Fit footballer dies from heart condition

A FIT and healthy father-of-two died from an unknown heart condition after being taken ill during a football match, an inquest heard.

A FIT and healthy father-of-two died from an unknown heart condition after being taken ill during a football match, an inquest heard.

Wayne Barker, of Bruisyard Road, Rendham, was playing for Ufford FC against Saxmundham FC on August 23 when he collapsed while leaving the pitch.

Greater Suffolk coroner Dr Peter Dean said the game was being watched by the 35-year-old's twin brother Dean and Wayne's father-in-law.

Wayne had felt unwell midway through the second half and requested that he came off the pitch.


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As he did so he suddenly collapsed. The referee and a community responder tried to resuscitate Wayne, while they waited for paramedics to arrive.

Although an ambulance took him to the accident and emergency department of Ipswich Hospital his life was unable to be saved despite frantic attempts to keep him alive.

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The inquest was told that Wayne Barker's family said he was a fit man, who used to go to the gym twice a week. As far as they were concerned he was in good health and it was a great shock when he collapsed so suddenly.

Dr Dean recorded a finding of cardiac arrhythmia due to coronary artery erosion and thrombosis, the underlying cause for which could not be established.

After the hearing Mr Barker's family thanked everyone who had contributed towards the thousands of pounds raised for the trust fund set up for Wayne's children, Jake, 11 and Liberty, seven.

They also paid tribute to Mr Barker.

His brother Dean said: “Wayne was a fun-loving and out-going. He lived life to the full.”

Their mother, Carol, who attended the inquest with her husband Royston, said: “Wayne lived for the moment.”

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