ITHACA, Wis. - On team picture day, Jeanna Lorenz can't help but feel like there's someone missing.
"Sunshine or petting the dog, it doesn't matter what it is. Everything reminds you of him," she said.
Her son, Brandon Scott Lorenz, was a senior at Ithaca High School. He ran track and field.
"He was a great son."
He died in November.
"He was fine that day," she said. "We had a big thanksgiving dinner and they said he had a seizure in the middle of the night. All they could find is he had mild carditis. He had a virus that went into his heart that wasn't diagnosed. And when he had that, it made his heart stop."
Jeanna is in her eighth year coaching Ithaca track and field.20071100
"I almost talked myself out of doing it this year but I thought, I better do it for him."
"It would have to be hard, you know, losing a kid, and he was on the team," Ithaca senior Clayton Prouty said. "I know she was really looking forward to it because he was going to do well this year, too. That's another reason I want to do it. Not just for him, but also for Jeanna."
"I just want to do good for him," senior Nate Houser said. "Growing up, I always tried to be better so I could beat him and now I'm trying to be better for him."
The best thing they can do for him is to repeat as conference champs, without him.
"That is our goal again for this year," Lorenz said. "I think we can do it even though we'll be short a few points. But someone else will have to step up again."
The team wears yellow wristbands at practice that read "in loving memory." They also wear a red sock at every meet in his honor. The whole school also wears shirts that say "BLT," Brandon's nickname, and an acronym for "Brandon Lives Through Us."