High School Football

Columbia-area quarterback upbeat after open-heart surgery

Richland Northeast quarterback Josh Boyd
Richland Northeast quarterback Josh Boyd RNE Athletics

Richland Northeast High School quarterback Josh Boyd’s open surgery was a success, according to RNE coach Bennett Weigle.

Weigle and several RNE players visited Boyd at MUSC in Charleston on Saturday, a day after the quarterback had open-heart surgery.

“Surgery was a success. Visited with him today. He was talking and laughing just like normal Josh,” Weigle said Saturday night.

Boyd suffered a heart attack while playing a pick-up basketball game Wednesday at Sonny’s SportsPlex in Columbia. A group of firemen were playing with Boyd and his friends and immediately went into action.

Columbia Fire Captain Kareem Spain was one of those there and performed chest compressions, according to WIS TV.

“Those guys could have played anywhere that day, but this our first time playing at this gym and I think it’s just the grace of God that we was at the right place at the right time, and I was just glad we was there,” Spain told the TV station.

There has been an outpouring of support for Boyd in the Midlands community and around the state. A GoFundme page has been established to help with the Boyd’s medical bills. Almost $3,000 has been raised so far.

RNE carried Boyd’s No. 6 jersey out to the coin toss Friday at South Pointe. South Pointe cheerleaders made a sign in honor of Boyd when the Stallions ran out of the field. Fans at Ridge View High School, another Richland 2 school, made a sign in Boyd’s honor for its game against Westwood.

This season, Boyd has thrown for 437 yards and four touchdowns and also rushed for 158 yards. Boyd also is a member of RNE’s basketball team.