IRVING — When Highland Park High School senior Scottie Scheffler was finished after his final round at the HP Byron Nelson Championship on Sunday, he had a special group waiting for him.
They were a group of friends who shared a common bond.
“My family and I have been friends with the Scheffler’s for five or six years,” Mecklin Ragan said. “My younger brother James and Scottie used to play golf together in the Texas Legends Tour."
Mecklin Ragan, along with her brother, James, formed a foundation called Triumph Over Kids Cancer.
“You know, I’m not just representing myself, my family, my foundation, and this institution, but I’m representing the tens of thousands of kids who have died before me,” James Ragan said during a 2013 interview.
Scheffler and Ragan became friends seven years ago, when they first played together and were paired together several times in tournaments.
Ragan shared Scheffler's joy when he won the U.S. Junior Amateur title and wanted to be in Irving to watch Scheffler in the HP Byron Nelson Championship, but he died three months ago of bone cancer.
“It just gave me a lot of perspective on everything,” Scheffler said. “I know if he were here right now, he'd be having a blast up here. He was just an awesome individual and taught me a lot.”
“He's always been such a wonderful friend of James',” Mecklin Ragan said. “Their entire family is remarkable. It was so kind of them to include us in their weekend.”
Scheffler recently had a fund raiser to help Triumph Over Kid Cancer, money that will help fund research for pediatric bone cancer.
And while he's not alive anymore, Scheffler said he learned a lot about life from his friend James.
“Just enjoy every moment,” Scheffler said. “That's what he really embraced and try to enjoy everything - enjoy every conversation and stuff like that - and really just be grateful. Just be grateful for what we all have.”
It’s a lesson that Scheffler will carry with him for the rest of his life.