The condition of Arizona high school swim coach Kerry Croswhite has deteriorated as he continues a battle against COVID-19 in a Phoenix hospital.
According to an update on Friday morning posted by his wife Laure Croswhite on a Caring Bridge page, a nurse has told the family that the latest signs of Croswhite’s recovery are not positive.
Doctors removed Croswhite from the sedation medicine that was given to him to deal with the discomfort of ventilation, but continued to be unresponsive. His blood pressure has continued to need to be supported with medicine as it has dropped very low.
We please need immediate prayers for Kerry. Spoke with his night nurse, Rebecca, and she said she needed to be honest with me. They have him maxed out on blood pressure medicine because it is so low. He has been off sedation meds and he is not responsive. She said things could turn real quickly for him. Please pray my prayer warriors. We can’t lose him!
She followed this with another post at 5:15 on Friday morning that reads:
Kerry is about the same all through the night according to Rebecca his night nurse. We called a few times throughout the night and we received the same report. He continues to be unresponsive and needing a lot of blood pressure support. She was going to check with the doctor to see if they could give him even more BP meds. We asked if he could receive maybe another convalescent plasma, steroid round, anything to help him. She said she hasn’t heard of that happening before, but would put my question into the doctor when he rounded today. Bristyn, Dusten, and I stayed together and prayed through the night. We know so many of you did the same and we thank you for that. He’s still in this and continuing his fight. We continue to stay positive and pray. It is our only choice. We love him dearly. #lungsoofsteele
Croswhite first became sick with fevers, aches and chills on June 22nd. After isolating himself in his home and administering over-the-counter remedies, he went to get a coronavirus test, whcih came back negative.
On June 30th, Croswhite told his family that “he knew it had moved into his chest and the cough was worsening,” while his blood oxygen saturation levels were dipping.
On July 3, he was taken to Banner Desert hospital, reluctantly, where testing showed that he had double pneumonia and was positive for the coronavirus.
His condition worsened in the hospital, and he was moved to the ICU on July 7. A day later, July 8, he was put on a ventilator. During that process, he went into cardiopulmonary arrest.
Medical staff was able to revive him and complete the ventilation process, and his condition has stabilized, though challenges continue. On Thursday, his potassium levels increased and he was considered to be in acute renal failure, according to his wife Laurie Croswhite, and has begun kidney dialysis.
Friday’s latest update to a carinbridge.com site being kept by Laurie Croswhite delivered good news. His nurses reported that Thursday night was his “best night” and he had no major negative event. While he is still on the ventilator, some of the other machines have been removed.
A GoFundMe page to help support the medical costs of this has raised over $42,000 as of posting.
Kerry Croswhite has been a coach at Chandler High School for 17 years, and is famous in the local community for playing the bagpipes at many of the school’s sporting events, including as ‘walkup music’ before his swimmers’ big races.
He has also been cited at least twice for saving swimmers’ life in pool emergencies (read more here).
The Chandler High School boys placed 11th at the 2019 Arizona Division I (big school) High School State Championship meet, while the Chandler girls tied for 9th. In 2017, the Chandler girls were the state runners-up. The high school is the alma mater of a number of college swimmers, including 2019-2020 USC co-captain Mark Jurek, who still holds 5 individual records at the school.
Arizona is one of a number of states that have seen the most dramatic increase in positive tests for coronavirus. On June 1, the state had a 7-day moving average of 509 new daily cases; by Thursday, that was up to over 3,000 daily new cases. Over that same period, the number of average daily deaths has more than quadrupled, from around 16 per day to over 60.