Jesse Story Jr.
Jesse Story Jr., age 8, of Hamden entered into rest on September 6, 2018. He was the cherished son of Michelle Perona and Jesse Story Sr. Jesse leaves a large and loving family; including his sister Seleste Michaud, grandparents Patricia and Robert Story, aunt Angela Story, uncle Paul (Jodi) Story, cousin Isabella Longyear. His maternal family includes Jesse’s aunts Aunts: Taressa (Paul) Carangelo, Natalie (Nick) Watert and Uncles: Mark (Kristen) Simone and Greg Smith. He also leaves loving cousins PJ, Joey, Jack, Max, Luke, Zachary, Hunter, Madison, Sawyer and Bryson.
He was predeceased by his paternal great grandparents Pasquale and Anna Liscio, Arthur and Elizabeth Story and maternal grandmother Patricia Perona Smith.
Life Story for Jesse Story Jr.
Jesse was born April 17, 2010. At three months old, Mom and Grandma rushed Jesse to Yale, when they noticed he was having trouble breathing. After three days, they told us he needed a heart transplant. We chose Presbyterian Hospital in New York. They put him in an ambulance with Grandma and rushed him to New York. Jesse waited for three months for a transplant. We all stayed in New York as much as possible, taking turns coming and going. We let everything slide. Everything we did was to make Jesse happy and comfortable.
He was so young. When he would watch cartoons he enjoyed them, nut at three months old really had no way to relate to what was going on! Sometimes he found it more fun to watch all the blinking lights on all the monitors! After we got used to the routine at the hospital, we began to see other people coming in with sick children. You could look at their faces and see what we were also feeling; we could see ourselves.
It makes one realize more than ever, all people are the same no matter where they come from; their race, their religion, it makes no difference. We all want the best for our children. I noticed my son Jesse made a special effort to help the new patients to settle in and adjust to things.
At six months old, Jesse received his new heart, (thank and bless God for the family of the child that donated!). Within a month, he was home. Mom, Dad and Grandma nursed him back to health, and before you know it, he’s two and a half, and running around like any kid! When he went for his second heart biopsy, all went wrong and his heart stopped for 25 minutes, and he had a stroke. The doctors pretty much said not to expect Jesse to improve very much. When we brought him home, he could barely move but to open one eye and move his right hand.
One night I was coming home from the hospital, praying for a miracle, when God spoke to me and said if we wanted a miracle, it was up to us, his family, to help this miracle come along. For days, visions of how to help Jesse came into my head. So we worked every day to help Jesse to improve.
The doctor told me Jesse was blind; I said no, I think he can see me with the one eye that he could open. They insisted I was wrong! Turns out Jesse remembered the conversation and said he could see me all the time! That was 4-6 weeks after the stroke. So now we knew Jesse was aware of everything all the time. Jesse was very fragile for the first month or so, so he threw up every time he was fed. Jesse would sit on my lap and I would support his head. By now, Jesse was starting to move his eye. One day I said to Jesse, “I know you are afraid to move your head because you think it will drop because your neck is not strong enough. I said Jesse, I am going to put my hand under your chin, so your head won’t fall.” Jesse sits there thinking, looks to the left and to the right, then slowly and gently he lowered his head into my hand. Wow, now we know he understands everything we say!
Jesse continued to get stronger as the months and years passed. Jesse began going to school, St. Vincent 's in Trumbull, which I can't say enough about. Every person we ever met at the school was outstanding!
Jesse's mobility slowly began to improve! He could exercise his legs and do stretches and back bends. My friend Ed suggested I teach Jesse to point. I thought, "what a great idea!" The next day Dad and I went to the school to help Jesse, and we asked Jesse to point at one of the other students. We held his arm in position and Dad encouraged Jesse to point. "You can do it! You can do it! You can do it!" Then he pointed at the girl. One of the wonderful helpers let out a gasp of disbelief. Everyone was amazed!
One day I asked Jesse to blink for "yes" and "no". He did it right away.
In all this time, Jesse remained in good spirits, never complaining, always pleasant , and always ready to exercise! He would exercise even when he was falling asleep, barely able to keep his eyes open, but still wanting to work!
Eventually we made Jesse a laser pointer to put on his head. He picked it up instantly. Now he had a way to tell us what he thought.
We made a special hat for Jesse with a laser pointer. We put it on his head and he knew exactly what to do. I asked him to point out letters and numbers, and to everybody's amazement, he could read words and numbers, then he did math. Now he can really talk!
Any word I asked him to spell, he spelled correctly. I know this because I can't spell. Sometimes I wasn't sure, but he was!
One day I said there is a Church outside with a cross on top, where is it? Very far away, you could barely see it, Jesse picked it out in a second!
Grandpa says Jesse has perfect vision, he also picked out cars and trucks out the window!
Jesse had a large pizza box with words on it, so he could make sentences. Then we started to ask Jesse math questions. Examples: 10 -4 = 6; 4 + 4 = 8;
9 -2 = 7; and much more.
One day I asked him, "if you had 18 balls and you divided it by 3, what would the answer be?" He pointed out "6" without hesitation. I was amazed the he even knew what division was, but he knew the answer. Remember, I never taught him these things, I just asked him these questions, and he had the answer.
I asked him who made the world. Jesse said "God".
What hold s us on Earth, so we don 't float away? "Gravity" said Jesse!
One day I asked Jesse who was the first person he saw after he had his stroke? Jesse pointed at the word "Jesus" without hesitation .
Another time I said "where is Jesus" and he pointed to the rosary beads and the cross on the wall.
Then I said, "make the sign of the cross" and he did. How does he know these things? "Jesus". Grandma was a good teacher.
He also said Grandma taught him some at two-and-a-half years.
But could she teach him the full alphabet? Knowledge of the alphabet and how to use it, even the silent letters at two-and-a-half yea rs? And full knowledge of math, add, subtract, multiply and divide? I even asked him one day, kind of jokingly,
"do you know everything?" He bl inked his eyes "Yes". He wasn't joking.
One time when we were at my sister Mary's house, I said to Jesse, "There is a picture of Uncle Bob, the war hero, with his friend", point to Bob, and he did. How did he know? "Jesus".
Jesse was an angel, a saint, whatever you want to cal l him, he knew Jesus personally.
He said he saw our deceased relatives, Pat 's Dad, my Mom and Dad , Micheile's Mom.
Jesse was a young boy, but he had more courage than any man I know! Jesse was perfect, never sinned.