Community comes together to spread awareness 1 year after Texas teen’s sudden death

Texas

DENTON, Texas (KETK/KXAS) – Isabella Lohr who has been in Girl Scouts for years needed to complete a ‘Gold Award’ project to get her next level.

Lohr picked a project that was close to her heart after her friend.

“It’s definitely more than something I feel like I have to do,” Lohr told NBCDFW.com. “It’s something that I want to do.”

Lohr honored the memory of her friend, Dylan Dorrell, by organizing a 5K fun run called #runforDylan.

“I’ve known him since I was probably about 2 years old,” Lohr said. “He was really kind-hearted. He had an open heart.”

On Aug. 13, 2020, Dorrell’s heart stopped while he was at a cross country practice for Guyer High School in Denton.

“He said ‘Ms. Dorrell, you need to get to the hospital. Your son has no pulse and isn’t breathing,'” Lisa, Dylan’s mom said. “They worked on him for about 45 minutes, but they just could not get his pulse back.”

Dylan was 17 when he died of sudden cardiac arrest. After further review for a cause of death, the family learned Dylan had developed scar tissue on his heart. They believed it was from when he caught pneumonia as a baby and when he was in the fourth grade.

Lisa told NBCDFW that those where the only two times Dylan had ever been sick.

“It’s been a long road,” Dylan’s father Gus Dorrell said through tears to NBCDFW. “To see this little angel come in and just kinda say ‘I want to help,’ how do you say no to that?”

She and her husband said both of their boys were screened in the past for heart issues before playing sports.

The family said Dylan’s scaring wouldn’t have appeared in the test, but still are advocating for others to get their hearts screened.

“And again testing wouldn’t have saved Dylan, but it may save somebody else,” his mother said.

The RunforDylan.com website has a link for youth heart screenings at Braswell High School.

Lohr bought the domain name runfordylan.com that was given to the family and built the website for what she hopes will be an annual 5K fun run.

“So through this project, I want his memory to last,” Lohr said told NBCDFW.com. “I want to help people get heart screenings so this won’t happen again.”

Dylan’s family spoke to the city of Denton to try to have computerized AED (automated external defibrillator) machines at city parks.

“Every morning I just think ‘one’,” Lisa said. “If we could save one parent from going through what we’re going through, just one, then it would make sense of what happened.”

“Obviously we can’t help Dylan. We can’t bring him back,” Gus Dorrell said. “But the fact that we can help other people under his name is what’s going to keep us going.”

The #runforDylan will be held on Nov. 6 in Argyle and the coordinators hope to make this an annual event. Lohr is still looking for sponsors and volunteers to help. For more information or to sign up, click here.

In addition to the website, his parents created a gofundme account to pay it forward to helping others get tested and also a scholarship on behalf of Dylan.

Other’s are also helping raise money for the cause. Nicole Jones, the owner of Moms Making Mums has added green ribbons that say #runfordylan and will use part of the proceeds for the scholarship.

“When I heard about her son’s passing, it really struck a chord with me because I am also a mom of three boys,” Jones said.

The #runforDylan Foundation has given out six $500 scholarships and eight $250 scholarships.

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