Never Forget

Never Forget

by Susan Neuhalfen

Mary Betzhold loves the sight of an airsoft pellet. The day before she lost her son Alex to an undiagnosed heart condition in 2012, he had been playing with his friends doing something he loved: shooting his airsoft gun.

“My first day back to work he left me a pellet in the back of the classroom to find,” said Mary. “I found two the next day.”

Now she sees them everywhere, believing that Alex has left them there to remind her to never forget.

She has kept that promise in spades as once again she and the Argyle community come together for Shoot for the Stars, an all day family fun event held at Argyle High School in remembrance of Alex. There’s something for the whole family, from 3 on 3 basketball tournaments, the Unicef one-mile color run, games, booths, food trucks and one more thing: free heart screenings courtesy of Living for Zachary.

A student athlete dies every three days due to sudden cardiac arrest but in some cases this is preventable. If your child is between 12-22, have him or her take the test. Even if you can’t make it to Shoot for the Stars, Baylor Heart Hospital in Denton conducts the tests for only $55. This isn’t something that shows up on a physical or routine exam. Mary Betzhold has spent the last five years urging parents to get the test done, because she’ll never forget.

The town of Argyle and the Argyle High School basketball team will never forget either. Alex loved basketball and was an excellent player. This year he would have been a senior. They had a jersey printed up for Alex with his number. They cut part of the net from their winning game for him. When they lost the semi-final tournament by one point, I had to ask Mary if she thought the outcome would have been different had Alex been there.

“Funny you say that. I got to the parking lot at the Alamodome and there was an airsoft pellet right by the car,” she said. “So he was there.”

Making sure that we never forget.

p.s. Reservations for heart screenings
are required. To schedule, call 469-815-3565 option 4.

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