Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A Tragic Turn of Events...

After Gavin died, I was contacted by a blog reader named Christine.  She had written a letter to the owner of Gillian's Wonderland Pier in Ocean City, New Jersey, after seeing a photo of Gavin riding one of their fire trucks on my blog.  SHE is the woman behind Gavin's fire truck on the boardwalk!  I wrote about the day we met her - and saw the fire truck for the first time - in THIS post.  It was a very emotional weekend.  We were in Ocean City to scatter some of Gavin's ashes into the Ocean off of a pier where we vacation every year... and then we were going to meet Christine (and her adorable daughter, Skylar) by the fire truck.  Meeting Christine was wonderful.  How do you thank someone, really, for doing something so incredibly selfless?  It seemed impossible.  We continue to be so grateful to Christine and Gillian's.  Every single time someone sends me a photo of their child on that truck... or every single time I see the photo of Gavin on that truck... or every single time we are there watching Brian on his brother's truck... I think of her and her lovely family.
This morning I woke up to an email from Christine that has rocked my world.  She wrote to tell me that, in a tragic turn of events, she found herself laying in a hospital bed next to her own son, Bode, who had died.  This all happened just last night.  Christine is in the Army and, unfortunately, was working three hours from her home in New Jersey when she got the call.  Bode had fallen into the family pool and drowned.  Imagine having to drive three hours to the hospital to find your child already gone.  Bode was four years old and leaves behind two sisters and a brother.
Since this morning, I have felt crippled with anxiety.  All through Brian's swim lesson... and all afternoon.  I am feeling so helpless.  I have been through this before myself so I can relate to what she's going through right now.  And I have only met Christine one time - on the boardwalk - to thank her. Yet I feel compelled to do something - anything - to help make this easier for her.  Yet I am frozen.  I suppose this is because I know all too well that there is no "magic thing" that anyone can do to make it better... or easier... or right.

* Update:  I decided to set up a fundraising page through "You Caring" - and to put the word out to anyone in Ocean City who would be willing to cater a luncheon.  In less than 12 hours, I had over $12,000 raised for Bode's family - and what seemed like every restaurant and caterer in Ocean City willing to provide food.  Once again, my Chasing Rainbows community came through - big time. *

 I want this woman.. this soldier who defends our country... this fellow mother who gave us a lasting legacy for our own son... to feel a hundred thousand arms wrapped around her right now.    

Losing a child is something that no parent should ever have to experience.  Imagine the worst possible pain - the worst thing that could happen to you - and then times it by a thousand.  My heart is broken for this family.  As we stood on the boardwalk laughing and smiling - our eyes filling up with tears thinking of Gavin on one of his many happy days in Ocean City... we could never have predicted that Christine would be walking in our footsteps only a year later.  Such a tragic turn of events.

God Bless you, Bode.  And God comfort your family who will miss you so much.  I hope they see your spirit in the ocean waves... feel your spirit in the ocean breeze... and find peace in the sand where your toes once danced.


(Bode's story posted with Christine's permission)





27 comments:

  1. This breaks my heart :( Many prayers being said for this family.

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  2. So sorry for their loss. I can't even imagine.

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  3. I'm so very sorry for this family.: (

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  4. Another amazing child lost to moms like us. Sending her strength.

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  5. Gavin and Bode are now running hand in hand in Heaven....
    Heavenly father, please wrap your arms around this family and bring them comfort, Amen.

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  6. Almost no words, I am so very sorry for this family! ! Lots of Love and prayers

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  7. In tears for this family. May our loving Father wrap His arms around them and let them feel His grace and mercy.

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  8. I would like to send some money for funeral. I can't send a lot since I recently had surgery and lost my job. Is there s gofundme account or another way to help?

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  9. I'm so very sorry... weeping as I share this and fingers crossed you will find someone that can help

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  10. Oh my i cant imagine. So sad to hear another mothers heart is breaking. Praying for their entire family. What a beautiful way to end this post and i hope many people can help them at their time of need. I wish i was closer and could do something to help. God bless

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  11. Healing thoughts going out to this sweet, caring Mom and to her entire family.

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  12. Crying....God bless Bode's family. Dear God...Please help them.

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  13. Oh my, my heart is breaking for this family. His Mom is in a way part of my family being in the Army, my daughter and son in law are soldiers so knowing what our military goes through I feela cconnection. Praying for Christine and her family. Praying they find peace in the tragic turn of events. From one Army family to another....love, hugs, and strength being sent their way!

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  14. How heartbreaking...im in tears for this poor family. Hope you get the hundred thousand arms to help support and show love to this poor family. Sending love and healing light.

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  15. I am so sorry. Bode is with Gavin playing in Heaven. I pray they will be comforted and that anyone who can will help them. Please send all of out condolences. God bless you also and your family because you know what this feels like. May God bless you all with peace also. Praying for them right now.

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  16. My heart is broken for this family. Praying for them.

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  17. I am so so sorry for you and your family Christine, I'm in the UK, so can't do much but tell you my thoughts and prayers are with you all, and I'll light a candle for Bode, may he rest in everlasting peace. I'm sure Bode will be playing with Darcy and Gavin. Praying for you all ��

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  18. Christine, your excruciating journey is just beginning. It is the journey of every parent who has lost a child. To illness, accident, whatever? The shock and disbelief of parent starts here, regardless of how they lost their child. How serendipitous that you were a reader of Kate's. I know of no Mother's blog better for a newly grieving Mom. God Bless Bode, and you and your family. Not just now, but in these ensuing years of such sadness. Amen.

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  19. My heart breaks for this family. My God wrap them in His arms with love.

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  20. Peace, Love & Prayers to Christine & her family. There are no words. May God give them strength to carry them through this tragic loss. RIP Bode.

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  21. I live in their town and also have a child with special needs. I speak for an entire community when I say we are absolutely heartbroken to hear of this tragedy. Your post is being shared all around, and we will once again come together to do whatever we can for one of our own. Thank you for sharing this, and rest assured we will be there beside Bode's loved ones through this.

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  22. I am so, so sorry for Christine and her family. My prayers are with them. Go with God, Bode.

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  23. Heartbreaking. Many prayers with Christine and her beautiful family.

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  24. My heart is breaking. I cant imagine the pain losing a child :( God bless you christine and your beautiful family.

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  25. My broken heart aches for them. No family should have to know how this feels. It's a terrible awful dreadful thing. I lost my Sweet Violet just shy of 5 months ago. I hate that Christine has to live this life with us, Kate. It's just wretched. I am sending so so much love to them now, and in the agonizing weeks, months, years. Your amazing Bode will never be forgotten. We will carry him in our broken hearts forever <3

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