Boy, 10, collapses and dies playing in the snow

Joshua Houlgate
Joshua Houlgate
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A TEN-year-old died suddenly while playing in the snow with friends near his home in West Yorkshire.

Joshua Houlgate collapsed in the Smawthorne area of Castleford on Sunday afternoon, having complained of feeling unwell at the home of his friend, Connor Thompson, nine.

Connor’s father Simon fought for half an hour to revive the unconscious boy, performing chest compressions on advice from the 999 operator.

Joshua’s mother Sara Houlgate, 35, was alerted and she also attempted mouth-to-mouth resucitation in a bid to save her only child’s life.

The boy’s father Jeffrey Houlgate also arrived on the scene as attempts were made to save the youngster.

Joshua was taken by ambulance to Pindefields Hospital at Wakefield, where he was pronounced dead.

His grandmother Rose, 63, said: “He went out to play as fit as a fiddle. It is just unbelievable.

“He was a loving boy who loved his dog Jack. Jack would try to get out of his way because Josh wanted to hug him all the time.”

His mother Sara said: “All we know at the moment is that it appears as though he has had a fit.”

Mrs Houlgate hailed Mr Thompson’s efforts. She said: “I can’t thank him enough for trying so hard to save my son’s life.”

Mrs Houlgate said Joshua was autistic and had suffered from epilepsy as a younger boy. He had not had a fit for two years.

Joshua was a pupil at Smawthorne Henry Moore Primary School, Castleford.

Headteacher Julie Murray, said yesterday: “We are very saddened by the tragic death of Joshua and send our sincere sympathies to his family and friends.”