Miracle ex-Bolton Wanderers footballer Fabrice Muamba has shown off his new son for the first time and revealed he burst into tears when the tot was born as he was reminded of the fragility of his own life.
The former midfielder was effectively dead for more than an hour when he collapsed following a cardiac arrest during an FA Cup match last year but has now become a father for the second time.
In an interview with Hello! magazine, 25-year-old Muamba said of his new arrival Matthew: "I looked at him, this precious new life we'd created after I'd come so close to losing mine, and in that moment it just hit me that he wouldn't have been here.
"In that moment, it all came back and I just went - I lost it completely," he added about the birth last month.
Within months of his near-death experience he had made an astonishing recovery to the extent that he could take part in gentle kickabouts and record a seasonal edition of Strictly Come Dancing, as well as tying the knot with wife Shauna, 28, in October.
The couple, who posed with their four-year-old son Josh for the magazine, were already expecting their new boy at the time they married at Cheshire's Peckforton Castle but said they did not realise it at the time.
Shauna said her husband, who came to the UK at the age of 11 from war-torn Zaire unable to speak English, was a "calm and reassuring" presence at the birth on June 28.
"Then, when Matthew was delivered safely and they put him in Fab's arms, his composure just went and he had a total meltdown," she said.
He has now retired from professional football but hopes to continue to have a role in the sport as a pundit.
"I want to make the most of every precious day and one of the most important things I've learnt is that I don't have time to waste," he said.