On Friday afternoon January 7, 2000, Joshua Peck passed away from a sudden cardiac arrest in the gym of his school. He was 17 years old, a fantastic basketball player and a senior who had already been accepted to two colleges. Josh performed in a skit at the school’s pep rally, changed his clothes and joined the other students to sing the alma mater. Then he collapsed. His basketball coach performed CPR, but was unable to save Josh’s life. No AED was available at the school and the nearest hospital was 20 minutes away.
Josh was a military kid and spent the ages of 8-11 at Loring AFB in northern Maine. Josh also spent many vacations in Maine and loved our state. His mom, Randi Clatchey was from Maine and after Josh’s death the family moved back.
Randi has dedicated her time to make sure what happened to her son does not happen in Maine. She started a foundation in his name that raises funds to purchase AEDs for local schools and colleges. The Josh Peck Foundation has placed 6 AEDs in the past year and is going strong. Randi has also joined the American Heart Association’s efforts to require all high school students be trained in hands-only CPR and told how to use an AED. That way, once her foundation buys an AED for a school, students will know to ask for it and won’t be afraid to use it if needed.
In his short life, Josh touched many people—his mom is making sure that she honors his memory through joining the American Heart Association’s You’re The Cure network and by purchasing AEDs for use in Maine communities.