Last month, “06880” shined a spotlight on Mat Jacowleff. The 2015 Staples High School graduate — now a Northeastern University junior — has encouraged dozens of his Delta Tau Delta fraternity brothers to donate hundreds of pints of blood to Boston Children’s Hospital.
But that’s hardly the end of the story.
Evan Sheiber is a young boy born with only 1 pumping chamber in his heart. Like Mat, he too is a Westporter.
Evan had a blood transfusion during open heart surgery a year ago. He’ll need another in his next operation. When Evan’s mom Britt saw the “06880” story, she posted a thank-you on Mat’s Facebook page. (Like Mat too, Evan was featured on “06880,” last spring.)
Evan is also the star of an inspiring video, produced this past summer by Boston Children’s Hospital.
The video inspired Mat and his fellow blood donors to write cards to Evan.
Last week, Mat delivered them.
There were over 100. All, Britt says, were “incredibly thoughtful and sweet.”
One young man wrote: “Hey Evan. I’m a student at Northeastern. Just wanted to say I’m rooting for you buddy. Thank you for showing me what courage is. Much love buddy. Chris Li. ”
Another said, “Dear Evan, You are an inspiration to all the brothers at Northeastern in Delta Tau Delta. Keep Fighting. “
A third read, “Surf’s Up. Ride the wave to greatness.”
And this: “ While we’ve never met in person, you’ve left a lasting impact on me. You inspire me to give back and help every day.”
Britt read each one to her son. He’s only 1 1/2 — not yet old enough to fully understand the words — but he loved the colorful drawings.
Britt put them in Evan’s safe-keeping box. She’ll read them to him again, when he is 3 or 4 — before his next open heart surgery.
“I know they will encourage him to be brave, and to fight. Some will make him laugh,” she says.
“I am deeply touched by these college students. This is such a selfless act. These college students took time away from their crazy schedules to write thoughtful notes to my heart warrior, my son Evan.”
Britt and her husband Brett (!) have 3 boys (including Evan’s twin James), and 1 daughter.
She will be “incredibly proud” if her 4 children grow up to be the kind of fine young adults who give back to their communities.
You know — just like those inspired by her and Evan’s fellow Westporter, Mat Jacowleff.