NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KTRE) - Heston Kelly never got to meet his father’s friend Cally Belcher but he knows all about him and the impact he had on his family’s life.
Belcher played with Heston’s father Chad at SFA. They both came to Nacogdoches together in 1990. In the spring of 1994, Belcher died a few days after suffering a head injury during spring football practice for the Lumberjacks.
Through the years, Kelly and some other college teammates have carried on Belcher’s legacy through The 16 Club. The group raises money through various events for head trauma research and for a memorial scholarship.
Heston is a wide receiver for the Magnolia Bulldogs. He wears No.16 - the same number Belcher wore.
“I learned about him by going to all the Cally foundations and 16 club and all that,” Heston said. "I know he is a special person in our family and all my dad’s friends so I have always wanted to wear 16. I told the coaches to make sure they saved it for me before the year started. I have had teammates and people ask why I wear it. I told the and explained it. "
This past Friday he showed off his skills against Lufkin including an 82-yard punt return for a touchdown as the Bulldog handed Lufkin a second district loss.
“It sounds nuts but there are little reminders that happen during a game that it is almost like he is saying, ‘I am still with yall.’”