After losing child to cancer, parents start Amazing Gracie Foundation
One-year-old Gracie Lawton of Mohawk was diagnosed with liver cancer last May. She lost her fight in January, but now her parents are using her memory to help other families with terminally ill children. Our Andrew Sorensen tells us what they're doing to help families create lasting memories with their children.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
MOHAWK, N.Y. -- This is how Gracie Lawton's family remembers her: "She loved to sing, she loved to dance. Most of all, she loved her big brother," said her mother, Lisa Lawton.
Her father, Geoff Lawton, added, "Gracie touched a lot of people's lives... more people than we will ever know."
She died from liver cancer a few months before her second birthday.
"I think our biggest fear, and people have told us not to worry about this, is her being forgotten," Geoff admitted.
When Gracie's cancer stopped responding to chemo, her parents weren't sure how much time they had left, and they wanted more memories.
Lisa recalled her conversation with the nurses, "We said to them, 'We want to take the kids to Disney World,' and she said, 'Go, go now.'"
But after paying for Gracie's cancer treatments, the trip was difficult to afford.
"We looked into a lot of wish foundations, and none of the wish foundations help children under two-and-a-half years old," Lisa said.
Friends and family pitched in for a trip that meant the world to them. Now, Gracie will touch more lives through Amazing Gracie's Gift Foundation, which her parents set up.
"Whether it be going outside, whether they want to go see Elmo, we want to help them achieve that," Geoff said.
The foundation will also create new memories of Gracie in the future.
"We should be in the future sending her to college, planning her wedding, putting all our effort into that, and we can't do that. So this is what we're going to do," Lisa said.
Her parents have photos and videos, and her four-year-old brother blows her a kiss every night before bed.
With Amazing Gracie's Gift, another family will have a chance to make one more good memory, too.
To sign up for their May 12 golf tournament in New Hartford, or to find more information on Gracie's story or Amazing Gracie's Gift, visit their website.