Meinholz enjoys 'special weekend'

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For one weekend, MHS senior Matt Meinholz had the opportunity to be a Duke and a North Carolina basketball fan.

Matt and his father, Marv, spent four days experiecing the sights and sounds of both campuses two weeks ago.

"They each had a special glow about them as they began talking about their very special weekend,'' Matt's mother, Karen, wrote on the family's CaringBridge webpage.

Matt was diagnosed with brain cancer in August.

They took a tour of the UNC campus, seeing most of the major athletic facilities, on Thursday. They watched a Duke practice on Friday and Matt had a long conversation with Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski after he was interviewed by ESPN.

Krzyzewski was very interested in Matt's story because Duke University Hospital is a leader in research for Medulloblastoma tumors, Karen wrote.

"He was very personable and asked to have his picture taken with Matt,'' Karen wrote.

They also met many of the ESPN Game Day announcers and crew members, including Hubert Davis, Digger Phelps, Jay Bilas and Rece Davis.

"Digger was able to spend a few moments with Matt and shared a few special and inspirational gifts that Matt will always treasure,'' Karen wrote.

Matt also spoke with Dave Telep, the ESPN high school recruiting analyst.

They spent Saturday morning at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Matt even helped sideline reporter Erin Andrews with her live interviews.

"The atmosphere was indescribable,'' Karen wrote. "He really didn't mind being put to work.''

Just before the game started, Matt met North Carolina coach Roy Willams and ESPN announcer Dick Vitale.

Trish Ferguson helped set up the event.

"We have many great pictures and memories that will last a lifetime,'' Karen wrote. "This weekend was truly a gift. First to be given this opportunity AND that Matt was well enough to go and participate. We are very thankful and know this experience will continue to help carry Matt through his next days of treatment.''