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The one hundred honoree: Swirls Around the World

Donor Story

The one hundred honoree: Swirls Around the World

Mass General Giving

Swirls Around the World, honoring the life of Matthew Cirelli, embraces his spirit and courage as it helps those who are fighting cancer.

Swirls Around the World was created in honor of Matthew Cirelli, who was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma at age 17. Swirls was Matt’s nickname, given to him by his childhood friends because of his curly red hair. Unfortunately, he lost his battle in 2013 at the age of 19. Along with being an incredible son, brother, friend, cousin, nephew and student, he was also a hero. And Matt’s close-knit family has made it their mission to carry on his legacy so that they may help others.

Swirls Around the World was spearheaded by Matt’s cousin, Jennifer Caruso, to continue his story. It distributes Swirls Strong bracelets, which were made by Matt before his passing. People are encouraged to take the bracelets with them everywhere, as if Matt is along for the journey. In addition, because he would buy a shot glass from wherever he traveled, Swirls Strong shot glasses are sold in his honor, with the proceeds establishing money for a scholarship fund. Several fundraising events are also being planned to raise money for Ewing’s Sarcoma and Mass General. Jennifer also created a Swirls Around the World website where people can learn more about Ewing’s Sarcoma, read about current research, and seek out support services.

Matt greatly valued spending time with his family and was a leader in starting family traditions. That legacy continues with Swirls Around the World, which is a true family effort dedicated to Matt’s life. From his immediate family and beyond, their never-ending love for Matt is present in every way that they carry out his wishes to help other cancer warriors.