Monday, December 07, 2009

She touched my heart

I have some heartbreaking news today. I just received a phone call from Ally's dad-and sadly, she passed away this morning. Words cannot convey how this family has touched my heart...and I know the heart of all of you. With all the other things that must be going on, I was so touched that Joe would take the time to thank me again for the photos. When I am blessed enough to get to know a family like this, it hits home why I love what I do. Please take a moment and send a prayer for the family, but I'd also like you to do something else.

I know a lot of you read my blog on a regular basis, but have never left a comment. Please take an extra moment and leave a message to the family. I think it will lift their spirits if they can see how much your lives were touched by their story. I will be sure that Nikki and Joe see each and every one of them. Thank you for helping me to let them know, YOU know how special Ally was! If you haven't read, or would like to view their post again, here's the direct link of Ally's story.


Jim Collins said...

There's really no way to get around things like this. They're too big. When death happens to adults, even when it's unplanned, somehow we all find ways to cope - to suggest that since the person had had a chance to live some and hopefully love, it might be easier. I don't know if it is or isn't, but I know that when death visits a child I always find myself getting a little angry with God, or whatever power or circumstance you may choose that runs this world. It's just not fair.

Please pass along my sincere condolences to this beautiful little girl's family. With two of my own, I can't imagine how painful this must be.

Thanks Debbie for doing beautiful work and for capturing her lovely smile. It is in times like this when I think the power of photography is best used.

Onward ... somehow.


Kathy & Dave Harrison said...

The moment I met this family through Debbie's amazing work, I felt as though, in some little way, that I knew them. I gazed at each photograph (many times) and saw the absolute happiness and love in the eyes of each parent. It wasn't just the photo's, the story, or the music, it was the beauty of how this family was dealing with the situation that God had given them and how truly brave they are. From the bottom of our hearts, sincere condolences to the family of "Sweet Pea".

Dave & Kathy Harrison

Debbie said...

Heartfelt condolences to this beautiful family as they mourn the too early loss of such a special little girl. May the light of her smile, as caputured in these photos, bring peace as her family travels the painful journey of grief. God bless. Debbie Swanson Centi, Auburn, CA

Beth said...

I'm so saddened by the loss of Ally. Its obvious in her family photos and your story what a beautiful life she lived. She had the joy of knowing she was loved and gave so much love in return.

I know her parents will always consider themselves lucky for the time they had with her, and she will continue to fill their hearts with love.

My thoughts will be with them and all of those who love her!

Elizabeth said...

There are no adequate words. Our thoughts are with Ally's family. I hope they know there are many people out there who came to know them through this blog sending wishes for comfort and peace tonight and in the weeks and months ahead. God bless.

Elizabeth Myers, Raleigh NC

Pam said...

Words don't come easy when you are talking about the loss of a child. Ally's story and photographs will remain in my heart forever. To lose a child is something that none of us want to think about. Please extend my deep condolences to Ally's family.


Laurie Ann Martin said...

What a beautiful family and what a blessing this little girl is. She had so much love to give. I dont know why God takes these angels but they leave too soon. The family was so lucky to have documented their their life and very blessed to have you as the photographer Debbie.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful thing to have these pictures capture your time spent with your lovely daughter.

Working through your grief will take time. Knowing that you have all those special memories will help you all pull through.

May you remember you have the support of many who will come to your aid when you need it. Until then, god bless you.

Kathy Tanke, Broomfield, CO

Stephen Knuth said...

God Bless their family and be with them in this time. You captured her and that family will cherish those memories forever!!

Don Pope said...

My heart goes out to this family. I have to say that I can't imagine what they are going through. Although my family is a stranger to this family, we all can feel the pain of this type of loss. Please offer condolences to the family in behalf of my family.

Don Pope

Samantha Schumacher said...

Nikki and Joe

I know that I will not have the right words to take away the pain and anguish that you are feeling right now. But your daughter, Ally, was truly a blessing every day that she was with you. I know that you saw each day as just that, a blessing, and showered her with the love and affection that you felt for her.

Just know that she is with our Father in heaven now and is waiting for you on that wonderful day when we will all be together with Him.

Thank you so much for sharing her with all of us through Debbie's photographs. Your family truly touched my heart as well as the hearts of many.

Father, God, I pray for peace and healing for Ally's family. Please help them to know that Ally is with You now and that you are protecting her and keeping her.

Anonymous said...

My prayers are with your wonderful family at this special time. I met your beautiful girl through Debbie's awesome pictures. Magic touched everyone that saw the love and spiritual power that flowed through those pictures. I pray for strength and peace with the love and memories that will always be a part of you and your family. May God bless you and your family.
Rev. Louise

Smith Gallery Photography said...

my heart goes out to this family... What a beautiful little girl! I am so sorry for your loss. You will be in my thoughts and prayers today.

Colleen said...

Wow, I was terribly saddened after reading Debbie's blog today. Although I didn't know Ally and her family I feel as though I got a glimpse of the beautiful family through Debbie's pictures and slideshow.

My heart goes out to Nikki, Joe, & baby Josie as well as their friends and families. I can't imagine how hard it is to lose a child, especially one as beautiful and caring as Ally. The love that was shown in the photos says a lot about what a loving and caring family Ally is a part of. The smiles on her face and the sparkle in her eye shows what a beautiful and well loved little girl she was.

Please pass along my condolences and prayers to Ally's family during this most difficult and sad time. I pray that the memories and loving pictures of Ally bring them peace during their grief. God Bless them!

strohlie said...

I watched the slideshow that you made, Debbie, and it is just breathtaking. I sort of wish that every one could be made with that much love and every mother's smile that knowledgeable of how precious her gifts are. Thank you for sharing and thank you to Ally's Mom and Dad for enjoying her & sharing her. Touched, Pamela

Anonymous said...

First, I would like to thank you Debbie for capturing the very essence of the agape this family has and for letting God use you in such a wonderful way. Our family will never forget you and what you've done.

At times like these, it is not always easy to understand why God allows things like this to happen but I cling to Romans 8:28. God has shown me time and again that He knows exactly what He is doing. All circumstances are for good.

I am certain she is in Jesus' arms free of the limitations of her little earthly body. I am also certain that I will see her again and she will tell me about all the things she wanted to say. She taught us much and I'm forever grateful to Ally and will miss her more than words can say.

Lastly, a humble thank you to all for your kind, thoughtful words. Please take with you Joe and Nikki's message. Stop and hug your children and let them know you love them, not just in words, but in everything you do.


AB said...

The lasting image of Ally in every photograph is her seems to transcend space and time so beautifully. I pray that her family and friends will forever keep that radiant smile in their hearts- Ally shared it for a reason. Nikki and Joe, remember that she not only meant so much to you, but even to complete strangers who never met her. What an incredible gift to have a daughter that did that for so many people; even if for just a brief time.
~Ali Brown

Diana Valencia said...

Sweet Ally is a daily reminder of God's love. Her smile brightened our classroom. Thank you for sharing her with us. Please take comfort knowing that Ally's little body is healed and she is happy, at home, with our heavenly Father.
God Bless You.
Diana Valencia

Kay Beaton said...

Debbie - beautiful slideshow - what a gift you gave the family and they gave you! I'll be praying for Ally's family that their hearts heal but that they always remember the joy they share and that beautiful little spirit of Ally's - I love her smiles!

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