Family and friends say goodbye to Israel Sanchez

In a poem Israel Sanchez wrote in the second grade, he described himself as a running, playing smart, silly flipping, super kid, skipping, super reader (and) jumping. He also illustrated himself as an angel.

Dozens gathered Sunday in Mission to pay their respects and look back at the incredible 15-year-old's story.

He lost his battle with Cystic Fibrosis in early January.

Cheryl Viera, Israel TMs second-grade teacher was one of the many in attendance at his viewing.

She said even as a young boy Israel never put boundaries on himself. He never expected special treatment, Viera said. He was just your typical energetic fun, loving, always had a smile on his face (type of boy)."

Israel was in fact all smiles on a special day back in December when the Sharyland High School football team and cheerleaders paid him a special visit.

Israel was one of the rattlers biggest fans.

Anique Cura, a Sharyland High School cheerleader, said she learned to be grateful in life like Israel was.

The way he went up to everybody and his smile, Cura remembered about the visit. He started crying - he was very appreciative of everything we had done for him and it wasn TMt much - he was grateful for something so little."

Laura Rodriguez, another of Israel TMs teachers, was also at the viewing and said Israel always had a special place in her heart.

She remembers him by a special quote.

"And at the end, it's not the years in your life that count, but it's the life in your years, Rodriguez said.

No matter if it was days or years, those who to meet and get to know Israel said even though he's passed, he's left them with a very important life lesson.

Love and laugh despite what we might be facing, in the good times and in the bad, Viera said. And that's something that Israel has done - his life will still affect us even though he's gone."