12-year-old boy dies after collapsing in sweltering heat during school PE

12-year-old Yahshua Robinson, passed away on August 29, 2023 while at school in Canyon Lake, California.

A devastating incident unfolded at Canyon Lake Middle School on August 29, when 12-year-old Yahshua Robinson collapsed during a “medical emergency” in physical education class and later succumbed to cardiac arrest at the hospital.

According to the boy’s family, as shared on their GoFundMe page, the day started as any other day for Yahshua. According to Amarna Plummer, who created their GoFundMe page, it was during his participation in the PE activities that he became unresponsive, believed to have been exacerbated by the sweltering heat that reached highs of 105 degrees that day. The National Weather Service had issued an excessive heat warning for the Lake Elsinore area from August 28 through August 30.

Janae and Eric Robinson, Yahshua’s parents, along with their three other children, are grappling with the profound loss. “The void Yahshua leaves behind is immense,” a statement on a GoFundMe page set up for the family reads. “The agony of losing a child is indescribable, and as we await the autopsy results with heavy hearts, we are reminded of life’s unpredictability.”

The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department confirmed in an email to McClatchy News that they responded to a call from the school regarding a “juvenile medical aid” around 11 a.m. on the day of the incident. While the investigation is ongoing, the department has not released further details.

Lake Elsinore Unified School District expressed their grief in a statement, “This is a time of great sorrow for the entire community,” while also confirming the provision of mental health and grief counselors for students and staff.

Yahshua’s aunt, Amarna Plummer, spoke to NBC4 about the incident, highlighting the need for accountability. “This is terrible. It happened on somebody else’s watch,” Plummer remarked.

The tragedy has deeply impacted the community, with many reflecting on the unpredictability of life and the importance of community support in times of grief. The GoFundMe page set up for the family urges assistance to help with the financial strain brought about by the sudden loss, calling for a unified show of love and compassion for the Robinson family.  As of press time, there was about $80k raised of a $100k goal. https://www.gofundme.com/f/yahshua-yaya-robinson