MILTON, Mass. - The Curry College Athletic Department partnered again with Team IMPACT to welcome Shane Heffernan as an honorary member of the Curry Colonels Football Team. Heffernan, 13, from nearby Braintree, Mass. was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis (CF) in 2004. On Saturday, April 27, at the Walter M. Katz Field in Milton, the Curry Football coaches and players welcomed Shane as an honorary member of their team.
"Curry College Football is excited to have drafted Shane Heffernan from Team IMPACT this past April," said Colonels' Head Coach Skip Bandini. "In a short period of time Shane has developed great friendships with fellow teammates and the coaching staff."
View Shane's Special Day with the Curry College Colonels Football Team
Shane was thrilled to become the newest Colonel to join the roster. After years of battling incessant colds and traveling back and forth from doctor's appointments to find out what was causing them, 4-year-old Shane was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis (CF). CF is a disease which affects the lungs and digestive tract as well as other areas of the body. He was put on a host of medications and felt better but as time progressed, he picked up sicknesses that he was only minimally exposed such as stomach bugs, bronchitis, and colds that lasted months. Shane began steadily losing weight through 2008, so in attempt to keep his weight up and prolong his life span, he was put on supplements. In 2009, he started to use a feeding tube for nine hours a night to keep his weight stable. Since his diagnosis, Shane has been hospitalized upwards of 10 times and has had five different infections due to his feeding tube. Recently, Shane started vest treatments which clear the lungs and help him breathe with more ease.
"Shane is not only part of the team but he will be assisting the coaches with calling plays in crucial situations," said Bandini. "Shane's attitude is one that I have not seen before; always upbeat, energetic and willing to be the ultimate team player. This behavior will become a positive influence on our players and coaches."
Shane is pumped to be a part of the Curry College football team. According to Shane, he likes to eat pizza and loves ice cream shakes of any flavor. His favorite movie is "Ace Ventura: Pet Detective" and he spends his time hanging out with friends and playing xBox, especially Halo, Assassin's Creed, and Call of Duty. Shane, his 8-year-old sister Abby, and his 7-year-old brother Matthew were all on hand to meet the team.
The Curry football team had a great 2012 season and they are looking forward to their 2013 season where they'll have Shane to provide them with some extra motivation. Said Bandini: "Since Shane has joined the team the hopes of something special happening in 2013 is more prevalent now than ever before."
The guys list AC-DC, Jay-Z and Kanye West as a few of their favorite musical artists and they look up to athletes Tom Brady, David Ortiz and Lebron James, among many others. Their favorite movies are "Friday Night Lights", "Elf", and "Remember the Titans" and some of their favorite foods are chicken parm and lasagna.