LAKEWOOD, Colo. (KDVR) — A local high school football star is asking for the public’s help after he suffered from a major heart attack back in November.
Markus Martinez, former Columbine High School football star and now senior at Bear Creek High School, has been in and out of the hospital since November.
Doctors said he is in need of a new heart.
“It’s been a little tough on him that he can’t get up, get out of bed and do his normal activities and stuff that he used to do, but he’s hanging in there,” Markus’ father Steven Martinez said.
Shelly Segura, Markus’ mother, said his heart is only functioning at 12% to 15%, which means he needs a new heart as soon as possible.
“His heart is just unfortunately too sick right now,” Segura said. “We’ve all come together and have been praying for him. We’re really trying to stay positive for Markus.”
The family said the heart attack came as a shock to everyone.
“I just couldn’t believe it was happening to someone so young and athletic,” Steven said.
The teen’s older brother, Steven Martinez, said it’s been tough watching his brother miss out on his senior year.
“It’s been hard for him just watching everyone go through all the senior stuff that a normal kid gets to go through and he doesn’t get to enjoy that,” Markus’ brother said.
Markus has been accepted for a heart transplant at UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora. A GoFundMe has been set up to help with the medical expenses.
“We’re hopeful he can get a heart anytime now,” Segura said. “Despite everything he’s staying positive. Of course, it’s scary. He’s scared, but he still has a positive attitude.”
The family said they’re grateful for the outpouring of support from the community.
“Markus definitely has a lot of love and support and we’re very grateful for that,” Segura said. “I think that’s what’s keeping him going.”