Evan Nicholas Girardi was our first child, born on October 4th 1989 in Mission Hills, California.
At his birth, doctors discovered a congenital heart defect called Correct L- Transposition of the Great Arteries. This defect is a rare congenital heart defect associated with multiple cardiac abnormalities usually requiring some sort of intervention within the first year of life. Due to the uncertainty of Evan’s condition and being away from our families, we decided to head back to the East Coast, settling in the town of Hopkinton, Massachusetts and beginning a life-long relationship with an amazing community and Boston Children’s Hospital.
From his birth, Evan was asymptomatic which both delighted and amazed his doctors. They felt that as long as Evan was “balanced” (all abnormalities working together causing an ok situation) we could continue with no medication and yearly checkups, with the hope of someday having a surgical repair. We considered each check-up a blessing and his life progress miraculous. As a result, Evan grew-up a typical kid, involved in many activities and able to participate in any sport he desired. He loved sports, especially anything to do with the Boston Red Sox, Celtics, and Patriots and Boston College Eagles. He was an avid Boston fan!
He also cherished his family: a proud brother of three younger sisters all of who he always looked after. He loved family gatherings and was extremely proud of his Catholic Italian heritage.
Over the years, his happy, caring and easy going personality formed many lasting and special relationships. Throughout his life, Evan’s personality shone through, never letting his heart situation define who he was or would be.
One February 12, 2007, of Evan’s senior year of high school, on the recommendations of his doctors, he underwent open heart surgery. Once again, he showed his strong and resilient personality, never complaining and always living with hope and a smile that wouldn’t be wiped away.
Over the next 3 years, Evan faced many struggles…never without smiling or determination to move forward. The surgery left him with a pacemaker, continued battles with heart failure and a need to take 5 medications. Nonetheless, determined to live his life and experience the world, Evan attended Loyola University Maryland in Baltimore, went to Rome, Italy for a semester abroad and most importantly continued to build special and lasting relationships with many.
On September 6th 2010, as Evan began his senior year at Loyola, he died suddenly in his dorm room of a heart arrhythmia. The outpouring of love and support from Evan’s friends, family and community has been remarkable. We are continually blessed by the fruit of his life and know that our role is to remember the miracle of his life and to continue to share it and him with others.
With all our love and gratitude…
The Girardi Family