This year, pregnant Michigan woman Carrie DeKlyen faced the heartbreaking decision of whether to undergo experimental treatment for brain cancer, or to save her unborn daughter’s life by forgoing treatment altogether.
37-year-old Carrie was diagnosed with glioblastoma—a tumour that can affect the brain and spinal cord—in April. When she and her husband Nick learnt she was pregnant with her sixth child, doctors advised that they would need to terminate the pregnancy in order to be accepted into a clinical trial for experimental treatment. But Carrie chose to keep her unborn child and sacrifice her own life.
“The doctor said if you don’t terminate this baby, Carrie, you will die,” Nick told PEOPLE in August. “But it was Carrie’s decision and I said, ‘What do you want to do?’ She said, ‘We’re keeping it.'”
According to local media outlet MLive Michigan, Carrie gave birth to a daughter named Life Lynn DeKlye on September 6, 24 weeks early.
After Life Lynn was born, Carrie remained in hospital and was taken off life support. She died the next day.
Now, husband Nick has been dealt another devastating blow. The father announced on the Facebook page ‘Cure 4 Carrie’ that Life Lynn had passed away on Wednesday.
“It is with great sadness and a absolutely broken heart that I tell you Life Lynn passed away last night,” he wrote. “Carrie is now rocking her baby girl. I have no explanation of why this happened, but I do know Jesus loves us and someday we will know why. The grief we feel is almost unbearable, please be praying for our family.”
Nick’s sister, Sonya Nelson, told USA Today that she had broken the news to Life Lynn’s sibilings.
"I told Lelia — who is 4 — Life was really sick, and she had to go live with Jesus and with Mommy,” she recounted. “And she said, 'She had to go, too? Why?'"
Nick also told the family's supporters on Facebook that Life Lynn would be buried with her mother.
A GoFundMe page has been set up for the DeKlyen family. You can donate here.