New England Soccer Today

Reis Named MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

Longtime New England Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis, whose quick thinking in the immediate aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings allowed him to save the life of his father-in-law, was honored on Tuesday as the 2013 MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year.

Reis was yards away from the initial blast before he raced to the aid of John Odom, who was critically injured during the Apr. 15, 2013 terrorist attack. Before first responders were able to attend to Odom, Reis used his belt and jacket as make-shift tourniquets to stem more significant blood loss.

Odom was rushed to Boston Medical Center, where he spent more than two-and-a-half months before being released to Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, where he worked as an outpatient for two-and-a-half more months before finally returning home to Southern California in September.

In August, as Odom recovered from his life-threatening injuries and re-learned to walk, Reis raised more than $125,000 for the John Odom Recovery Fund at his annual golf tournament, where Odom opened the tournament with the ceremonial tee shot.

“Matt has always been a tremendous ambassador for our club, but his actions and response on April 15 really showed how amazing of a person he is,” New England Revolution president Brian Bilello said in a statement. “Matt has been our team’s humanitarian of the year the last three years for his fundraising efforts for various charities, but this year he absolutely deserves league-wide recognition from his peers, clubs around the league and media.”

In addition to his off-the-field heroics, Reis went unbeaten during the regular season (7-0-4) and posted five clean sheets, playing an important part of the club’s first postseason berth since 2009.

However, Reis’ seasoned ended in heartbreaking fashion. In the waning moments of the second leg of the Conference semifinals, the veteran keeper suffered a left quadriceps tendon injury that forced him to come off the pitch prematurely.

With a 5-7 month recovery time ahead of him, the Revolution declined his option for 2014, signaling that the 38-year-old Reis may have played the last game of his career.

Reis is the third Revolution player to win Humanitarian of the Year. Zak Boggs earned the honor in 2011, while Michael Parkhurst picked up his award in 2006.

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