HARWICH – Jesse Nash might have been a beloved Chatham resident, but he was a cherished member of the Monomoy community, which is why the MIAA student ambassadors at Monomoy Regional High School are holding a special day in his honor.
On April 7 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. children of all ages and their families are invited to come by Monomoy Regional High School for a Touch-a-Truck event and special 3 vs. 3 soccer tournament courtesy of Harwich Police Department Soccer League.
“The Nash family has long been involved in the HPD Soccer family and they are cherished members of our family,” said Harwich Detective Sergeant Bobby Brackett, coordinator of HPD Soccer. “Obviously we were deeply saddened by what they went through with Jesse. We were approached by the student ambassadors at MRHS and jumped at the opportunity to do whatever we could to help.”
Jesse Nash passed away last year at the age of 7 after a four-year battle with neuroblastoma, a rare form of childhood cancer. He was best known for his sunny disposition and cheerful outlook, as well as his love of all things pertaining to firefighting. In December 2017, Nash was named an honorary chief of the Chatham Fire Department.
“He was just a sweet boy and had such a very infectious personality,” said Brackett. “He very much loved the Chatham Fire Department and fire trucks. Anytime young children take such a strong interest in public safety we appreciate it.”
MIAA student ambassadors Maggie Dever, Sarah Babb, and Jason Masiello said the idea first came to them at a leadership conference.
“We were at the leadership conference and we all brainstormed it together,” said Babb, a multi-sport student athlete currently on the girls varsity lacrosse team with Dever. She said the trio was inspired by stories from other ambassadors regarding their own successful events.
“We went into a huddle and they give you a plan to set up your own community service event, and we heard other people's stories and decided we should do it for Jesse,” Dever said.
“I feel like he had the biggest impact on the community,” said Babb. “He tied us all together.”
The three took their idea to the local police department, which was happy to help support the event.
“We assisted them in organizing the public safety vehicles for Touch-a-Truck and we will be putting on a 3v3 soccer tournament at MRHS with teams made up of our HPD Soccer group,” said Brackett.
“The Touch-a-Truck was just a fun idea and definitely a way to get the community involved,” said Masiello. “And the mattress sale is happening, so it's just going to be a good community event.”
Dever, Babb, and Masiello said that the event, which is free, will feature the Touch-a-Truck and the soccer tourney, and the concession stand will be open, offering a variety of snacks.
Donations will benefit The Jesse Nash Foundation established in 2018 by Jesse's parents, Caroline and Peter Nash, to help local elementary school students pursue interests in science and technology through scholarships and other financial assistance, as well as to fund neuroblastoma research in the hopes of one day finding a cure.
“It's going to be a lot of fun,” said Masiello.
“Jesse just had a good spirit,” said Dever. “He was always smiling and was just a good kid. He should be remembered.”