The family, as you can imagine, is quite traumatized by this event. But we're told the 8-year-old baseball survivor is doing well, in stable condition. He's being held at the hospital for observation in what has turned into a remarkable story.
Young players took to the fields on this sunny Sunday, but everyone was mindful of the fate of an 8-year-old boy playing for the Blue Jays the day before during a Rohnert Park Cal Ripken Baseball League game.
"I was right behind the plate and this kid got hit in the heart with the ball," witness Trenton Starrett said. The 14-year-old said he was there standing right behind home plate as the umpire, ""He went to first, like he tripped once, and he got back up, and then fell again, and then he didn't get back up," Starrett said.
"Fortunately we had two off-duty paramedics that were in the stands and watched it happen," Rohnert Park baseball director Aaron Johnson said. "They quickly came to his aid and realized he needed CPR."
The boy had stopped breathing and had no pulse. Emergency crews arriving at the ball field used a defibrillator to get his heart beating again.
The 8-year-old was taken to a hospital in Santa Rosa, but transported to Children's Hospital Oakland by helicopter.
"Could have been my kid, absolutely," parent David Hurwitz said. "Some of these kids throw hard, it's amazing to see how hard they throw. And when my kid's at bat, it could happen to anyone."
The pitches fly at 30 to 50 mph. Rohnert Park mom Jeannie Hurwitz sustained a serious injury to her eye while playing catch with her son in their front yard.
Leslie: "So you know what a baseball can do?"
Jeannie: "Uh, yeah! Here's proof!"
We hear a lot about protecting heads in sports, but not so much about protecting hearts.
Baseball officials in Rohnert Park say that as a result of this incident, they will consider stocking defibrillators at each concession shack at the baseball diamonds there in the future.