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Our daughter, Karley Jean Hodgins, was born on June 9, 1994. She was our first child and we were so very excited about having our baby girl. She had big brown eyes, brown hair and a beautiful smile. Karley was diagnosed when she was three months old as having a Dandy Walker cyst. This meant she required a shunt to help drain the CSF (cerebral spinal fluid) into her abdomen. She did very well with her shunt for her first year. The following ten months Karley experienced surgeries and numerous hospital visits. In July, soon after her second birthday, Karley’s shunt malfunctioned again and she died. We were devastated. Her death was unexpected. Within hours of her death my husband and I knew that we wanted to donate Karley’s organs to help others. We said our goodbyes and knew we were going to miss her terribly, however, knowing that her organs were going to help others in need gave us some sense of peace. Her memory and spirit and organs live on.
Organ donation and awareness is important to us. If sharing our stories and our pictures with others, can assist others in making the same choice we did, then it is worth it.
Steve and Lisa Hodgins
Mitch, Kelly and Kristy
Our Dearest Karley Jean
You lit up our lives when you came into this world.
Our precious “pumpkin” – our beautiful little girl.
With your beautiful smile, your button nose.
Those big brown eyes and wiggling toes.
You brought more joy to your Daddy and Mommy
Than words can say, we love you honey.
The time was brief, two years flies by.
But the wonderful memories will never die.
We loved your reaction when Barney came on.
Your excited giggle. The way your eyes shone.
Your excitement was contagious when, believe it or not
Your daddy started watching Barney with his little tot.
Our dearest Karley you had more than your share
Of tough times and pain, it just wasn’t fair.
You let us know that you knew we cared.
You were brave and strong even when you were scared.
When the going got rough you toughened it out.
Then that beautiful smile would replace the pout.
Your loving smile would let us know
You had made it through, you were ready to go.
“Hey Mommy and Daddy I’m O.K.”
Is what your brave smile would always say.
You tried so hard this one last time
To make it through, to make everything fine.
It seems however it was not meant to be
And from your struggle and pain you’ve been set free
You’ll be taken care of, you will be secure and safe
With your Grandpa Kern in another place.
You touched our lives deeply Karley Jean.
Rest peacefully and sweet sweet dreams.
(By Linda and Paola Iraggi)