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Angel Stories

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Mercedes Gilroy

February 17th, 2010 - April 24th, 2024

Mercedes was a miracle baby. When I was 21, I was told I would never have kids. It was a devastating blow, but I learned to accept it. Then, when I was 38, I found out that I was 12 weeks pregnant with what would be my only child. The news was a shock, but it was the best kind of shock.


Mercedes saved her momma.


She came along and gave me purpose, a reason to keep going even when life seemed impossible. She was her Papa's pride and joy, and man, did she change her grandpa from a grumpy guy to the giant teddy bear ever. She was a bright soul to many. She was the life of the party, and she had infectious joy and excitement for everything; she made all those around her smile.

I remember one time when we were camping, she befriended a family from a neighboring campsite and spent the entire weekend playing games and sharing stories with them.


Mercedes made friends everywhere she went, whether it was camping, staying in a hotel, or even walking down the road; she went out of her way to make a buddy and make everyone feel included.


She never met a stranger; this was exemplified throughout the friends that she made at other schools while playing sports. She played basketball and volleyball, and her favorite sport was Track and Field, where she threw the shot put, discus, and javelin.

She loved to swim in the lake, river, and ocean, most of all in the hotel pool; that girl was a mermaid on land. Her life impacted everyone around her, and for good reason, she was a bright light.


Mercedes also loved Jesus and made that known to anyone she met.


Music was always on, no matter where she was: in the car, her ear, or even the shower.


She attended Queets Clearwater Middle School and was set to graduate in the 8th grade this year.

Aura Moon Gladney

October 13, 2023 - March 12, 2024


Aura Moon Gladney was born to her parents Twazae and Jessica on October 13, 2023 at 10:13 AM at Trios Hospital in Kennewick Washington. She is the youngest of 14. Eliyjah, KaBella, Legend, Dream, Halo, Talayjah, Twazae Jr, ZaeVion, King, SaMyah, Trey, Nyzaiah and Hakeem.


She came into this world a little fighting soldier from the moment she arrived. While mom and dad thought it would be a normal day in the delivery room like before, they got the surprise of their life when they got checked in and 10 minutes later Jessica was rushed away for an emergency c-section. Thankfully the amazing and quick wit staff at Trios saved Jessica and Aura that morning. Aura was sent to the nursery and put on oxygen and Mom and Dad were told that she would be in there for a minimum of a week but not to get their hopes up. By the next day Aura proved everyone wrong and was in the room with Mommy and Daddy. All of the staff said what a miracle and strong little baby girl she was. They were all amazed. And called her birth a complete divine intervention.


For whatever reason earlier that morning Halo woke up early trying to wake up her mom and dad. And she just wouldn't go back to sleep like she normally would. Jessica asked Halo multiple times to please lay down so they could all get some rest but Halo had other plans. She was jumping and hitting her mom to wake her up. Thankfully she did. Because of Halo they were able to make it to the hospital in time and save Aura & Mommy. Twazae and Jessica both agreed that his late brother Davion was definitely behind Halo waking up Her mom that day.


With everything that happened that Friday the 13th, they knew they had to have a special, strong name the resonated with the universe. While Daddy chose Aura. Big brother Legend kept calling her Moon. And Thus came Aura Moon Gladney.

In Aura's short 5 months with us earth side, She left a lasting impact on all who knew her. She loved to be held at all times by mommy and daddy. She loved her parents and her siblings immensely. Her smile and sweet coos could light up anyone's heart and any room. She really was the happiest little baby girl full of love and light. She was strong, she was smart, she was so beautiful and most importantly she was so very loved.


Although Aura's time with us may have been cut tragically short, the essence of her spirit has been woven into the fabric of our lives indelibly.


Thank you, Aura Moon, for being our angel, our light, and our inspiration. We will love you and honor you, forever and always. May you rest in peace, our dearest Aura, knowing that your spirit will forever dance in our hearts.

Noah Jon Markstrom

January 20, 2013 - November 6, 2019


Noah Jon Markstrom was born on January 20th, 2013, he was the happiest, healthiest little boy ever. All of that changed on December 5th, 2017 when our world was turned upside down. Our bright, fun and energetic 4-year-old Noah was diagnosed with a brain tumor. In late November of 2017 Noah started not feeling well. Over the course of a few weeks his symptoms persisted. Based on good advice we took Noah to Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital. We walked into the ER on the morning of December 5th. Just minutes after getting a CT scan, the ER Dr delivered to us the horrible news. Noah had a brain tumor. would be admitted to the hospital immediately, and few days later have his first brain surgery. We were then informed that Noah had what is called Anaplastic Ependymoma.

A rare form of brain cancer, with about 200 pediatric cases per year in the United States. There were many, many complications after the surgery. Noah had damage to his cranial nerves. Noah had to re-learn walking, talking, eating, using his right arm and many other things. After 6 months of intense treatment and therapy Noah again began to thrive and even started Kindergarten on time in the fall of 2018. In early February of 2019, Noah started to get bad headaches. His health rapidly declined over the course of a few days and we would end up rushing him to the hospital. Noah’s doctors determined that his cancer had returned and a tumor was cutting off the flow of spinal fluid, causing severe pressure on his brain.

Noah would again have to have emergency brain surgery, all in an effort to buy quality time against an incurable spread of cancer. Fortunately, Noah felt very well through the mid part of 2019. We were again blessed with a spring and summer of family trips and special outings. Noah was granted a Make-A-Wish trip to Southern California to enjoy the theme parks and spend time with family. As fall approached, Noah was able to attend the first week of 1st grade before his health declined to the point he could no longer attend. Noah’s battle ended peacefully at home, surrounded by family on November 6th, 2019.Noah amazed everyone he met. It was Noah’s love for those who cared for him that inspired our family to start the Noah Jon Markstrom foundation.

After Noah’s passing, our family was contacted by Raise for Rowyn and offered financial and emotional support. That helping hand in our darkest hour was a hand up that truly blessed our family. We are dedicated to being involved with the Raise for Rowyn to help ensure more families like ours are able to receive the same gracious support we did.

Harlie DesArmo

April 2, 1998 - August 19, 2013


“Harlie was 15 years old. She was a 4 sport athlete, loved Jesus, was friends with everyone and was on a road of success.


Harlie and our other daughter Courtney were hit by a car right outside our driveway. Courtney survived and Harlie lost her life.


We have started a nonprofit called Harlie’s Angles where we help teens in need through Harlie’s memories.”

“Braxton was so full of smiles.

He left behind three older sibling.”

Braxton VanOrtwick-Headlee

August 12, 2022 - December 23, 2022


Peyton Broussard

December 16, 2023 - March 09, 2024


“Peyton was small but mighty, with eyes that twinkled like stars. A calm and gentle baby that would look up for your embrace and rejoice in your comfort. Peyton had an independent attitude and made sure his twin brother Paxton was okay! He loved lights, color, and enjoyed having long conversations. Our hearts ache for him, and we miss him terribly!”

Navey Johnson

January 21, 2023 - March 23, 2023


“She was the happiest baby. She put a smile on everyone’s face. We are so lucky to be her mommy and daddy. Not a day goes by that we don’t cherish every moment we got to spend with her. Forever in our hearts baby girl.”

Francisco Julian Valine

October 20th, 2021 - June 09th, 2024

Francisco Valine_edited.jpg

“He was a happy little boy even though he had HLHS and lung disease and was oxygen dependent he always had a smile in his face living his best life. He love to sing Coco melon songs, he loved dinosaurs and he was a fan of cars. Francisco always like to go for walks to go out and explore even though he was limited but every chance he got he would love it. He loved to eat bananas. He was G tube feed but he was learning how to eat. Francisco loved his family with all his heart he always made sure to show love to everyone who interact with him. My baby had love for everyone.”

Rylee Frankfurt

May 09th, 2019 - June 11th, 2019


Rylee was born 11 weeks early. She made her arrival on May 9th, 2019 at Tacoma General and spent 33 days in the NICU there. During that time she over came many different odds. Doctors said that she wouldn't make it through the first night. She was born with Kagami-Ogata Syndrome; which is a microdeletion of chromosome 13. She beat the odds by living and fighting for 33 days. She loved being the center of attention, hated having her feet tickled or even touched. Rylee enjoyed having her picture taken and showing off her bow of the day. She joined her grandma on June 11th 2019 after a long and hard battle fought. 

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