Mom Casey and Dad Benjamin were overjoyed when Zoey Catherine Daggett was born healthy. However, unbeknownst to them, their daughter was born with a life-limiting condition.
Zoey lived a normal life until the age of five when during an outing with her parents in July 2016, she suddenly fell and started limping.
“She fell at a park, and she was limping like she broke something that was really, really bad.We eventually took her to the hospital because the whole left side of her body wasn’t working,” the mom, Casey said for Daily Mail.
Following some medical examinations, her parents received distressing news from doctors the next day, confirming that their daughter was suffering from a brain tumor.
“Three weeks later, the diagnosis came back as DIPG. We were in the hallway outside because Zoey was receiving radiation and we just thought: ‘Oh, cr*p’. We just thought: “Okay, this changes things”. We didn’t know what to do, where to go. We were told it’s pretty much a death sentence,” per Daily Mail.
Despite emailing every clinical trial they could find, the mom and her husband Ben were rejected by each one, as she explained.
“It was a really disheartening August and September,” she said.
After an exhaustive search, the family discovered an immunotherapy treatment trial in Germany. In October 2016, they flew to Cologne, where they rented an apartment and underwent treatment. Casey revealed to the Daily Mail that the trial proved successful for her daughter, Zoey.
“The tumor was shrinking, and Zoey was back to running fully with no side effects. She loved visiting the Christmas markets in Germany. We lived across the street from the Lindt chocolate factory, so she loved going to visit there.” said Casey.
Following a triumphant trial, the family of three headed back to their hometown of Fairport, New York, only to return three months later for additional medical care. Then, in April 2017, Casey and Ben observed their daughter limping again.
“An MRI showed that her tumor was growing back again.” said the mom.
She added: “The doctors told us the tumor was not responding to immunotherapy anymore.”
In June 2017, Zoey, the young girl, had already lost her ability to walk, eat, and speak due to the spread of a brain tumor.
Despite receiving treatment, her condition continued to deteriorate and she ultimately lost her battle on July 4, 2018.
“I woke up that morning and I just started bawling my eyes out and I told Ben that I could tell this is just going to be the last day,” Casey said.
The day after Zoey’s passing, the mom and dad posted a photograph of her final moments on her Facebook page, which they named “Zoey’s Light“.
The photo caption read: “Zoey is going to be shared with the world. Her love and light have been abundant, and we will continue to pay it forward and share love and light with the world.”
In addition to sharing the photo of their daughter’s final moments, Zoey’s parents, Ben, and the brave mother, also posted her funeral details on Facebook. According to the mom’s statement to the Daily Mail, they hoped to spread a message of hope by sharing Zoey’s story with others.
She said: “I shared it because even though it’s a painful moment, it’s a beautiful moment in our eyes. It was a kind of peaceful moment for Ben and me. This is our reality and we wanted to show people every side of it. Our path and our mission is to spread love and to spread it forward. Zoey would share food, share her toys, share chewing gum. She was full with love always even when she felt like utter poop. Still her happy, loving, giggling self. And we just want to be able to help others because that’s what our kid would have done.”
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