I was shocked and saddened by the tragic death of an Italian calciatore (soccer player) last Saturday during a partita (match). At the age of 25, Piermario Morosini, a midfielder for Livorno, suffered a cardiac arrest and died on the campo (field). All thirteen partite that were to be held last weekend for both the Serie A and B were immediately cancelled.

The next day at the mezza maratona (half marathon) in Florence, we held a moment of silence for Morosini. After the initial wave of sadness, I felt a deep sense of appreciation that I was alive, but most of all that I was able to feel something for someone I had never met and knew virtually nothing about.

Every day on the news, I heard more about Morosini and the tragedies that had befallen him during his short life. I discovered that we had two important events in common: we both lost our mothers in 2001 and our fathers in 2003.

He has been depicted as a man who took from his pain and lived life to the fullest. The photos Iíve seen of him always show him smiling. They broadcasted a few tweets that he wrote prior to his death and they were filled with much love and joy.

Three things I learned about Morosini gave me great comfort: he was happy, he fulfilled his dream of becoming a professional soccer player, and he was deeply in love with his girlfriend.

I was touched by the response by the Italian Soccer League as well as the teams to cancel the partite out of respect. It made me feel proud to live in a country where people truly believe that each life is precious. All the partite will begin again this weekend, and at each partita, one minute of silence will be dedicated to Morosini. May he rest in peace.

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