‘We literally won the lottery:’ Clay County family shares life-saving message after son’s near-death

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. — It’s now been nearly six months since Christian and Jennifer Broadhurst received one of the worst calls a parent can: their 17-year-old son Riley Broadhurst had gone into cardiac arrest on his everyday jog. An otherwise seemingly perfectly healthy teenage boy was suddenly at risk of dying at a moment’s notice.


“It was one of those things I hope no parent ever has to go through. It was horrible,” recounted Christian Broadhurst. “But we literally won the lottery. He survived, and he shouldn’t have survived.”

Cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death among student-athletes, with the standard sports physical only detecting about 4% of underlying heart conditions.

On Saturday, the Broadhurst family, the Clay County Board of County Commissioners, and the non-profit Who We Play For gave out free electrocardiograms, a lifesaving five-minute test that helps detect heart issues early.

“It does an amazing job at picking up those underlying conditions that a regular physical wouldn’t pick up,” Riley pointed out at Saturday’s event. “It’s so quick, five minutes to get it done, and can save your life. It’s a huge step towards saving more kids.”

Dr. Justin Deaton, the Medical Director for Clay County EMS also outlined for Action News Jax Saturday the importance of knowing basic EMS information for everyday citizens… it just may save the life of a kid like Riley.

“Early defibrillation and CPR, which are things that can be done by community members that have very little or no medical training, is imperative to not only them surviving, but surviving with their, you know, full brain function and able to live a normal, healthy life,” said Dr. Deaton.

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