Tragedy on the sidelines during West Seattle soccer game

Here’s what we know about the major Seattle Fire medical response this morning to one of the fields at Riverview Playfield in Highland Park this morning: We went over to investigate after seeing two units rush by while we were blocks away at HP Improvement Club. Medics/firefighters ran onto the field with their equipment, and while we stayed far back, it was clear that CPR was being done. Neighbors told us a man had collapsed during a game. Games on that part of the field were called, and families left. Resuscitation efforts continued for some time; we had to move on, but have since learned from another witness that the Medical Examiner is there now, which indicates the man didn’t make it. We have asked West Seattle Soccer Club for any official information available, including the status of today’s games.

1:39 PM UPDATE: Commenter Doug says games at Riverview North are canceled for the rest of the day; we also received a text from a parent/nearby resident that her child’s 2 pm game was off. The man who died is reported to have been a coach.

3:34 PM UPDATE: We’ve received WSSC’s official statement:

We are deeply saddened by the tragedy that occurred during one of our Boys U8 soccer games this morning at Riverview Playfield. We treasure all of our volunteer coaches for their time and dedication to making sure our kids have a great season. Our thoughts and prayers are with the coach’s family and his team. The family will share more information with the West Seattle soccer community in the next few days.

West Seattle Soccer Club

6:52 PM: The coach’s wife called us. She just wanted to ask for your prayers.

MONDAY AFTERNOON UPDATE: The King County Medical Examiner has publicly identified the volunteer soccer coach who died as 38-year-old Ed Kingston. We know his many, many friends and relatives around the area already know – including many of those who have posted comments – but it’s worth a note that in addition to being a husband and father of two, he also had a remarkable professional life. A colleague wrote about him over the weekend on this collaborative website; the link was posted on the Facebook page of the West Seattle Soccer Club, for which he was a volunteer coach, working with his 7-year-old’s team on Saturday when it happened. Dr. Kingston was a sports psychologist, and also wrote from time to time on the same website where the tribute appeared – you can see his work archived here. We have not yet received word of memorial plans.

61 Replies to "Tragedy on the sidelines during West Seattle soccer game"

  • Alki Resident October 8, 2011 (1:28 pm)

    This is so sad,prayers out to the family of the person who died.If you find out the name please let us know,we have lots of soccer family friends.

  • Doug Langworthy October 8, 2011 (1:30 pm)

    The rest of the afternoon games at Riverview North have been canceled.

    • WSB October 8, 2011 (1:37 pm)

      Thank you, Doug L. We just got a text to that effect from a soccer mom and nearby resident whom we had spoken with while there earlier. Will add to the story. – TR

  • Seattle Mom October 8, 2011 (1:31 pm)

    He was a great man. He will be truly missed by his friends and family.

  • sad dad October 8, 2011 (1:32 pm)

    Please keep his family in your prayers…his son who was on the team he coached, daughter and wife…he was a wonderful man!

  • SJD October 8, 2011 (1:44 pm)

    Our prayers are with the family. Breaks my heart. God speed.

  • l October 8, 2011 (1:49 pm)

    So sad for the family – and for the kids who saw this.

  • WSSC Parent October 8, 2011 (1:50 pm)

    We were there as the medics were doing their best to revive him. Our deepest sympathy goes out to his wife and children. What does the family need? We want to support them.

  • Riverview Resident October 8, 2011 (1:54 pm)

    Our prayers are with the family right now.

  • me on 28th Ave SW October 8, 2011 (2:02 pm)

    So sad to hear about this. What a tragedy.

  • Soccer dad October 8, 2011 (2:43 pm)

    He was a coach and acting as ref in the game and collapsed suddenly, falling face down. We first thought he tripped, then thought it was a seizure as his body gasped. Several called 911 immediately and attempted preliminary CPR until EMT’s arrived. They started full CPR and used a defibrillator. Unfortunately to no avail. May he rest in peace and condolences to his family. A tragic and disturbing event to be witness to.

  • curbed_wheel October 8, 2011 (2:56 pm)

    Get to your Fire Department and get CPR training.

  • Kelsey Gallo October 8, 2011 (4:00 pm)

    I feel for everyone. I know EXACTLY how this feels. My dad was coaching my sisters team in 1999 and after the game he had an anureysm and died. This breaks my heart.

  • Sympathy October 8, 2011 (4:19 pm)

    Such a loss, thinking of the family. Words are too little, sending deep condolences. So, so sorry for your loss.

  • Soccer Mom October 8, 2011 (4:55 pm)

    What a horrible tragedy for the family and everyone else that witnessed this. Hug your family and loved ones every chance you get, as each day could be our last.

    Our prayers and thoughts are with the family. God Bless.

  • Resident October 8, 2011 (5:28 pm)

    As a coach and father in the same league my heart goes out to his children, wife, family and friends. My prayers are with you and I am very saddened by your loss as it touches close to home here.

    I volunteered to ref the game immediately prior to this game on the same field so even though I didn’t witness this–I feel very tied to it. We are watching our neighbors son and he played the 9:30 am game on that field. My daughter was set to play the game on field 2 at 12:30. We drove up to find the paramedics still on scene. Very surreal. My sincere condolences. I will look for more information from West Seattle Soccer Club for direction on how we can help support the family and team.

  • juju October 8, 2011 (5:40 pm)

    Was at the playfield for another game…left feeling heartbroken for the family. My thoughts go out to them.

  • Cclarue October 8, 2011 (5:50 pm)

    My prayers are with this family. My heart is breaking for them.

  • Andre October 8, 2011 (6:31 pm)

    My condolences to his family. God bless them in their time of need.

  • MMB October 8, 2011 (6:54 pm)

    O – so sad! Condolences to all.

  • Mort October 8, 2011 (7:21 pm)

    What a heart breaking thing for everyone involved and something this family will never really get over. My sincerest condolences.
    And while I applaud the WSB for encouraging people to learn CPR, the survival rate for sudden onset heart attacks, like this probably was, is depressingly low, generally under 5%, even with CPR. Seattle is considered a leader in CPR training but even here only 7% ever make it to the hospital alive. Diet, exercise, a moderate lifestyle and medication are still really the only ways to prevent and control heart disease and it’s consequences.

  • WSSC Coach & Team October 8, 2011 (7:24 pm)

    I was coaching a game at the South end of Riverview when this was going on. We were unaware of the severity… and only found out after our game what happened. Everyone was shocked! Our players asked numerous question when they heard the conversation. Our prayers go out to the family, friends & team.

  • Jessica October 8, 2011 (7:54 pm)

    My son’s U8 team was playing on another field – I want this family to know the love and support of their community – please post any needs they may have. I’m so encouraged that his wife has asked for prayers – we prayed at the field and will continue to pray for this family.

  • Wssc mom October 8, 2011 (7:56 pm)

    So very sad for this family:( I will be posting for them…

  • Alkiguy October 8, 2011 (9:09 pm)

    This is truly heartbreaking. I must disagree with Mort’s posting however. Since the early seventies Seattle has been, and remains, a leader in cardiac resuscitation. Not sure where you gathered your facts but the survival rate to the hospital here is near 50% in instances of ventricular fibrillation. There could be many reasons behind this collapse but for sudden cardiac death, CPR in conjunction with EMS response, makes all the difference. In fact, the high success rate here has always been tied to citizen CPR and the subsequent high quality care by the fire department and receiving hospitals. Lifestyle and health awareness contribute immeasurably to cardiovascular and overall health but don’t discount the value of lifesaving training. Many people are genetically predisposed to some contributing conditions.I am so sorry for the family and all those who will be affected by this loss.

    • WSB October 8, 2011 (9:20 pm)

      Thanks, Alkiguy, again, we don’t have any of the facts – only anecdotal reports – in terms of what happened and why. And at this point, again, what matters most is empathy/sympathy for a family that suddenly suffered a devastating loss, in a very public place, during regular activities of a local league that literally involves thousands of West Seattleites every year … In the brief conversation that co-publisher Patrick had with the coach’s widow – who called out of the blue – she also indicated appreciation for the kind words already expressed – TR

  • Crystal F October 8, 2011 (9:46 pm)

    I just wanted to let the family know that I’m so sorry for their loss and my thoughts and prayers will continue to be with them.

  • AnotherDad October 8, 2011 (9:55 pm)

    Today’s scene at the soccer fields was incredibly difficult to witness. I prayed for this young man and his young family as he expired. We did our very best as professionals to revive him but our efforts failed. Tonight this community as a whole mourns together over such a tragic public event. God bless him and his family.

  • Nicole October 8, 2011 (10:02 pm)

    We at the Des Moines Midway Soccer Club are deeply saddened by this great loss.

    Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and his team.

    Please let us know if we can offer help in any way.

  • Chris October 8, 2011 (10:06 pm)

    My heart aches for the family of this man. My prayers are definitely with he and his family.

    Regarding Mort’s comments, he is pretty far off base. The Seattle/King County area has extremely high survival rates for witnessed cardiac arrest (with initial rhythm being ventricular fibrillation). The role of the bystander/layperson doing GOOD, effective CPR cannot be stressed enough. AND, if there is a PAD (Public Access Defibrillator) around, then we’re talking about bystanders performing definitive care for someone in cardiac arrest. All of that coupled with an exceptional EMS system (like in Seattle and King County), and survival rates are unsurpassed. I’m very glad to hear that bystanders performed CPR on this guy, as it gave him a chance. Again, very sorry for the families loss.

  • WSSC mom October 8, 2011 (10:07 pm)

    Our son was playing in this game. I cannot imagine the pain of loss in this family. We want to offer our love and support to the family and teams involved. The players were 7 yr. olds who may or may not be able to grasp what happened, my son did not. Please hug your kids extra tight tonight.

    Kudos to the parents and coaches who were at the field to respond to the tragedy.

  • Y October 8, 2011 (10:10 pm)

    Our team was playing on one of the South fields – while it was obvious that there was a medical emergency… we did not learn of the serious emergency or the very sad outcome until after our game. My heart goes out to the family, friends and the team.

    I hardly think this is the forum for discussing anything other than condolences. There is every indication that everything was done to try to save this life… sometimes everything just isn’t enough. Imagine this is your spouse,Dad,best friend, the coach of your child’s soccer team — think about how you might feel while reading anything posted here.

  • B October 8, 2011 (11:05 pm)

    WSSC has posted on their facebook page..
    take a few minutes to read some of his very thougthful posts.

  • AJP October 8, 2011 (11:05 pm)

    I’m so very saddened to hear this. My heart and prayers go out to this family.

  • enviromaven October 8, 2011 (11:27 pm)

    I agree with Y. This is a devastating loss for the family and friends of the man who died, and a traumatic experience for anyone who witnessed his passing. I am so sorry and will keep all of you in my prayers.

  • Desmoines Mom October 8, 2011 (11:56 pm)

    My heart goes out to everyone involved. Our family to experienced something similar. This last August my husband (37) had a heart attack at work. Thankfully he is ok. Our 8 year old son had a difficult time understanding the severity. Please know we are a very strong catholic family and we are praying for comfort and the strength to get through this tough time.

  • KL October 9, 2011 (12:05 am)

    My heart goes out to the family and to all the kids who were there today. We arrived for our soccer game just after this tragic event, and it was devastating to see the family and the kids who witnessed what happened. Such a sad reminder of just how precious and fragile is the everyday life I often take for granted. I gave my kids a lot of extra hugs today.

    To the coach’s wife and children, I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. My thoughts are (and will continue to be) with you.

  • Hatmomma October 9, 2011 (4:59 am)

    To the family- We too were at the field this morning and I’ve not stopped thinking about you since. It sounds cliche, but you really are in my thoughts and prayers and will continue to be. Your community is here for you to offer help and support if there is anything we can do. I wish for you peace and love.

  • Laura October 9, 2011 (7:34 am)

    prayers for the family and those tied to the family. this is a great tragedy.

  • TLS October 9, 2011 (7:44 am)

    Even with millions of words at my disposal, I cannot put a string of them together that conveys the sadness I feel and how deeply my heart aches for the family. I understand it may too soon to talk about “tomorrow”, but amazingly it will be here before we know it. For the children: Camp Erin is a wonderful (and free) bereavement camp for children and teens between the ages of 6 and 17 who are grieving a significant loss. This posting is not meant to be a solicitation, but rather an offer of information and an available resource. If a friend of the family would like to keep the information and possibly present it at a better time it is worth a look. I will keep this family and these children in my prayers always.

  • U7 soccer coach October 9, 2011 (8:44 am)

    Our thoughts and prayers are with the family.

  • Dawn October 9, 2011 (8:48 am)

    thank u “another dad”… as a “soccer mom” of a son of the league who has a dad that helps coach and ref. , I cant stop thinking how this can happen at anytime/ anyplace to any of us… kiss and hug our loved ones as often as we can ! I cant emphasis enough how my heart goes out to this family!!!! my prayers cont……

  • Maisy October 9, 2011 (9:12 am)

    Words are not enough to express our sorrow for this family. We are keeping each of them in our thoughts and hope they feel surrounded by caring during this tragic time.

  • Samantha October 9, 2011 (10:14 am)

    I too was present while resuscitation efforts were underway. Our family is very shaken by this as well. Having lost my own father at such a young age my pain reminds me of the road ahead for this family. Please post needs for the family whether donations, meals, support etc. My heart is full for a family I don’t know but feel compassion to serve. Many blessings to them.

  • curbed_wheel October 9, 2011 (10:15 am)

    Deepest sympathy and condolences to the family and those who knew this wonderful man.

    This rec-soccer family wants to help, please let us know what the family may need….meals, etc?

  • LivesinWS October 9, 2011 (10:33 am)

    So sorry to hear of this. And sudden cardiac death — or from some other cause — can strike someone with absolutely no risk factors. My sympathy is with the family and friends. What a wonderfully involved and caring person this man must have been.

  • Alki Resident October 9, 2011 (11:12 am)

    TLS-thank you for bringing this up.I think it’s great they have such a place for this kind of situation and I hope it’s used regularly.We lost our dad to cancer while still in high school,nobody talked about it and we didn’t know how to deal with our loss.And mom was overwhelmed with three kids and a full time RN job.I will definitely bring up this camp to someone i know.

  • Beth October 9, 2011 (11:29 am)

    So sad that the kids had to learn a life lesson this way. Our thoughts and prayers for his family, friends and the kids.

  • Karl October 9, 2011 (3:06 pm)

    Sad :( Kudos to Seattle Fire L13 E11 and Med 32 crews! I am sure this is the worst type, to the bystanders for the immedidate action. Odds where stacked against all involved before they got to him. Comfort can come from that fact he went out doing what he loved to do and making a difference in young people’s life’s, we could all be so lucky our bell rings.

    Thoughts and prayers to all

  • jeunglady October 9, 2011 (3:36 pm)

    I am so saddened by this news. I really feel for the family and their friends. Will keep them and their family/friends in our thoughts…

  • Kristina October 9, 2011 (3:53 pm)

    My thoughts and prayers are with this family.

  • wej October 9, 2011 (8:56 pm)

    I cannot express enough; my sympathies and prayers that i have for the family and friends. May the love and spirit shown by the West Seattle and Soccer Community help carry the family thru this sad moment.

  • Sheree October 10, 2011 (2:55 pm)

    I taught with him several years ago. He was one of the only other teachers at the school who made me feel welcome. Such a kind and fun person. I’m so saddened and my heart goes out to his family.

  • former student October 11, 2011 (2:41 pm)

    Ed was BY FAR my FAVORITE professor i have ever had. he taught me more then any other professor has ever taught me. he was an amazing teacher, very sad to hear he passed away. i wish more teachers could be like him. he cared so much about his students. prayers go out to his wife & children <3

  • Friend October 11, 2011 (9:20 pm)

    Just in case anybody is still checking this, here is the site for donations to help the family. R.I.P. Ed, we’ll miss you.

  • kr October 11, 2011 (9:31 pm)

    There is a fund that’s been set up to help his wife, son, and daughter during this time.

    You can also donate at any Sound Community Bank location.

    • WSB October 11, 2011 (9:50 pm)

      Thanks, KR. I have been waiting for something official from a family friend and it looks like I have just received it. Going up shortly.

  • Matt Hayden October 12, 2011 (6:01 pm)

    Dr. K., I am forever grateful for your insight and wisdom. You helped me gain a passion for community, and a desire to help others. Your kind words helped me advance both educationally as well as professionally. Thank you so much, I will miss your friendship.

  • Kate October 12, 2011 (8:06 pm)

    So, so sorry to hear about this tragic event and I send my deepest condolences to his family. The only memory I can muster of my first day of high school was sitting in the first row of Mr. Kingston’s 3rd period Contemporary World Issues class, excited and nervous and self-concious – all the things a girl feels on her very first day of high school. I’ll never forget how warm and welcoming Mr. Kingston was. I always looked forward to his class. Whenever I have to write an essay, I can still hear his voice in my head:

    “Don’t think of it as writing an essay, think of it as Happy Fun Time!”

  • Soccer Mom Susan October 14, 2011 (7:48 am)

    My kids play at this field and my husband is a soccer coach, so while I did not know this gentleman I feel a connection. Sending the warmest wishes to his family, I cannot imagine their grief right now. Reading the posts, it is clear what an exceptional human being Mr. Kingston was and how greatly he will be missed. It sounds like he left a part of himself with all who knew him and truly made the world a better place. Rest in peace, my friend.

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