USC trainers who helped save the life of freshman forward Vince Iwuchukwu last summer were recognized this week by The California Athletic Trainers’ Association.

Erin Tillman, Jon Yonamine, and Lauren Crawford received the CATA Lifesaver Award at the 13th Annual CATA Clinical Symposium last week.

Yonamine began working at USC in 2008, and has been the basketball program’s head trainer for a decade. Tillman and Crawford both had focuses elsewhere, but they lept to action when Iwuchukwu’s heart stopped during an informal team practice on July 1, 2022.

They performed CPR and rushed him to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Iwuchukwu was sidelined after the incident and his Trojan debut was delayed until January, but he’s made a full recovery and become an integral piece of the rotation for coach Andy Enfield.

In a 10-minute video shared by USC last month, Iwuchukwu and several USC coaches spoke about what happened. During it, Iwuchukwu made sure to shout out the training staff.

“I appreciate all the training staff and the coaching staff for doing what they did,” Iwuchukwu said. “We’ve had a close bond from the whole event happening. I can’t thank them enough for what they did… I mean they’re superheroes. Superheroes save people’s lives and that’s what they did.”