Camp Reserve.