A 6-year-old boy’s final goodnight to his younger sister was captured on camera and is tearing people’s hearts worldwide.
The photo was taken by Matt Sooter of Arkansas, whose 4-year-old daughter Adalynn “Addy” was identified as having a rare type of cancer.
According to Matt, a young child shouldn’t have to say goodbye to his playmate, closest friend, and younger sister.
The heartbreaking image elicited reactions from over 8,000 people. The parents are currently trying to spread awareness about this rare condition.
When the Sooter family learned their daughter had diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), a rare tumor with a brainstem origin, in November 2016, their world was flipped upside down.
For the next 18 months, Addy would have to put up with the tumor’s growth before her symptoms got worse.
Matt’s Facebook post described how his four-year-old daughter had rapidly deteriorated.
“Over the past day and a half, Addy’s symptoms have advanced quickly. She was her lively, cheerful self when she got up yesterday. Although we occasionally still visit our baby, she can no longer eat or swallow without difficulty, and she now spends much of her time asleep, so we have admitted her to inpatient care. Probably not much time is left for her,” he remarked on Facebook.
He encouraged any friends and family who wanted to bid their darling daughter a final farewell to get in touch with them in a very moving and tragic post.
The older brother Jackson was reluctant to leave his sister’s side, so Matt pleaded with followers to pray for her.
She passed away shortly after Jackson kissed his little sister goodnight and told her he loved her.
Only a few hours later, the family posted on the Facebook page Hope for Addy Joy – Fighting DIPG that their daughter had passed away.
“She transitioned from this life to the next in the same way she had lived—stubbornly, yet calmly and in the company of her loved ones. In the end, she wasn’t in any agony,” it said.
“While this is only a temporary farewell, our baby girl is greatly missed,”
Addy’s brain and spine tumors were donated to science in the “hopes of preventing future children from a similar fate.”
They explained their decision in a Facebook post: “Our sweet girl loved helping people and giving gifts, so we thought this would be an excellent way to show her giving heart.”
We all know someone impacted by this terrible illness, but it’s incredibly distressing when children are involved.
Peace be with you, sweet angel Addy.