11-year-old boy collapses on baseball field, dies during game on Father’s Day

Published: June 23, 2019 6:55 AM EDT
John Mullins, 11 years old, collpses on the baseball field. (Credit: CBS)
John Mullins, 11 years old, collpses on the baseball field. (Credit: CBS)

11-year-old John Mullins was playing a baseball doubleheader on Father’s Day when he collapsed on the field. His family said, “John John” suffered a brain aneurysm and died this past Sunday.

“This was all within minutes, he said my head, my head. And they put ice on his head. Then he started hitting his chest,” said John Mullins III. “He was looking at Erica. He was fighting. He fought. He fought.”

John said his son loved his team and had a passion for baseball.

“He loved it ‘til the end. The kid was having an aneurysm. Having a stroke on the field and was still trying to make contact with that ball. He went out swinging.”

An avid lover of all sports, John’s family said #3 was willing to put in the work to excel at everything he did. Erica Mullins said he was a kind and loving boy who touched so many lives in his short time here on Earth.

“To hear the stories that we hadn’t heard over the years brings a smile to our face,” said his mother Erica. “To be able to continue to talk about him and to see him in videos and pictures is what we need to keep his memory alive.”

Erica said she will miss her boy’s beautiful smile. “I learned from him every day and even though he is gone I am still going to learn from him from the stories that I hear and from the people he has helped from the donations.”

John Mullins III, his father, said John John will live on because he is giving the gift of life through organ donation.

“Every organ. Every tissue. He wouldn’t have thought twice. We didn’t think twice. It’s going to help some people,” John said. The Mullins said it is estimated some 50 people will benefit.

The entire family is grateful for the community support. John said it is the best medicine.

Daughter Meira, 9 said she is going to miss her brother because they liked to play together, practice sports, and just be silly. Meira said she’s read all the cards sent their way and looked at the photos. “It impacted our family a lot. Not in a bad way, a good way, because when they helped us out they made everything better. They made us feel better about being sad for John.”

“Everything feels at peace because family and the community is so big, so strong. We will never forget it,” John said.

There was a community vigil planned for Saturday at Whetstone High School football stadium at 6:30 p.m.

Funeral arrangements are pending. The family has a GoFundMe page for funeral expenses, and other campaigns to honor his memory.