My life changed forever on August 11, 2010. A typical hot, muggy August day, my beloved son Jovante returned home after his varsity football practice and had an asthma attack. Because his inhaler was low on medication, Jovante sent his younger brother Aubrhee to our neighbor’s home to borrow his friend’s inhaler. When Aubrhee returned, he found Jovante unconscious.
An ambulance rushed Jovante to the hospital where it was confirmed that his asthma attack had caused him to suffer anoxic brain injury. Having seen Jovante in good spirits just an hour before his asthma attack, his distraught father was not prepared to be greeted by the chaplain when arrived at the hospital. Together, we spent the next four days waiting and praying for our son's recovery, which was not to be.
There is no deeper pain than losing your child. Not being able to see Jovante realize his dreams is beyond heart breaking. Jovante admired NFL great Jerome Bettis whom never let asthma stand in his way on or off the field. Our son only wanted to do the same. Never did we think asthma would steal our son's life.
Our happiest memories of Jovante live on through the foundation we started in his name. No family should ever have to grieve the loss of a child. By fighting for air alongside the American Lung Association, we are working to ensure every child has healthy air to breathe. Air pollution triggers asthma attacks. By cleaning up power plant pollution, tailpipe emissions and other such sources of pollution, we can prevent thousands of asthma attacks every year while giving another child the chance to fulfill their dreams.
To learn more about Jovante's foundation and the 3.8 to be Great Scholarship Fund, please visit: jovantewoodsfoundation.org.