Second high school football coach mending after heart attack

Football on field.
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For the second time this season, a high school football coach suffered a heart attack, forcing the school's athletic training staff to act fast to provide life-saving help.

Don Cayer, the football coach and athletic director at Ganesha in Pomona, became ill near the conclusion of Friday's 24-21 loss to La Puente. He was taken by ambulance to a hospital.

In a text message on Monday, Cayer said, "I'm alive. Had three blocked arteries. But looks like they saved my life."

The Pomona Unified School District said in a statement on Monday: “Coach Don Cayer of Ganesha High School is doing great. We are very thankful for our athletic trainers, standby ambulance and having quick access to life saving medical technology. The fast actions of the athletic trainers and the Ganesha and La Puente High School’s administrative teams is what saved Don’s life."

Trainers used an AED device to help revive Cayer.

Last month another football coach, Eric Martinez of Diamond Ranch, started having chest pains during a game against Glendora and was treated by athletic trainers and paramedics. He later underwent surgery and has since returned to coaching.

It points to the importance of having an athletic trainer, something that is lacking at many public high schools in California.

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This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.