Not Playing Around: Grieving Mom Saving Lives

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PLANO — Karen Scrah was just like every other mom going to pick up her son from football practice at Plano East High School.

“I went around to the field house and I was approached by a police officer and at that point I knew it was something serious,” Scrah said.

Her 16-year-old son Zachary collapsed on the field from cardiac arrest. He died in the hospital later that day.

“It was just devastating,” she said.

No one knew Zachary suffered from a heart disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. A simple heart screening could have saved his life.

“That`s the worst part… because he would have been here today.”

His mom is able to keep going because she created Zachary 4 Life, a non-profit that is raising awareness about sudden cardiac arrest and providing life saving machines and low-cost heart screenings to teen athletes — like Zachary.

Technicians check to see that the heart is opening up, and there are no abnormalities in the side.

At Walgreens on Wednesday, screenings from a cardiologist that usually cost hundreds of dollars were just $55.

For one mom, this is about saving just one life.

Living 4 Zachary has helped get 300 kids screened in the past month, while 3,000 kids have been screened since Zachary died.

“The awareness that we’ve raised has just been really helpful through the grieving process,” Scrah said.