Hospital: 4 Walton band students treated for heat exhaustion
by Kim Isaza
newseditor@mdjonline.com
July 29, 2010 12:00 AM | 3776 views | 12 12 comments | 21 21 recommendations | email to a friend | print
MARIETTA - Four members of Walton High School's marching band program who were attending a camp at LaGrange College last week were treated at a local hospital for heat exhaustion, according to the hospital, but Walton's principal disputes that.

Patricia Rogers, a spokeswoman at West Georgia Medical Center in LaGrange, told the Journal that four students from east Cobb's Walton High School were treated in the hospital's emergency room.

"Their symptoms were related to the heat," Rogers said.

Three Walton students were admitted to the hospital's emergency room last Thursday, and the fourth was treated sometime after that, she said.

"They all pretty much had the same type of symptoms related to heat exhaustion, which was cramping and nausea. The students were brought into the emergency department and given fluids and cooling towels, and remained here until their body temperature lowered to what is considered normal and their fluid level was built back up," she said.

But Walton Principal Dr. Judy McNeill said through a district spokesman that only one student was treated for heat-related symptoms in LaGrange last week, and that student's parent took the student to the hospital as a precaution. McNeill was in LaGrange on Saturday for the band's final performance at the camp.

Doug Goodwin, a district spokesman, relayed McNeill's responses to inquires from the Journal.

"There were reports of three other students treated at the hospital for symptoms related to a virus, and a chaperone had the same virus, but it was not related in any way to heat, according to Dr. McNeill," Goodwin said.

But later Wednesday, Goodwin said in an e-mail that one student was transported to the hospital in LaGrange for heat-related symptoms; one student was taken by the student's parent to the hospital after practice, as a precaution; and one student was taken to the hospital in LaGrange for a sore back.

The temperature in LaGrange last Thursday was 101 degrees, according to Accuweather. Cobb County schools start a new year one week from today, on Aug. 5, the earliest start date in memory. Accuweather predicts a high temperature of 93 degrees on that day, with some rain showers.

There were 192 Walton students, and 30 chaperones at the weeklong band camp, Goodwin said, and the group returned to east Cobb last Saturday. The students at the band camp took water breaks every 20 minutes, as required, Goodwin said.

MDJ reporter Jon Gillooly contributed to this report.
Comments
(12)
Comments-icon Post a Comment
FutureMarchingBander
|
October 06, 2010
This story..is...kinda stupid. Like, I know I sound like, a stupid 8th grader, which in part, I am, but really?? How did this make the paper?? I plan on marching in the marching band next year @ Walton. So...okay, some kids can't stand the heat as much as others, OKAY. Yes, it gets hot in GA, get used to it....get over it... -.-"
@Walton Band Parent
|
July 31, 2010
I have to ask why didn't you speak up? Why did a journalist have to get a tip from someone completely outside the band as to what really went on? You could put a stop to this madness by just saying no to the band director or even calling in Child Welfare...PETA would be all over any animals that were treated this badly. I just don't understand how the parents can stand around and do nothing!
Walton Band Parent
|
July 30, 2010
I am a veteran and current band parent and was in LaGrange. I can tell you that the heat was beyond ridiculous and dangerous. And, yes, 4 students went to the hospital, in spite of the cover up. It doesn't matter how much kids are instructed to hydrate, at some point, the adults and staff need to realize that no band competition (which they are preparing for) is worth this. Hydrating can only help so much, but the serious and dangerous issue is the body temperature when the students are out on the field for hours during the hottest part of the day. Practice from 8am - 9pm is ridiculous. Whether there are food and indoor breaks or not. Other bands in Cobb County don't have these schedules nor "band camp" and STILL manage to blow Walton out of the water at BOA.
junior trumpet
|
July 30, 2010
Ok seriously? this actually made the news? There was nothing to report on. We practiced in the sun... yes... High school groups do that... There's never any complaining from football or soccer or any other teams. It was hot, yes, but Georgia in the summer gets hot. The truth is the band had parents hoovering over us 100% of the time making sure we were all ok. I caught the virus too and spent the last day in the clinic, but it was just a stomach virus that had nothing to do with the heat. And all the band kids who thought we were "overworked" need to come back to reality. The drumline worked harder than all of us, and were in the heat more, and they had no complaints whatsoever. This story is a non-issue. Period.
Tuba leader
|
July 30, 2010
I'm one of the bands student leaders and out of 8 kids in my section at any given time 4 were out for some sort of ailment. 2 of the kids were sent to the hospital, and one went home all together. Kids in my section were peeing blood and it wasn't from lack of water, but muscle deterioration which is mentioned with the sore back. My sections instruments are around 40 pounds of metal on one shoulder, but it's not so bad. For me I wasn't able to stomach any food the whole week and only ate apples in the morning with water throughout the day, I got a nice tan too.
Bandkid
|
July 29, 2010
It wasn't the buses. It's the heat outside on the field while marching around for 7 hours. The chaperones force water into us every 20 minutes. Every student had a giant water bottle that was refilled in between every water break. If the student was not drinking, you can blame them and not anyone else. It was hot out and only 1 student out of 222 people was in the hospital. What does that tell you? There was a virus going around camp, but viruses aren't heat exhaustion and neither is a back problem.
dirtdiver62
|
July 29, 2010
we went through this when I was a kid growing up in Fla.. We didnt have air conditoners and turned out fine. People just need use there common sense.
walton grad
|
July 29, 2010
I am still trying to figure out how this story is newsworthy. Maybe I am missing something, but it sounds to me like there were no serious injuries and no one was really hurt. What's the big deal? And why is this in the paper? I'm sorry for the kids that suffered nausea and cramps, but grab some water and get back in there.
GATORBOY62
|
July 29, 2010
AMEN!

Susan B
|
July 29, 2010
Mad mom - you are irrational.

Band Camp was this week last year - and years prior to this - it was not this week because of the calendar.

20 mins on the bus might be uncomfortable, but certainly not deadly. People drove around in cars for years without AC.

Get a grip, come back to reality.

ne cobb mom
|
July 29, 2010
No kidding...this is ridiculous, and to start school this early with heat advisories out is crazy. I'd love to see Banks, crowder eagle,constantino, sanderson and the like, ride the buses in the heat for a week. That would be a treat.
Mad Mom
|
July 29, 2010
Where are the parents of these band and football kids, you can stop this by standing up and saying enough is enough. However, the smallest victoms of this calendar have no choice. When one of our children DIES becuase they are forced onto unairconditioned buses in the hottest month of the year and in a yaer in which the temperatures are at record highs, their blood will be on your hands Abraham (liar), Banks (liar), Crowder Eagle and of course the Cheerleader Cash. I hope you can sleep at night, I know I would not be able to.
*We welcome your comments on the stories and issues of the day and seek to provide a forum for the community to voice opinions. All comments are subject to moderator approval before being made visible on the website but are not edited. The use of profanity, obscene and vulgar language, hate speech, and racial slurs is strictly prohibited. Advertisements, promotions, and spam will also be rejected. Please read our terms of service for full guides