Tyler Terry was described as a great young man with a tremendous future, but his life was cut short on Sunday.
Terry, who was a senior at Quince Orchard High School in Montgomery County, died after spending more than two weeks at Children’s National Medical Center.
Jennifer Springer, who is a close friend, told WUSA9 Terry’s heart started malfunctioning and stopped on Monday, January 29.
According to Springer, Terry’s friends called 911 and began CPR on the teenager for 25 minutes.
Loved ones said Terry’s brain was not getting enough oxygen, and he was placed in a medically induced coma.
Terry spent weeks in the intensive care unit (ICU) where doctors performed tests and determined his brain had no activity.
According to Springer, the Terry family made the difficult decision to take him off of life support on Sunday.
Springer shared the following message from Terry’s sister:
"My Whole world turned upside down today....one of my heartstrings received his angel wings, walking through the gates of heaven with not much to say but a smile that would bring abundance of light to the heavens!! I will always be proud of you little brother (HeavyHearted)"
The Montgomery County Police Department confirmed it is investigating a fight that occurred off of school property on January 29th at a community basketball court located in the area of Hillstone Road and Timber Rock Road.
A Montgomery County Public Schools spokesperson told WUSA9 the off-campus fight involved several Quince Orchard high school students.
According to the school district, Terry was present at the off-campus fight.
Detectives discovered two groups met on the basketball court with the intention of fighting.
“Terry, from one group, and an adult male from the other group, fought first,” a MCPD press release stated. “The fight between Terry and the other male involved minimal physical contact. After approximately two to three minutes of fighting, Terry stopped fighting and walked away from his opponent, appearing as if he were tired.”
Police said Terry collapsed while other groups were continuing to fight and became unconscious.
Several witnesses reportedly recorded three fights and Terry’s collapse on their cell phones.
The school district spokesperson confirmed that first responders transported Terry from the same location of the off-campus incident but was not believed his hospitalization had anything to do with the fight.
Friends of the family believe reports of Terry being present at the fight might not be true and are not relevant to this story.
Police said doctors performed tests and discovered Terry did not suffer any injuries from the fight.
Medical staff determined that Terry had suffered a “cardiac event” and confirmed he had a pre-existing medical condition.
Quince Orchard High School’s principal sent a letter to the community to alert everyone to the fight last month.
Carole Working, the principal at Quince Orchard High School, said the following over the weekend:
"For those of you who knew Tyler, we ask that you remember and celebrate his passion for football, his love of his family and friends, and his great big infectious smile. For those of you who did not know him, we ask that you support Tyler’s friends and family during this time of loss.
It is very difficult for all of us to face the death of a young person. Tomorrow a team of psychologists, counselors, and pupil personnel workers will be available to provide counseling and support to students as needed."
Terry was an outside linebacker and tight end for his high school football team and had recently made a commitment to playing at Monmouth University in New Jersey.
"The thoughts and prayers of the Monmouth Football Family go out to the Terry Family during this very difficult time," said Monmouth Head Coach Kevin Callahan. "Words cannot express the sorrow that we feel for their loss. We are proud to say that Tyler will always be a Monmouth Hawk."
Terry helped Quince Orchard High School to a 13-2 record in 2017 and a second straight state final appearance.
Terry planned on majoring in accounting in college.