At first glance, this viral picture looks like a simple image of a car seat. In reality, it’s a devastating last car ride for a four-year-girl who recently lost her battle with cancer.
For the first three months of Ellie Walton’s life, her parents say their biggest problem was “deciding what brand of diapers to buy.” That all changed when their baby girl was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Over the next four years, Ellie astonished doctors by surviving a total of 17 surgeries and surpassing milestones they said she’d never reach. From simply rolling over as a baby to learning to walk and talk, she was an inspiration to all who knew her, particularly her mom, dad, and big sister, Ava.
Despite 17 surgeries, 28 rounds of chemo, 42 days of radiation, and countless days in the hospital, Ellie was a playful and loving child. Her mom, Sarah, told ABC News, “She was the kind of kid who would have brain surgery on Monday and by Tuesday she wanted to leave the hospital so she could get a Slurpee.”
In the beginning of January, Ellie became more active than usual. Then, suddenly, she stopped eating. Doctors told the Waltons she only had a few days to live.
On the morning of the 15th, Ellie’s breathing became shallow and labored. Knowing that this was the end, her family surrounded her bedside and spoke about Disneyland, dinosaurs, and her other favorite things. As her sister, Ava, sang “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star,” Ellie took her last breath.
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