Blood mystery sidelines AHS runner Jon Severy | AspenTimes.com
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Blood mystery sidelines AHS runner Jon Severy

Aspen’s Jon Severy, the defending state high school cross country champion, likely will not return to Denver to defend his state title this weekend.

Severy, also a state champion in track, was hospitalized earlier this week with a blood-related problem. He remains at Aspen Valley Hospital while doctors continue additional tests on the Aspen High School senior.

According to his longtime coach, Mark Barbour, last week Severy experienced nosebleed problems and felt under the weather as he prepared for the Regional Cross Country Championships at Rangely.



Severy started last weekend’s 5K race, but he apparently blacked out, stumbled and fell about a mile and a quarter into the course.

First aid was administered and Severy was treated and then returned to Aspen with his teammates.




Back in Aspen, Severy was hospitalized on Sunday after initial blood tests concerned doctors. Early problems arose with his red blood cell count and platelets, according to Barbour.

But treatment apparently has controlled the red blood cells and platelets. Concern now relates to the white blood cell count, a key part of the body’s immune system, according to Barbour.

The AHS runner had hoped to be ready to join his Aspen teammates at the State Cross Country Championships on Saturday at Kent Denver High School – the site where he won the Class 3A state championships last year, just a month after his older brother Chris was killed in a bicycling accident.

Chris was an All-American runner and honor student at the University of Colorado and a former prep state champion at Aspen High School.

Barbour said Jon Severy’s condition will continue to be evaluated, while any chance of his competing this weekend rests in the hands of the medical experts – as well as Jon himself.

The coach added that he would need 100 percent medical clearance before he would even consider allowing Jon to race on Saturday.

“He, of course, wants to run. He is itching to get out of the hospital. He’s bored … he isn’t one who can sit still,” Barbour said.

“But it’s 100 percent or not at all,” he stressed of the medical clearance.

A final decision regarding Severy’s participation in the race may not be made until Saturday morning.


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