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Gregori High School Student Collapses, Dies During P.E. Class

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A grieving Salida family wants answers in their 16-year-old son's death.

Andy Vazquez collapsed and died in P.E. class at Gregori High School in Modesto on Monday afternoon.

On Tuesday, grief counselors were on hand consoling students and staff, but Andy Vazquez's father believes his son could have been saved.

Heartfelt messages written on candles surround the Vazquez's Salida home, as loved ones grieve for 16-year-old Andy Vazquez.

"That’s the worst day of my life … as soon as they call me, I knew he was … something was wrong with my son,” Alberto Vazquez, Andy's father said.

Alberto Vazquez said his son was in P.E. class at Gregori High School when he suddenly collapsed.

"The school to the emergency room is about three miles, and I don’t know why it takes [sic] one hour to take to the hospital," Alberto Vazquez said.

He said he's been trying to get answers from school administrators.

He said Andy’s teachers and principal knew the teen was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect when he was born,

“Since the first day he was born, we knew that his heart was broken,” Alberto Vazquez said.

Just two years ago, Andy had open heart surgery. The teen who loved all things sports was told by his doctors not to play football because of his condition. The family says Andy wasn't currently on the team.

"I just want to find out the truth. Because I don’t want this [to] happen to any other kid," Alberto Vazquez said.

Modesto City Schools released the following statement:

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the student's family, friends, and the Gregori High School community. While confidentiality laws prevent us from discussing specific details, we assure families that the safety of our students continues to be our primary concern.”

FOX40 caught up with the district spokeswoman at the high school.

FOX40 asked Becky Fortuna about Alberto Vazquez’s claims, but she wouldn't comment.

“Unfortunately, I cannot. I have not spoke with the father so I don’t have any details to share about that,” Fortuna, a spokeswoman with the Modesto City Schools said.

The grieving father said his son complained about his P.E. teacher on multiple occasions.


"This teacher is going to kill me one day because I want to take some rest and he don’t let me … he doesn't let me take,” Alberto Vazquez said his son told him.

Surrounded by the memories of his pride and joy, Andy's father moves forward with his grief, the heart break of losing his son.

"Now my son is gone. I don’t have my son, he’s gone forever," Alberto Vazquez said.

FOX40 also asked Modesto City School about the allegation against Vazquez’s P.E. teacher. They said they could not comment because of privacy concerns.