Sep 28, 2013
05:39 AM
Connecticut Today

The Life, and Death, of 6-Year-Old North Haven Boy Leaves Inspiring Legacy

The Life, and Death, of 6-Year-Old North Haven Boy Leaves Inspiring Legacy

John Vanacore

Matthew Jacques.

 

NORTH HAVEN--Matthew Jacques, like most 6-year-old boys, dreamed of one day playing football. A congenital heart defect made it impossible.

So the football team at North Haven High allowed him to carry out a fantasy during its annual June scrimmage, staging a touchdown run and celebration capable of brightening the darkest of souls.

Matthew, in his youthful innocence, managed to convey a simple yet valuable life lesson to those teenage boys: it’s far more rewarding to give than to receive, especially when it comes to assisting your fellow man.

“I’ve never seen a look in the eyes of our team like I did the day after that game,” North Haven coach Anthony Sagnella said. “They knew they did something special, they knew they touched the family in a very unique way. The look on their faces the next day in school, it was a different look. Even after beating Xavier (last Friday) I didn’t see that look.”

Matthew, youngest son of Alphonse and Melissa Jacques, died Thursday after complications from a late August heart transplant. He’d endured multiple open heart surgeries since birth. The condition remained serious, though it never sapped his boundless energy. He waited over 200 days for a new heart, rushing to New York when a donor was found.

His ordeal and infectious resolve served as inspiration to those well beyond North Haven’s borders.

See the full story at New Haven Register online.

 

The Life, and Death, of 6-Year-Old North Haven Boy Leaves Inspiring Legacy

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