Condolences are pouring in for much-loved school teacher Antony Stott, who died after collapsing at a soccer game in Thirroul on Saturday.
Mr Stott, who taught maths at Moss Vale High, was playing for Thirroul Thunder when he collapsed about 10 minutes into the game against Sandon Point.
Bystanders used a defibrillator until paramedics arrived and started CPR. He was loaded into an ambulance just before 4pm and continued to undergo CPR en route to Wollongong Hospital, however could not be revived.
Kevin Stott, who was by his brother’s side when he died, described him as a “clever, patient and kind soul”.
“He always had so much time for everyone,” he said in a statement to the Mercury.
“He was so fond of his students and loved teaching. Anyone who ever had the pleasure of meeting him will never forget his well-timed and witty sense of humour.
“He touched the lives of so many, all over the world. He will be sorely missed as a teacher, a friend, a boyfriend, a brother and a son.”
Thirroul Football Club issued a statement on Saturday night thanking those who helped Mr Stott on the field and offering its sympathies to his family and friends.
Club president Lindsay Hodda said Mr Stott was playing in the right side defender’s position and was waiting for a goal kick when he collapsed.
“The opposition player, who used to play for us, noticed he was standing in an unusual place, then saw him lean forward and fall over,” he said.
Mr Hodda said Mr Stott received immediate help from team mates and witnesses.
“We’ve got two nurses and a couple of lifesavers either in the team or as supporters and they’ve come to his aid straight away when they realised he wasn’t moving,” he said.
“The response was immediate. They worked on him until the paramedics arrived. They [the paramedics] said there was nothing more that could have been done for him.”
Mr Hodda said Mr Stott had joined the team playing at the start of the season in the Community League Division 2 competition after moving from the Southern Highlands to Corrimal, where he lived with his brother, Kevin.
Mr Hodda said Kevin was called to the grounds as soon as his brother went into cardiac arrest and was with him when he died.
It is understood the boys’ parents are currently in the UK.
Mr Hodda said counselling had been offered to all those involved in Saturday’s tragedy.
Meantime, former students and friends of Mr Stott and strangers moved by the tragedy have taken to social media to post tributes to the 26-year-old.
“Mr Stott thanks for being an awesome maths teacher, you will be missed,” former student Joshua Truscott wrote.
Another ex-student, Shenaue Murchie said, “Fly high Mr Stott, keep teaching up there doing what you love.”
A Moss Vale High School newsletter from earlier this year said Mr Stott has been appointed to a permanent teaching position after acting in a temporary role for 12 months.
Former student India Wallbridge said she’d not been taught by Mr Stott but remembers him well.
“He always seemed like a really nice guy,” she wrote on the Mercury’s website.
“I'm so sorry for this tragic loss and I send my sympathies to the Stott family.”
Several sporting clubs also offered their condolences.
“Taken way too soon playing the game we all love. Condolences to family Antony Stott...RIP,” Wests Illawarra FC wrote.
Northern Districts Cricket Club also extended its sympathies, saying “our thoughts are with Antony's family and teammates during this awful time”.
Meantime, the Wollongong Wolves held a minute’s silence for Mr Stott before their game against Blacktown on Sunday afternoon.
Sorry for your loss. RIP Antony Kerry, Eastlake Berkeley
RIP Antony Anne Percy, Thirroul
Blessings to Antony and his family Kelly Small, 2570
Thinking of your family at this sad time and sending my heartfelt condolences. Angela, Kanahooka
RIP Antony Nadine, Coniston
Sending light and strength to your family. RIP Antony Roshan, Corrimal
Taken way too soon, RIP Antony. Condolences to family, friends & team mates. Kathy Gallagher, Dapto
Deepest sympathy to his family and friends. Diane, Windang
Rip taken way too early loving the game he loved. Tony, Figtree
Condolences to Antonys family, friends and team mates xxxxx RIP Antony Rits, Dapto
My heart aches for the family and friends. Tracey, Thirroul
How sad and tragic. Life taken way too early. Carmel, Wollongong
Wow , how sad, so young, rip mate Joe Perko, Lake Heights
Mr Scott thanks for being an awesome maths teacher you will be missed. Rip Joshua Truscott, miss vale
You will be missed dearly by all of us at miss vale high school and of course your family, fly high mr story, keep teaching up there doing what you love Shenae Murchie, Moss Vale
Deeply horrified someone passed on in the name of football.....Deep condolences to the family and thirroul club Dave Smolenaars, Wollongong
Taken way too soon playing the game we all love. Condolences to family Antony Stott...RIP Wests Illawarra FC, Unanderra
I always saw Mr Stott walking through the corridors at school and he always seemed like a really nice guy. He never taught me or anyone in my year, but we all knew who he was. I'm so sorry for this tragic loss and I send my deepest sympathies to the Stott family. India Wallbridge, Wollongong
You where the best Math teacher i ever had, you will be missed stotty Sascha Marold, Bundanoon
A sad day for thirroul thunder soccer club, a great fella will be missed greatly. Dean Gallagher, Corrimal
Sorry for your loss :( rest in peace Ash, Maroubra
Thoughts are with his family and friends. What a tragedy. Vashti, Figtree
Very sad RIP, condolences to Antony's family and friends Sue Stokes, Nowra
RIP Mr Stott Taken To Soon Jemma Grech, Bateau Bay
RIP mate, playing the game you loved. Condolences to the Family. Tony, Wollongong
Rip lost to young so sad for the ones he has left behind ❤️😢 Beryl Ramsay, Albion Park Rail
RIP Mr. Stott, you were an awesome teacher, we had many great conversations while I attended mossvale high. Fly high and dream the eternal dream Kerry Enright, Goulburn
RIP and deepest sympathy to your family and friends. Was my late husbands favourite team. Robyn, Kanahooka
Thank you for being an amazing math teacher to year 12, just like parsnips, you were always a treat. Year 12 veggie math will never be the same without your wonderful smile Moss Vale 'veggie' math 2577
So sad and may you rest in peace my thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends and students Tanya, Illawarra
Mr Stott, an amazing teacher to me and all the students at moss vale high 😔 it was a pleasure having you at our school sir. you will forever be in our hearts 😣💛💛💛 Ella-rose Burke, moss came
A Condolences to the family at this sad time and may Antony rest in peace! So sad 😰 Amanda Hernandez, Shellharbour
Mr Stott. I only had you once or twice last year for Maths. You were the most amazing, coolest and the funniest teacher ever. You never gave up on us. It was such pleasure having you as a teacher. You will be missed by me and so many other people. Fly High Mr Stott💛😞 Arya Sigdel Moss Vale, 2577
Thinkin of your family at this hard time , rip young man xx Natalie Woonona
I'll miss seeing you at school, your words of encouragement, your advice and your caring nature will never be forgotten. You were a fantastic teacher to me and the rest of year 12 as well as every other year. Your kind nature will never go unnoticed by everyone at Moss Vale High School and within the Highlands communities. R.I. P Mr Stott, you legend 💞 Chloe Price Moss Vale
Stotty was one the greatest guys I knew. An amazing teacher who was always willing to help and a mate who you could always have a good chat to. RIP legend. Nic Wilson Robertson
Mr Stott, thanks for believing in me. I was lucky I had the pleasure of being in your class. Rest easy😔 Beth-Elise Cochran Bundanoon
I feel for all that have lost a teacher, work mate,team mate friend and most important a brother and son ... R.I.P and guide everyone from above ... Debbie Illawarra
Rip mate fly high Serina Stott, Bulli
Thinking of his family and friends Sharpen Williams, Unanderra
rip mr stott you were a great help to everone at mossy hight my thoughts are with your family and friends you are gone but never forgotten we will all miss you so much😢😭😭😭😯 Jessica Roberts, Moss Vale
One of my all time favourite teachers. He brought such joy to our class his witty sense of humour and total passion for maths. He truly believed in us all and helped where he could. Defiantly gone too soon. Fly high Stotty boy! Isabella Disher, Moss vale
R.I.P taken too soon playing the game he loved condolences to his family and friends Glenn Rivera, Hervey Bay
This is so sad, I heard about this and was shocked. I didn't know you personally, but I'm a teacher and I'm also a footballer - and it's a horrible thing for someone so young - rest in peace. You were obviously well-loved. Matt Walsh, Mount Ousley
RIP. The most patient and amazing maths teacher since the start of year 8. You will be missed. Tess Fraser, Moss Vale
You may be gone but never forgotten. Fly high and dream the eternal dream. My sympathies to the Stott family. You will be missed Mr Stott 😰😭 Tamara Wilson, Moss Vale
Mr Stott, you were and always will be a teacher. Will be missed, and never forgotten ❤️💞😭😭 Melissa, Bowral
r.i.p. young man far to young to go Wendy Ryan, Basin View
Thank you for all these wonderful messages, they are appreciated so much by us all. Antony was my boyfriend of nearly 5 years and was the most wonderfully kind and special person. He brought so much happiness and love to all around him. Thank you again. Laura Leicester, England
Rest in peace, dream the eternal dream Kezzie 2577
General maths won't be the same without you sir...thanks for everything you had taught me Shania Martin, Moss Vale High School
Always enjoyed chatting with you at training and before and after our games mate, can't believe you're gone, it's surreal and so sad, a great lad taken way too early. RIP mate. Ged, Bulli
The Coasters would like to extend their deepest condolences to the club and family of Anthony. We've all been shaken by the news and he will remain in our thoughts and prayers. Coasters FC
Gone too soon. Shell, Dapto
My husband and I have held you, your family and friends in our thoughts since we heard. We promise you will never ever be forgotten. My husband went into cardiac arrest 4 weeks ago to the day also while playing soccer...we have vowed to do all we can to raise awareness for the need of AEDs. Sending all our love. Tammy, Central Coast
The Albion Park Cows FC extends its deepest sympathy to the family, friends and the Thirroul Thunder Team for the very sad loss of Antony. Albion Park Cows FC, Albion Park
Antony, rest easy up there mate. So shocked to read this take care mate, my deepest sympathy to Kev, Mr and Mrs stott xx Nick Best, Bowral
Mr Scott and had our ups and down but he was really good teacher who would listen to you you will always be missed a formal student for moss vale high Kiyla, Roberson
I wish I had've taken the time to thank you in person for all you taught me. You're by far one of the the best teachers I've had and I always looked forward to your class. You will be missed Stotty, sending love to your family and close ones who no doubt are in extreme mourning. Sharon, Moss Vale High School
R.i.p another young man taken too soon. Thoughts are with ur family Amy, Campbelltown
The Illawarra Stallions sends its deepest sympathies the family. May God give bring them the peace that they seek. Illawarra Stallions, Cringila
Mr Stott, you were a great caring young talented man, yiu still had your life ahead of you. You were a great Teacher not only to me but to the rest of the students you taught. R.I.P Mr Stott, youcwill be dearly miss but never forgotten. Melissa Lavender, Moss Vale
Goodbye Mr Stott, you will be missed... R.I.P Ethan, Bundanoon
Best math teacher ever! Rip stotty Lorna Anderson Moss Vale
RIP Antony sending my condolences to his family n friends here and England now fly high just shows how short life can be rip Sam, Bundanoon
Thoughts go out to Antony's friends and family as well as our friends at Thirroul Thunder IFS United Wollongong
This still doesn't feel real to me but you were one of the only teachers that tried to help me. Our math class was probably not the best but we still had some good times and some good laughs with you. R.I.P stotty you will be missed mate and I will return your calculators 💖💖💖💖💖 Zac Keith, Bundanoon
Very sad and shocked to here of Stotty's passing. It was a pleasure to have him as part of our team for the summer. As a new player who did not know anybody, he blended in exceptionally well and became a key player in our team. He was a good, fair and enjoyable person to play with – he will be missed. Condolences to his family and friends. RED DEVILS Summer Soccer, Team Moss Vale
We will all miss you heaps from moss vale high school you were a outstanding teacher who knew what he was doing and was fun and hilarious the school is never going to be the same Lachlan Smith, Moss Vale
fly high angel, helensburg
Hard for our boys to understand, so young a cool teacher and playing the game that they love. But our thoughts are with your family and friends during this deeply sad time Jenny Cubit, Bundanoon
To me, Stotty, you were more than just an amazing maths teacher and football player, to me you were a friend, a person I trusted and knew I could go to if I needed help. You were also my biggest inspiration, and the only person who kept me going maths wise when all I wanted to do was curl into a ball and cry because I didn't understand. I have so many things to thank you for, and I wish I'd said them all earlier, but no one knows the true value of a moment until it becomes a memory... It’s too late now and I'm sorry. I'm sorry for not thanking you earlier, and I'm sorry I wasn't the greatest student. I'm going to miss you, your accent, your smile, your fake hatred at Hugh every lesson... I'm going to miss all of you. I wish it hadn't been you, you were too young to die. But it was you and it hurts... But I'll get through it, we all will. We'll probably never get a teacher as amazing as you, but who knows, maybe one day we'll all make you so, so proud. Thoughts, prayers and love go out to all friends and family. Rest in peace, Sir Mackenzie, Canyonleigh
Mr Stott was a wonderful teacher but no one will forget the amazing Antony Stott Amanda, Bundanoon