A student. A poet. An athlete. A dreamer. A doer. A seeker. A fighter.
And a fine Hillman.
Joliet Catholic Academy junior Matt Mammosser, 18, was all of those things and more. He passed away the morning of May 27 at the Joliet Area Community Hospice Home after waging a courageous five-month battle with an aggressive form of brain cancer.
A starting defensive tackle for JCA’s Class 5A state runnersup in football, Mammosser was diagnosed with primary nervous system metastatic melanoma on Jan. 3. His family never left his side after he was hospitalized April 17.
Visitation for Mammosser will be from 3 to 8 p.m. Thursday in JCA’s Student Activity Center and from 9 until the 10:30 a.m. Friday funeral services at JCA. a burial mass will be held at 11:30 a.m. at the Cathedral of St. Raymond in Joliet.
Born in Joliet at Provena St. Joseph Medical Center on Jan. 13, 1994, Mammosser considered JCA to be his second home and a second family. According to his family, he was living out his dream by wearing No. 91 for the Hilltoppers’ football team.
Due to Mammosser’s hearing impairment, the football team developed a language of its own to communicate with him. He came to JCA from St. Mary Nativity and proudly transformed into a member of the renowned Rudy’s Gym power-lifting team.
While hoping to win a state championship for JCA in football, Mammosser’s other goals were to play college football and to be a firefighter or a paramedic.
Preceded in death by his paternal grandparents John A. and Marian “Kate” Mammosser, Matt is survived by his parents Jim and Susan (Hintz) Mammosser of Joliet; his brother Nick (’05) and his sister Rachel (’10); his niece Kylee; maternal grandparents Ernie and Janet Hintz (Garavalia, ’57) of Joliet; girlfriend Sarah Gottardo; and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.
The phrase “today a Hilltopper became an Angel” will be one of Mammosser’s lasting legacies, along with his standing up for those in need, giving extra meaning to the term “Mammo Strong.”
This article was written by Bill Scheibe, director of communications for Joliet Catholic Academy.