All Starz dominate in Las Vegas, hope to continue in Flagstaff

Miner Photo/MITCHELL BATSON

Frederick Herzer said he remembered feeling dizzy as he lay down at a local motel.

When he was awakened 21 hours later, his girlfriend had died from the carbon monoxide poisoning.

Herzer was transported to Kingman Regional Medical Center and then on to St.

John's Barrow Neurological Center in Phoenix, where he spent five days.

Herzer said he hears constant ringing in his ears and can't feel half of his right hand because of nerve damage.

His left foot was extremely swollen and has since turned purple.

He said he has been told that his foot and hand should return to normal and that the ringing in his ears should stop eventually.

Herzer is undergoing physical therapy at Del E.

Webb Fitness Center, which he said will continue six weeks.

Herzer remembers "getting real dizzy," his head spinning as he lay on a couch the evening of Feb.

14.

He fell asleep and didn't wake up until he was in the hospital.

When he awoke, his hands were tied down and breathing tubes had been inserted into his mouth and throat.

"I was freaking out," said the 23-year-old maker of custom cargo trailers.

Herzer said he is planning on returning to work in a few weeks but only light duty.

His mother, Cheryl Fry, doesn't place blame for the incident, which she calls "an accident - I don't want anyone to feel guilty," she said.

However, Fry added, wants to use the situation for the betterment of others.

She has spoken to area legislators about sponsoring a bill to require hotels and motels to install carbon monoxide detectors in rooms.

Every joint aches in her son's body, she said, and he frequently has sharp pain.

Fry said she is thankful for the support she and the family of her son's girlfriend have received from crisis intervention volunteers with the Mohave County victim/witness program.

Fry said she called the motel every 15 minutes from 4 p.m.

to 6:30 p.m.

Feb.

15 to check on her son.

A motel employee went to the room between 6:30 and 6:45 p.m., she said.

Herzer was late to pick up his 3-year old daughter at Fry's home.

Herzer and his daughter live with her, Fry said.

"He laid there for 21 hours," said Fry of her son.

"This is not like my son to not show up for his daughter."

Blood tests of Herzer conducted at the hospital after the incident detected carbon monoxide poisoning, Kingman fire Capt.

Bill Johnston said.

Fire department personnel took carbon monoxide readings in the motel room where Herzer and Johnson had stayed.

A few adjacent motel rooms were shut down as a safety precaution, Johnston said.

There are 6,000-plus victims of carbon monoxide poisoning each year in the United States.

Johnston said carbon monoxide poisonings in the Kingman area have been "very uncommon" during the past few years, although the fire department has responded to a few carbon monoxide alarms.

"In the past, we used to have quite a few (carbon monoxide poisonings), but not lately (until the Johnson/Herzer incident) because of the installation of carbon monoxide alarms," Johnston said.

Most carbon monoxide poisonings involve those who fall asleep in cars with the engines running or in a closed-in garage where an engine is running.

Other instances include lack of ventilation in rooms or buildings that have wood-burning or natural gas/propane stoves.

Some effects of carbon monoxide poisoning include: fatigue, difficulty breathing, chest pain, heart palpitations, lethargy, confusion, depression, hallucinations, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headaches, dizziness, seizures and incontinence.The All Starz gymnastics level 4-team has earned a shot at perfection.

With a win at the Flagstaff Invitational on March 5-7, the gymnasts will have won every invitational in which they've competed for the last two years.

The team's most recent victory came over the weekend at the Cactus Cooler in Las Vegas.

At the meet hosted by the Desert Gymcats of Las Vegas, the All Starz competed against teams from across the country.

"There were two teams from New York, teams from Virginia, New Jersey, Hawaii and several others," Coach Brandee Proffit said.

"It was a lot more fun.

The judges and other teams had no ideas about us.

"

The All Starz level 4 team won with a score of 112.35, more than a full point ahead of second place.

"They were consistent in all events," Proffit said.

Mallory Moore led the way for the level 4-team.

She had a level 4 high-score of 37.125 and finished first or second in three of the four events.

Ten of the competing All Starz gymnasts finished with scores higher than 36.000 points, a remarkable achievement Proffit added.

The level 4 teams were broken down into five groups based on age.

In each of the five groups, the All Starz had at least one person finish in the top-3 spots.

The All Starz level 7 team did not receive a team score because there are only two girls competing at that level.

12-year old Lauren Bledsoe finished third in her group with a score of 37.450 and 14-year old Heather Yarbrough placed fourth in her group, scoring 36.350.

"They had the highest scores ever at that level from anyone from here," Proffit said.

The level 6 team placed third with a score of 107.45.

Jessica Painter led the group with a score of 36.575 and won both the beam and bar events.

"The level 6 kids looked really good.

Mariah (Moon) and Tricia (Hall) just moved up and they did really well," Proffit said.

Moon finished second in her group, while Hall placed fourth with a score of 34.900 and won the vault competition.

The level 5 team struggled and did not place at the Invitational, but two girls earned top two finishes.

Sarah Tepfer won the all-around for her group with a score of 36.425.

Ashley House placed second in her group scoring 34.525.

The All Starz teams will be competing at the Flagstaff Invitational so they can qualify for the state tournament in Phoenix at the end of the month.

A recent rule change dropping the required number of in-state meets from three to two for the level 7 team has allowed the All Starz the opportunity to travel to Las Vegas and San Diego.

As the success of the All Starz gymnasts continues, so does their growth.

The team is moving from their current 5600 sq.

ft.

facility to a 13,000 sq.

ft.

facility.

Proffit said the goal is to be completely moved by April 15 in preparation for the Invitational they will host on May 1.

"We're going to be able to have more classes, more hours, more quality coaching time, new equipment.

It's going to be great," she said.