Mountain Dew

February 10, 2012 by staff 

Mountain Dew, A Mountain Dew bottle. A neon green-colored plastic bottled filled with 20 ounces of soda. It’s sold in countless convenience stores across the nation, including the Cenex Station here in town.

This is what saved Payton Rufsvold’s life.  “I just got some sour Gummi Worms and some pop in case I got thirsty,” Rufsvold said. “I didn’t open it. No reason I didn’t open it.”

Rufsvold and his friend Alex Lee were invited to the house near Grandin, N.D., with the idea there’d be other people.

Yet when they arrived, they found a lone pickup and a friend who had been drinking for a few hours.

The friend waved a gun around and said it wasn’t loaded. He took the shotgun, fired it at Rufsvold and shot him in the stomach.

Rufsvold was holding his Mountain Dew near his stomach and it was the first thing the bullet hit.

“I just remember hearing the bottle pop,” said Lee, who was just a few feet away. “It just sounded like a loud explosion.”

All of this occurred Sept. 3, 2010.

All of this is what made Monday so special, when Rufsvold, a senior on the Norman County West basketball team, scored his 1,000th career point.

“I coached in Waubun before coming here, and there I had two kids who each passed the school scoring record,” said Norman County West coach Ron Ohren. “But what Payton did, that was more special.”

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