Earlier this month, Dikembe Mutombo brought an 8-year-old child from his native Democratic Republic of Congo to the United States in order to help him receive the surgery he needed. The boy, Matadi Sela Petit, had a large tumor on the side of his face, and Mutombo wanted to help by setting him up with Beverly Hills-based Dr. Ryan Osborne for tumor removal. TMZ reports that Matadi died on Friday after he suffered a "rare and unpredictable genetic reaction to anesthesia" during his surgery.
The Dikembe Mutombo Foundation told TMZ, "We are devastated by the loss of Matadi and our heart goes out to his father, his mother, and the rest of his family, and all his old and new friends."
Matadi was reportedly transferred to the ICU after he went into cardiac arrest during the surgery, but he wasn't able to recover from his reaction to the anesthesia. Dr. Ryan Osborne volunteered to oversee the surgery after Mutombo told him about his case and how he had been shunned by society.
The heart-warming moment where Mutombo brought Matadi to the U.S. just over a week ago can be seen above.