Baton Rouge, LA – Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Cadet Immanuel Washington passed away on July 19, after he collapsed during physical training at the academy the day prior.
Cadet Washington, 38, had just completed a 2.5-mile run and was in a “cool down period” when he fell to the ground, the Department of Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries said in a press release.
Agents at the academy administered CPR until Cadet Washington was rushed to a local hospital.
He was placed on life support in the Ochsner Medical Center’s intensive care unit, but passed away the following day.
It was unclear whether or not the temperature may have been a factor in the in Cadet Washington’s sudden collapse, and East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner Beau Clark is continuing the investigation into his cause of death, The Advocate reported.
Clark did not observe any signs of trauma to the fallen cadet’s body.
“Our hearts are broken by this tragedy,” Department of Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Secretary Jack Montoucet said in the press release. “From the accounts I received, Mr. Washington was an excellent cadet and an even better person.”
“The whole Wildlife and Fisheries family offer our prayers for his wife, his children, his family and friends,” Montoucet continued. “This is a loss for Louisiana.”
Cadet Washington, who previously served as an officer with the Youngsville Police Department, was in his third week of training at the academy at the time of his death.
“On July 1st Immanuel left our Department to pursue his dream of becoming a Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries agent with the well wishes and blessings of our entire Department,” the Youngsville Police Department said in a Facebook post. “All that knew him were always left with a joyous feeling after making contact with Immanuel. He had a contagious smile that would crack even the grouchiest of people.”
“[He] will be sorely missed by everyone at our Department,” the agency continued. “Please keep his family and friends in your Prayers. We have from here, Friend.”
Youngsville Police Chief Rickey Boudreaux told KLFY that even though he fully supported Cadet Washington’s dream of joining the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, he was keeping his former position available for him back at the police department – just in case.
“I knew that’s the type of person I wanted back in my department, Chief Boudreaux said.
Cadet Washington was also a former University of Louisiana-Lafayette basketball player from 2001 to 2003, The Advocate reported.
He leaves behind his wife, 3-year-old son, and one-year-old daughter, according to the state agency.
A fundraiser has been established to assist Cadet Washington’s family in the wake of their loss.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Cadet Immanuel Washington, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.