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Water polo player to be buried Monday

A 16-year-old Palm Desert boy who collapsed and died after water polo practice will be buried tonight in Cathedral City.

Palm Desert High School student Christian Fernandez Morales was found unresponsive in or near the pool area at Shadow Hills High School in Indio about 9 p.m. last Tuesday. He was taken to John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 10:27 p.m., according to the coroner’s office.

The cause of death had not been made public as of today. Morales was at practice for a summer league through USA Water Polo when he collapsed.

Burial is set for 6 p.m. at Forest Lawn, 69-855 E. Ramon Road.

A funeral service was held Sunday in Cathedral City.

More than $10,000 for funeral costs was raised through donations from around the Coachella Valley and at a car wash at Palm Desert High School on Saturday, according to former girls’ water polo and boys’ swimming coach Janeen Bahr.

Robert Hicks, principal of Palm Desert High, said the school was not yet commenting on Morales’ death because Morales was at a USA Water Polo event.

USA Water Polo CEO Christopher Ramsey stated Friday that Morales’ death “is obviously a tragic occurrence, and our hearts go out to his family. I believe we are best served waiting for the medical examination to be completed before further comment.”

A Christian Morales Memorial Fund has been set up at FirstBank in theCoachella Valley. Those who want to donate can give the names Christian or Blanca Morales, or account No. 8564, or write checks payable to Blanca Morales, Christian’s mother.

KESQ News Team


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