A rising high school junior died recently while attending a cheer camp at Texas A&M.
Callie Mitchell (16) was airlifted from the campus, where she died later, to Texas Children’s Hospital. A coach had performed CPR.
According to KHOU, Mitchell will begin her junior school year at Morton Ranch High School, Katy, Texas where her mother works as an assistant principal.
A coach had called Callie’s parents a few days earlier to ask if she was having “a problem getting up this morning.” Michelle Donahue said that Callie “never” woke up in the morning.
The parents drove their daughter to the campus where they were informed that CPR was required.
Donahue said to KHOU that “if it weren’t for the coach, we wouldn’t have had the opportunity to say goodbye.”
Scott Donahue said that Mitchell had long QT Syndrome, a conduction problem that affects the electrical system that controls the heartbeat. New York Post reports that the condition is often inherited.
Scott believes Mitchell “probably” suffered a cardiac event that was caused because of the condition. Electrocardiograms (EKGs) are used to detect long QT. They are optional in Texas during athletic physicals.
Mitchell’s dad is now urging all parents to have their children get EKGs.
“For all the other parents, you’ll know that they have physicals every single year. EKGs do not form part of a standard physical. Scott advised, “Get an EKG.”
Mitchell’s mother described her as “like sunshine”, who started cheering when she was two years old.
Scott said, “I’ve always wanted to be friends with everyone and anyone.”
Her obituary says, “Callie was an energetic young woman with many interests.” She was a cheerleader and brought joy to everyone around her. She loved to read and spent time with her family and friends. Callie had a soft spot in her heart also for her French Bulldogs, Eugene & Ruby.
Callie was a Taylor Swift devotee who loved to drive her car with the windows down, enjoying every moment of life. Her passion for pink reflected her lively personality. Callie loved the taste of Chick-Fil-A, Starbucks, and Free Birds. She also enjoyed queso at any restaurant.
“Callie was a special person who had a connection to time. She would make a dream at 11:11 am, believing in the magic that the moment brought. She was the energetic teenager who insisted on sitting at the front of the church. This reflected her strong faith and her commitment to her belief.
She adorned the car, “Faith,” with a cross that hung from the rearview mirror to symbolize her unwavering dedication. Callie, a natural leader, attended Great Adventure Camp, where she took on the role of Leader in Training. She was excited about her plans to become a counselor there. She wanted to become a child psychiatrist, which reflected her caring and compassionate nature. Callie was a member of NCL Star Katy where she enjoyed volunteering in the community.
According to her mother, Mitchell left for cheer camp on July 24th.