I just received an email from a close friend, Chris Loftus, about a Walkathon that is taking place for his nephew, Matthew, on June 18th in Springfield Illinois. I had the opportunity to play alongside Chris at New England Revolution, and having read Matthew’s brave story, I believe it is worth sharing in case any SoccerCleats101 readers can help (his story included below.) If you live in the area, or want to contribute a donation via PayPal (which I am doing) it is a very worthy cause, and for those of us that are blessed with good health and the ability to play soccer daily, it is a simple way to give back. I think you will agree that little Matthew’s story really puts everything into perspective.
Check out the WalkForMatthew website for more info or if you want to donate.
Matthew Ryan Boyer (son of Heather Loftus Boyer and Cory Boyer) was born three months early via emergency C-section, weighing in at 2 pounds, 7 ounces. After contracting staph pneumonia twice within the first six weeks of life, he developed a very rare lung disease, called brochopulmonary dysphasia. Due to this rare disease, he was admitted to NICU at Children’s Memorial Hospital in Chicago, Illinois for the first thirteen months of his life, where he underwent several invasive surgeries, requiring him to be ventilated often.
He was eventually sent home where he remains on oxygen twenty fours hour a day and is fed through a G-tube inserted into his stomach. At twenty three months of age now, Matthew is still on oxygen and still fed through a G-tube, both of which he will likely require for years to come. He also currently receives eight sessions of therapy per week, including Physical, Occupational, Speech and Developmental therapy. In addition to his extensive course of weekly therapy, he also requires constant monitoring by his team of specialists, including his pulmonologist, cardiologist, optometrist, ENT, Kidney and pediatrician.
Matthew’s medical costs have nearly exceeded $5,000,000.00.
Despite all of the above, he is a happy, loving, beautiful little boy who has changed our families perspective on life and its precious gifts.
SAVE THE DATE: JUNE 18th – 8 AM TO NOON
WHERE: SOUTHWIND PARK – SPRINGFIELD, ILLINOIS