Family says linebacker at Dixie State died from low sodium

A composite image of Dixie State football player Abraham Reinhardt, who died suddenly March 22, 2019, in St. George, Utah | Image courtesy of the Dixie State Athletics, St. George News

HONOLULU (AP) — Family members say a Dixie State University linebacker’s death was linked to hyponatremia, a condition of abnormally low sodium levels.

Honolulu’s KHON-TV reported Monday that Abraham Reinhardt’s mother Malani told them her 23-year-old son’s sodium levels suddenly dropped before he died Friday.

She says it is unclear what caused her son’s sodium levels to plummet.

Dixie State athletic department spokesman Steve Johnson said Reinhardt, a native of Wailuku, Hawaii, left practice on March 19 after suffering a minor leg injury. He was treated with ice and stayed on the sidelines.

Reinhardt went to Dixie Regional Medical Center that night. His family said he suffered muscle pain and spasms, which turned into seizures causing brain swelling.

Two days before his passing, the Calvary Chapel Central Maui posted on Facebook asking for prayers from the Maui community and stated that Reinhardt was in serious condition in the intensive care unit at DRMC.

Abraham Reinhardt, date and location not specified. | Photo from GoFundMe, St. George News

A candlelight vigil was held Monday night on the Dixie State campus.

“We are all incredibly saddened and shocked by Abraham’s passing,” Jason Booth, Dixie State’s athletic director, said in a press release following Reinhardt’s death. “He’s leaving behind a team of equally amazing young men who are struggling with this news as well. We will do everything we can to support Abraham’s family and the team during this very difficult time.”

The redshirt senior had earned first team all-Rocky Mountain Athletic honors this past season.

“Trailblazer Nation is deeply grieved by the loss Abraham, and our hearts go out to the Reinhardt family, his team, coaches, and friends,” Dixie State President Richard B. Williams said in the press release.​

Current and former Dixie State football players flocked to social media to express their sorrow and support for Reinhardt’s family, using the hashtag #AB3.

GoFundMe account was set up for his medical bills.

St. George News contributed to this report.

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