PEARLAND, Texas - Friends and family members are remembering a Pearland teenager who went to the nurse's office with a stomach ache Tuesday and then died two hours later.
Now his mother is on a mission to find out what happened to him, so it doesn't happen to anyone else.
There's still laughter in Josh Gray's room, his favorite records play, his shoes ready by the door. But in every pause, his friends remember, he's not coming home.
"I got a phone call that Josh was gone," said Josh's friend Austin Hurst.
It happened so quickly.
"He went from going to school yesterday morning, normal day, happy, to having a stomach ache, to within two hours not being with us anymore," said Josh's mother Laurie Gray.
Doctors say the artery leading to Josh's pancreas ruptured, then his pancreas ruptured too. Doctors couldn't stop the bleeding and they couldn't see it coming.
Friends started a GoFundMe page and Josh's mom plans to use it for a research fund, to find and cure rare underlying diseases, carrying on in Josh's name, and through those he loved.
"I will never lose touch with all of his friends and I'll always see him through them," said Mrs. Gray.
It's an honor and a challenge to the friends who are just grateful to be in Josh's space.
"I don't think there will ever be someone like Josh," said friend Seth Blunt.
"Josh loved everyone for who they were," added Hurst. "I'm loud and obnoxious, he loved that about me. I mean, he loved all of us for exactly who we were. And that was the best part about being with Josh. You could be you."
It's a rare gift for a 17-year-old. One who loved to play golf at Dawson High School and to travel, he planned a mission trip for this summer. Now with all his plans left hanging, his friends prepare to fill empty shoes, and make every step count.
"We love Josh," said Blunt. "We all love Josh. He's connected to us."
To donate to Josh's family click here.