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He helped his opponent finish a race after he collapsed, giving up his own chance at qualifying

Brandon Schutt came to the rescue of his competitor Blake Cerveny when he fell to the ground after his legs cramped up.

He helped his opponent finish a race after he collapsed, giving up his own chance at qualifying
Image Source: https://www.preprunningnerd.com/

At a 3.1-mile track and field race event, Brandon Schutt, a senior at Bellevue East High School in Virginia, spotted his opponent from Omaha Burke High School, Blake Cerveny, fall to the ground after his legs cramped up. With less than 100 meters to go, Schutt knew he would qualify if he just kept going. However, giving up his shot at qualifying for the upcoming state meet, he ran up to his competitor to give him a helping hand. Arm in arm, the two runners crossed the finish line. In fact, Schutt made sure Cerveny crossed the finish line first, giving him a faster time, Good News Network reports.



 

Jay Slagle, a citizen journalist, was the first person to break the story on his blog Prep Running Nerd. "I saw Blake zig-zagging with 100 meters to go, a classic sign that his legs were about to give," he shared. "As I kept my camera trained on him, I saw Brandon come into the picture. I began whispering, ‘No, no, no,’ to myself, because at the time, I didn’t know the Good Samaritan rule had been changed." The Good Samaritan rule refers to runners who aid their competitors. This year, rules were changed so that the Good Samaritan would not be penalized.



 

He continued, "This is the first time I’ve ever seen an athlete stop his race and work so hard to help his fellow competitor across the finish line. Perhaps more impressively, Brandon had virtually no time to think about whether he should help or not; he reacted so quickly that he did it instinctively." Perhaps Schutt empathized with his fellow runner; three weeks prior, he himself had been unable to complete a race. The runner stated in an interview with KETV-7, "I felt awful about not finishing. I felt like I was letting my teammates down and I was letting myself down—so ultimately I just made the call [to help him]."



 

After Schutt helped him cross the finish line, Cerveny was taken to the medical tent where he rejoined his teammates for a post-race cool-down. Thankfully, the runner was not seriously injured. He had only been suffering from extreme muscle fatigue. He was therefore soon able to get up and leave the tent by himself. Meanwhile, what was an otherwise uncredited act of kindness quickly went viral online after a local news outlet picked up the story. The news outlet even arranged a reunion for the runners. Although they had competed in five races together, they were absolute strangers to each other.



 

Dozens expressed how proud they were of Schutt, most notably his head track coach, Rachel Carraher. "Brandon is an excellent person," she affirmed. "He is really kind and a great leader on the team." You can watch his reunion with Cerveny here.



 

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