“I have faith that I will always keep fighting. But if I fight this alone, I will fail. But if you will walk behind, I have faith that I’ll never surrender.” - Matt Rupel to a room of FA supporters at his fundraiser in 2011.
Matt Rupel was an expert at creating community. He was soft-spoken at times but his wit, self-deprecation, and confidence are what drew people in; and then they were hooked, part of the FAITH Team, the Rupeloton, or Matt’s Ohana and thus supporters for the FA community.
For me, it was his determination that was so intriguing. Matt loved to travel, and he loved journalism. One Summer while he was attending Santa Clara University, he did an internship for a company that was working on a news app. They were located in New York City.
Matt probably never knew that this relocation to NYC might impact me but at that time I was struggling with my diagnosis and trying to figure out what to do with my future. Hearing of Matt’s internship and his adventure helped me to realize that I didn’t need to lower my expectations for myself because of FA.