|Posted by Ally Tucker on November 3, 2011 at 5:10 PM|
November 3rd. Does that date mean anything to you? Besides being today's date? Probably not. And for me and some of my best friends, November 3rd used to mean nothing at all either. These days though, I can expect a text message or 2 every year on November 3rd saying...."NOVEMTHREE!!!"
You might find yourself sitting there right now saying "WHO/WHAT is Novemthree?" First of all, let me stop you right there--stop pronouncing it No-Vem-THREE. It's pronounced No-Vem-TREE. Common mistake. Now, let me explain to you just exactly who Novemthree really is....
Members of the Transy women's soccer team met Novemthree one night many years ago while we were spending the night in a random hotel for an away game on Friday nights like we always did for a Saturday match. We were in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC), aka our away games were in the middle of nowhere in the most bizarre towns in all of the midwest. We would always arrive to the hotels late at night, with our stomachs full of Burger King (why, oh why Coach Fulton/Parviz did you always take us there for pre-game meals? It's a miracle we ever won a game). We would have to be in bed shortly after our arrival, so there really wasn't much else to do on these trips in the hotels other than watch mediocre Friday night television.
Our programming of choice that night? "FACE EATING TUMORS!" God bless the Discovery Channel and all of it's ridiculously named shows.
That's when we met little Novemthree, the most precious little 3-year old boy in the world. His spirit could not be hampered by the fact that he had 3 large, continuously growing tumors on his face. The tumors grew so large in fact that Novemthree was unable to see at all out of 1 of his eyes and the other eye was nearly blinded as well. His lips were so swollen that he had to be fed through a straw. He also had trouble speaking clearly because of the swelling of his mouth and lips.
Do not be fooled by his dramatic appearance though. After 5 minutes of watching the show, none of us cared one bit that he had 3 face eating tumors. He was the happiest, most precious little boy of all time. He was being put through surgery after surgery to try to remove the tumors and re-construct his face. No matter how many weeks he spent in the hospitals, he kept laughing and being playful and adorable. At one point in the hour long show, he was in a hospital bed talking on the phone to someone and just jibber-jabbering away while bobbing his head back and forth happily. We all literally were wiping tears from our eyes because he was just so darn cute.
It's hard to explain just how much little Novemthree's spirit warmed all of our hearts. I wish everyone could watch the show because there's just something about the little guy that makes you root for him and fall in love with him.
The last 5 minutes of the show were so uplifting because Novemthree had what the doctor's were calling "majorly successful surgeries." He was on the up and up. His face was starting to look better and better and he was not holed up in a hospital anymore. The cutest minute in all of television happened in the last minute when they showed Novemthree asking his friends if he could play soccer with them. He was running around with the biggest smile on his face. He was able to be a kid again, just like everyone else.
The final images of the show were of Novemthree playing and laughing. We all turned our attention from the screen for a moment and clapped and were smiling and laughing about how cute he was and how great it was that he was able to have a somewhat normal life from here on out.
With no warning at all.....
Out of nowhere.......
After the show was completely over....
The Discovery Channel decides to randomly throw in as a footnote that almost a year after the filming, Novemthree passed away.
The Discovery Channel TOOOOTALLY dropped a bomb on all of us. We all just sat there, staring at the screen in shock and then we all, strangely simultaneously cried out, "NOVEMTHREE...NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!"
It was one of the most devastating moments of our lives. To this day I will never forget how caught off guard his passing took us.
As a tribute to Novemthree, we decided that on November 3rd every year (NovemThree...get it?) we would dress up in all black to mourn his death.
It just so happened that while at Transy, November 3rd always fell in the middle of soccer season....so we had to wear our all black gear to practice. (One of my teammates, Haley Hart, even typed out a small speech about Novemthree the night before our conference championship game my senior year. "Let's do it for Novemthree!" I kid you not).
Parviz was always so confused. "Why everyone wear black today?! Don't do this again."
We won't Parv, until November 3rd of the next year.
Today is November 3rd and we still remember and mourn Novemthree's death.
(This video is footage mainly from a 2nd installment of Discovery Channel's coverage of Novemthree. It's not exactly what we watched but it should give you an idea of just how special this little guy was).