Grieving Mother Sends Grave Warning After Hike Ends in Teen's Death
FIfteen-year-old Reid Comita loved the Boy Scouts.
His mother, Copper Comita, told CBS News, “Every time he walked through that door, he was very excited to show me, ‘Look what I got mom!’”
In fact, Reid was only one badge away from receiving the coveted title of Eagle Scout. So he signed up for a beginner-level backpacking trip to earn his final badge.
However, Reid somehow ended up in a group that took him on a difficult trail in 99-degree weather. While he trooped through West Texas wilderness, the young teen developed heatstroke.
He eventually collapsed after a 7-mile hike spent lugging a hefty backpack. Paramedics couldn’t reach him, and first responders had to airlift him out.
The intervention came too late. Reid died from heatstroke.
Over a year and a half after the tragic event, Copper Comita has started a heat-stroke-awareness campaign.
Part of her efforts involves simply making people aware.
“Heat stroke can affect anybody put in a position of excessive heat,” she told KDFW.
“Heat stroke can be preventable in more cases than not. But once you cross that threshold from heat exhaustion to heat stroke it is very hard to come back from.
“You can quickly go from a headache, stomach ache, profusely sweating, to extreme nausea vomiting, no sweating, confusion.”
So what should you do if you find yourself experiencing those symptoms?
One solution is to get out of the heat. Another involves drinking more water, although that works better if you’ve imbibed beforehand.
“Morning you start isn’t when you hydrate,” Copper explained. “Hydrate a few days ahead of time.”
Of course, no amount of outreach will bring Reid Comita back. Yet his mother has said that she’s found some solace in attempting to help others.
“It’s nice to be able talk about him without crying,” she said. “I spent the first year and a half crying.”
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