For the latest Hawkeye Headquarters Wave of the Week, we introduce you to Jeg Weets.
He’s a 6-year-old boy from Morrison, Illinois, who was the kid captain in the season finale against Illinois.
“When you’re diagnosed with these diseases, you’re told to go make memories,” said Jenna Weets, Jeg’s mother. “He’s been practicing his little stance. He’s got a stance, like Herky.”
Perspective at any age is a powerful thing. Jeg got a whole different one at Kinnick Stadium.
“He wanted to know, ‘what’s it gonna be like? Is it that field I see from the hospital?’,” said Brad Weets, Jeg’s father.
It was a wide-eyed experience for Jeg, although he’s usually the one providing the perspective to his parents.
“He’s opened up everyone’s eyes to what’s really important in life,” Brad said. “When you do have a bad day like everybody does, to see him go through this and still be as happy as he is, it really helps you get through everything.”
Weets was originally diagnosed with Crohn’s disease four years ago. After further tests at the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital, Jeg was diagnosed with Niemann-Pick type C.
“They knew something was wrong. They weren’t sure why and kept digging,” Jenna said. “For that, we’re super grateful. Otherwise his NPC probably wouldn’t have been found until he had some major symptoms.”
NPC is a rare genetic disorder with no cure. Jeg now gets an experimental treatment twice-a-month.
“He’s tough and he gets up and just does it,” Jenna said. “We try to put on our brave face and follow his lead.”
And Jeg was there again on Saturday, leading his family during an unforgettable experience.
“Enjoying the day and the moment. I’m gonna remember his smile, and his excitement for the rest of our lives,” Jenna said.
A short reprieve from reality.
“He has the ability to do all this and go home and be a normal kid. He just really makes me look at the world a lot different,” Brad said.
A lesson on perspective and the precious moments in life.
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