A North Texas high school is mourning the sudden death of a 16-year-old football player who reportedly collapsed and died in his twin brother's arms while playing tag.
"Today our hearts are broken. Please keep the Fighting Farmer community in your prayers as we mourn the loss of a student athlete," the Lewisville High School football program tweeted Saturday.
U.S. & World
Friends and family honored the sophomore student-athlete Sunday night.
Dozens gathered at Central Park in Lewisville for a balloon release in memory of Deshaud Williams.
Students carried red balloons and hugged Williams' twin brother and mother, Razel Sheppard.
"His heart couldn't take no more and he died in his brother's hands," Sheppard said through tears. "I appreciate everyone coming out here."
The teen was a defensive tackle on the Fighting Farmers' junior varsity football team.
His twin, Dashaud, said they had been running and playing tag in a Lewisville parking lot Friday night.
"We started jogging a little bit more and he was like, 'Da, I can’t breathe,'" Dashaud Williams said. "I was like, 'You good? Come on, we're going to get home.' And he was like, 'I can't breathe. I'm about to pass out.' And I ran to him and he fell to his knees and fell on his back."
Williams said he called 911 and was with his brother as an ambulance arrived.
The family said the student-athlete underwent a physical this school year which included a heart test.
Everything, they said, appeared normal.
"Yes, a big mystery," Sheppard said. "He's never been sick. He was a healthy all-around kid. Hopefully (we'll) get answers."
While some answers are hard to come, what is clear is that No. 77 was loved.
"He would motivate you," said friend Darren Johnson, 17. "When he was tired, we would pick him up. When we were tired, he would pick us up. There was no better friend you could have."
Sunday night, it was their turn to lift Williams up in prayer.
"He'll always be in our hearts," Johnson said.
While Williams' family suspected he may have suffered cardiac arrest, the official cause and manner of death was pending an autopsy.
Williams is originally from Cleveland, Ohio. His family would like to take his remains back to Ohio.