We’ve been radio silent over here lately…busy living life and enjoying the holidays. I’m interrupting this silence to pay a special tribute to a personal hero of mine…the MVP #12. Beautiful Mathias.

There are many perfectly written posts, Facebook messages and tributes being made to this remarkable young man, who left this world tragically too soon this past Sunday. There are hundreds of great things to say about him and every one of them is true. This 13 year old changed me…changed how I wanted to live. Made me want to be a better person and citizen of this brutifal life. He was special ya’ll. He was put on this earth for greatness.

But what I want to talk about…what I will remember…and what I will call upon when I need strength I cannot find in my own self…is his smile. Innocent, slightly mischievous and would light up a room brighter than the tallest Christmas tree.

But because of childhood cancer, that smile will only remain in our hearts and in our memories now. The world will miss out on that smile when he would’ve celebrated making the varsity soccer team…as a freshman. When he graduated high school and got accepted to his first choice college. When he & his brother celebrated his bachelor party. When his bride appeared at the end of the aisle. When his children were born. The loss cuts like a knife and hurts at the very deepest part.

I’ve read so many comments on the family’s page that talk about how tragic it is that Mathias never grew to become the man we all knew would change the world. But in 13 short years…he did just that. He changed our world and he made it a better place for everyone who knew him. See…his life of purpose wasn’t just about him. It was about my life. Kate’s life. The life of the kids he knew, loved and lost. The community of children with pediatric cancer. His dream was to make a difference and to make people AWARE and to bring better funding for research and new treatments so that kids like his friends, and for kids like HIM to go on to live richly-deserved, full lives.

I’m asking you, as a follower of Kate’s Krew, to honor our hero Mathias in any way you see fit this season. Celebrate his remarkable life with a random act of kindness. Maybe post this to your Facebook page to bring awareness to pediatric cancer…it is NOT rare and our babies are DYING from it at a completely unacceptable rate.

Visit The Truth 365 for more information on how YOU can make a difference. Register to have a Childhood Cancer Awareness license plate if you live in the state of Virginia. Or, make a donation in his name to a childhood cancer organization. Most importantly, offer your prayers for Mathias’ family and all of those who loved him.

Mathias, there will never be another like you. Thank you for being exactly you. EXACTLY. YOU.

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