His face lights up at the mere mention of meeting his favourite hockey player, Sidney Crosby.
Grinning ear to ear, he raises his hand and flashes a couple of fingers as he counts down the days to his upcoming encounter with Crosby and the Penguins in Pittsburgh.
While Matechuk still doesn’t talk a lot, and says his words slowly, he’s speaking more and more as time goes on.
And so is this chance to meet Sid the Kid in person on Tuesday in Pittsburgh, where the Penguins will play the Stanley Cup champion Washington Capitals.
“It’s very exciting,” says Matechuk, a native of Colonsay whose parents, Shelley and Kevin, have been living in Saskatoon during Layne’s recovery process.
While Crosby is a hockey hero for many young players, most aren’t like Matechuk, who survived the horrific bus crash on April 6, 2018.
It’s an article that might just make you re-prioritize things hearing how a young man has thrived after being in a coma and a traumatic brain injury. He’s dealing with speech therapy, physiotherapy to relearn balance and how to walk (and getting back on skates!). He’s got 11 plates in his face, dealt with broken ribs, cuts and abrasions so bad Matechuk recently had minor surgery to remove broken glass from the accident that was still in his body for so long.
And while it’s a great gesture by the Penguins and Crosby to meet this young man and give him a great experience, it’s also one that should be nice, as the family recently mention in court just how trying the experience of the last 11 months has been.
Layne Matechuk’s father says his son can’t comprehend the traumatic brain injury he’s suffered. Mom lost her job because she needed to look after Layne, and dad’s work has also suffered for similar reasons.— Courtney Theriault (@cspotweet) January 28, 2019
For someone dealing with so much, getting the opportunity to meet his favorite player in Crosby will surely be a great experience, and it’s definitely a person and family that deserves a great day. I’m hopeful and probably sure this visit will get some more media attention and recognition so everyone will be able to share in a great day for hockey!