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Light a Light for Mito

Light a Light for Mito

For our loved ones we miss so dearly, we light a light and remember you.

Each year during the Wednesday of the third week of September, as we celebrate and join together to raise awareness for mitochondrial disease across the globe, we remember those who have lost the battle with mitochondrial disease and ask that friends and family "Light a Light" in their memory.  Please send your photos and memory wishes to us at


Kenley Montes, 5/25/04 - 1/25/18 

 Our precious daughter Kenley taken too soon from Kearns-Sayre Syndrome.  We miss you everyday.

Owen, 6/28/18-6/18/19

We are physically suffocating in our raw grief as we figure out how to endure this life without Owen. My husband and I are unsure what our purpose is now, and what life means without our beautiful baby boy, but we have committed every breath of every day to continue fighting Owen’s battle against Mitochondrial disease for him and we won’t give up the fight until there is a cure... so that one day other families will not have to outlive their precious children affected by this awful disease.


 Our son Derek - gone too soon.

Robert Graham Collins, 11/17/15-1/24/17

We lost our son Graham in January 2017, just a few days after he was diagnosed with Alpers' Disease. In the 14 months Graham lived, he showed us his bravery, strength, and silly personality. Alpers' disease took him away from us too soon, but we know that Graham's impact continues to this day. We hope by raising awareness, talking about these terrible diseases, and through fundraising, we will find a cure to save other families the heartbreak we experienced. There is hope, and together, we can achieve it. We love you forever, sweet baby Graham. #growgrahamgrow

Gerald Sacunas, 5/1/56-5/14/17

 My wonderful husband... I will love you, always and forever!  (MELAS)

Precious angel, Sabrina, 8/29/00-8/1/08

Incredible life lessons taught and admired by many, and a smile to never be forgotten ... love & miss my baby girl.

Rebekka Maelynn Sallee,  2/13/04-9/18/2016

She taught me about life, it was supposed to be the other way around. Not a minute goes by that I don't like of you. 

Grace Caskey, 03/06/05-08/17/17

My beloved daughter Grace, who was the brightest ray of love and sunshine to everyone she met. I'm filled with gratitude that we lived and cherished each day as if it were our last. Her beauty remains etched in our souls. We will love and miss her every moment of forever.

Allen C. Edwards, 4/29/14-3/23/17

I will cherish his smile, laugh, and all the good times.

Jennifer Lee Patrick, 7/21/86-11/16/86

Kaitlynn, 8/7/01-3/25/06

This is Kaitlynn. We lost her to Leighs Disease when she was 4 years old.


This is my grandson AJ. We lost him to this disease at almost his 13th birthday. He had the most beautiful eyes and smile; he lived his life with his great mom,dad, and sister. He's sadly missed. Love him and miss him lots.

Michaela Rae, 7/8/93-11/4/03, mitochondrial disease Complexes 1 and 3 impacted

Ruth Crane, 9/19/33-1/2/12

Ruth, devoted mother, grandmother and wife, you spent all your life without reading what was wrong. We will never forget you, wonderful person, God is taking care of you now.  Love from us all, until we meet again.

Nathan Mowrer

Nathan passed 13 years ago at age 7 from suspected MELAS. Not a day goes by that we don't miss him.

Colten Lee Abell, 8/7/15-12/28/16

My son Colt is dearly missed by his family. We were lucky to have him with us for 16 months. At 10 months is when the symptoms started. We were in the hospital 41 days, which changed our lives forever. Had no idea my son would go through so much. We, of course, never left him in there alone but so very thankful to all the nurses doctors and countless other people. I miss my son every minute and losing him was so unfair because of this horrible disease. I pray the world will be aware of this to hopefully one day soon there will be a cure or even better treatments. So very sorry for anyone who has to endure such horrific situations caused by this disease. I love you, Colt, and know you're daddy's angel and will be happy to reunite with you again in heaven.

 Melani Rebekah Mehana Fu, 03/07/08-01/29/12

Kathryn Nicole Cole (Katie), 12/28/94-6/15/17

Katie fought a relentless battle with unwavering courage and kept her spirits up, no matter how difficult things became. We love you, Sweetie, and you'll always be in our hearts. TTFN

Una Pozon, 2/19/08-5/21/15 

She never had the energy to do much in her life except make us all feel loved.

Bethany Lewallen, 11/25/95-10/12/15

We miss your smiles and your giggles 
We miss your sweet spirit
We miss YOU, baby girl...

Erin Flynn

Remembering and loving my daughter Erin. Erin passed on February 7,  2014.

Ava Merrill, 7/8/14-3/17/15

We lost my beautiful granddaughter when she was just 8 months old. In loving memory of our sweet angel Ava.


Corynna Strawser, 04/28/97-12/11/13

 Adrian Corona, 04/17/17-07/18/17

Adrian Corona is our first son; unfortunately, we lost the battle against mitochondrial disease RRM2B. This was a silent death and we had to let our baby Adrian rest and let him go to heaven, where I know he is now & where he will always be. Our little angel, we never would have thought in a million years we would go through this devastating experience. God allowed us to have him for such a short time but, for that time, we are thankful. We were the happiest family, too. We feel as if it was a beautiful dream that we will never forget. He knows how much all his family loves him and will never forget him. Baby Adrian will always and forever be in our hearts. Adrian was strong and fought hard. You will never be forgotten, Adrian Corona, our little hero. Mom & Dad love and remember you always.

Robert Donal Devine, xxxx

My son passed away on March 10, 2017. He fought a good battle to this horrible disease. He was 10-1/2 years old. My heart is broken and I miss him every second of every day.
Lorene Devine, Mom to a Mito Angel in Heaven


In loving memory of Carys Karpp, 4/23/2004-4/14/2013

I miss you every second and every minute of each and every day. I love you.

Rachel Anne Flynn, 01/25/01-03/18/09

Rachel was my sister. I still remember the first day we brought her home. She was intelligent, funny, and kind. The doctors didn't figure out what was wrong until it was too late. Many of their interventions made the problem worse. We need more research. Better research. Actual diagnosis and treatment options. Thank you for the work you're doing to help other children like Rachel.

Mito Angel Scott


Aspyn Block, 11/14/01-7/15/02 

Loved and missed more than words could ever describe!

Carter Buffum

In loving memory of Carter Buffum. Warrior of 7 years, from Michigan, who passed on May 19, 2016.

Leslie Whitt-Williams, 6/17/88-10/21/12

Rina Goldberg

Our daughter, Rina, lost her battle with Mito on December 29, 2010, two weeks after her 15th birthday. Rina was passionate about raising disease awareness and making a difference in this world. She left this world with this message: "Love Life, Dream Big, Be Positive."

Before she passed away, Rina wrote a fictional film, "The Magic Bracelet." As Rina dreamed, it was produced and premiered in Hollywood in May of 2013."The Magic Bracelet" fulfills Rina's final wish. Some of her final words to her mom were, "Promise to take care of my film." Make A Film Foundation is proud to have been able to be a part of making this extraordinary dream come true. "The Magic Bracelet" stars Bailee Madison (Parental Guidance), Hailee Steinfeld (Pitch Perfect 2), Jackson Rathbone (Twilight Franchise), J.K. Simmons (Oscar-Whiplash) and James Van Der Beek (Dawson's Creek). The film was adapted by Academy Award winner (Juno) Diablo Cody and directed by Jon Poll (Charlie Bartlett). Rina's hope was that her film would continue to spread awareness about "Mitochondrial Disease."The film has been shown at over 40 screenings globally and has won 10 awards. Available on DVD. For more info:

While each step of Rina's film is so very bittersweet because she is not here to see it, we know she will always be in the director's chair.

We thank MitoAction for giving us a space to be able to honor our remarkable children together. We miss Rina every moment more than words can say.

Stacy and Ari Goldberg

In loving memory of all those we have lost to mitochondrial disease

With Much love from the Telford Family in Queenland, Australia.

Allen Cannon Edwards

Leela Row, 7/25/13-8/7/14

Leela, we love you and miss you!

Brielle Lana Harmon, 11/22/11-10/19/14

Loved and missed by so many.
"Bree Bree" was such a strong and courageous little girl through this battle, but she was also such a happy little girl with the most amazing smile which we will cherish forever.  FOREVER OUR HERO!

Daithì Hasson O'Doherty, 11/5/14-3/5/16

Missed so much by his mammy, daddy big sister Farrah and his grannies and granda, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.

Khristen Abshire, 7/18/97-3/9/13

I lost my 15=year-old daughter to Mito 3 years ago. She was my joy, my reason for living, and my best friend.

Sailor Isabel Assis, 7/23/15-6/10/16

Sailor was our first born and the light of our lives. We loved our little princess more than anything. Sailor had troubles when she was first born but after several tests and her miraculously recovering we thought it was just a little mishap and our precious baby was healthy. But at 7 months she started having problems again and she rapidly deteriorated over the next few months. The morning we received the diagnosis of Leigh's syndrome she had troubles breathing and was rushed by ambulance to the PICU. She was intubated and after 3 weeks we had to make the heart-wrenching decision to remove life support. We miss and love her more every day.

Sandra K. Russell, 5/5/56-8/6/08

In each of her roles, wife, daughter, mother, sister, aunt (here with her lovely niece Anna), Sandra brought passion, joy, and energy. She faced MELAS with strength and grace and left nothing on the table. Sandra is sorely missed by all who were blessed to be part of her life.

Danica Wilson, 3/25/10-12/17/15

Sara Montgomery

Treasure each day you have with your child. If your child asks you to play a game with them and you have laundry to do, let the laundry go another day or do it later after your child is in bed. Take the time to spend with your child. You never know if you will get another chance.

Jacob Hallberg

We keep Jacob in our hearts and honor his life every day by trying to live in the moment, express kindness, and love life the way he did.

Connor Troy, 6/30/00-4/16/13, Partial Cytochrome c oxidase deficiency

Connor was the happiest boy. Always smiling!  He never complained even though he was probably always in pain. He loved to hold your hand and would ask everyone he met to play the memory game or yhatzee.  He loved yellow.  Can't believe you are 16 now. We miss you, Connor!

Diego -- Fought MELAS until 2014

"A warrior must take care that his spirit is not broken."
To our warrior angel Diego. Your love and strength continues to inspire us. We miss you and will love you until the end of time.

David Bowen

In memory of my lovely Husband David (Dave) taken by M.E.L.A.S nearly two and a half years ago. Loved and never forgotten from your loving wife Joan. Xxx

Bethany Lewallen, 11/25/95-10/12/15

Our precious Bethy Boo, our oldest daughter who was and remains our inspiration daily. Even as MELAS robbed her of the ability to speak, swallow, walk, and eat, she never lost her amazing smile or her faith in God and our Lord Jesus Christ. She lived her life as a testimony, and we miss her so very much. 
We love you, baby girl!!

Hayden Anthony Hamilton 03/05/08 - 06/13/11

We love and miss you SO much!!

Gabriel Ruebelmann, 4/27/05-4/15/15

Desmond Gray

We miss and love him very much.

Alyssa Brooke Douglas, 5/21/96-8/5/14

I wish that you had known the impact you made on people, lives that you changed.

William Reed Jr.

On August 15, 2016, we lost an amazing man to MELAS. William A Reed Jr was the father of 5 and the soulmate of 1. He  never gave up the fight. He always shared with others about his disease and would encourage them to "Live for today, because tomorrow is not a guarantee."

I have many memories of Bill, of his love, compassion, and ability to laugh and live. I think the biggest memory I have would be a Christmas after stroke number 4 where we sat down with the children and asked them their memories. The answers we expected where far from what they said. They said they remember the water fights, game playing, and dates with dad ... Bill was crying because he knew that his time was short, but that the kids had amazing memories to remember him with.

I remember a Halloween just after stroke number 3 where we were out looking for costumes, and Bill bent over to look at something ... but I had "lost" him. That year he chose to dress up as a zombie and went to rehab at the hospital. He loved scaring the therapists. Then there was the one a couple of years later where he went in a hazmat suit. At that time I was managing a hospital gift shop and he was volunteering that day. He loved the concerned looks he got walking around the hospital.

There where times he would come home from work and tell me about someone without money to buy food, and we would go shopping in our cupboards to feed them. When he worked in a job that had him traveling all over the USA to install computers he made tapes for the kids to listen to ... he read them bedtime stories so they would not miss him. Our last camping trip was with a group of friends and family. Our group entered a sand castle building contest, and won 2nd place. He loved being by the ocean and spending time with family and friends. It was only a few months later that stroke numbers 6 & 7 took his brain away. It would be years later after stroke number 9 that his body would be released.

There are so many good stories to share of him and his life.

Erin Elyse Flynn, 9/29/84-2/7/14

Jack Jensen, 1/17/06-2/3/07

Jack had cardiomyopathy caused by mitochondrial respiratory complex1 deficiency. He always had a smile on his face and there's not a single day I don't miss him. I know a piece of me will always be missing until we are together again.
"So come with me, where dreams are born, and time is never planned.
Just think of happy things, and your heart will fly on wings, forever, in Never Never Land!"
Love you forever my very own Peter Pan xxxx

ReeNa Holleran, 6/8/89-3/30/09

In memory of our daughter ReeNa Holleran.  It’s been 7 years since she left us. Since that terrible disease (MELAS) took her from us.  We miss her so much.  ReeNa was so strong to fight this.  The pain and suffering she went through.  Love you ReeNa.

Isaac Farooq Malik, 9/27/08-1/24/10

Isaac was the most gentle, beautiful, loving little boy. He brought joy to our world, and changed it forever. He is dearly missed but oh so loved! As what would have been his 8th birthday approaches, I often wonder what he would have been like as a big boy. Love you, Isaac, always, Mummy xxx

Amy Jeannie, 5/23/14-3/13/16

Alyson/Aly Schwenk, 2/8/81-4/13/15

Aly saw the good in each person and made each day memorable. She believed in 'Paying it Forward" in kindness and caring about others. Her leaving us has left a great void in our hearts. However, her legacy of selfless Love will live on in our hearts and through her artwork and poetry.

Kennedy Lynn Burgess, 9/12/01-5/6/16

Our princess Kennedy lost her battle with Mito (Leigh's syndrome) on May 6, 2016 at 14 years old. While she had many struggles with her illness, she showed us that life is precious and to try to be happy. She smiled through so many of those struggles. She was loved by so many and we sure do miss her smile. I am sure she is watching over all of us, especially her little sister Lauren, who is also fighting mitochondrial disease. Keep dancing with the angels, baby girl!

Maiya Blackmon, 10/15/15-4/2/16

In loving memory ... Maiya was diagnosed with Leigh's disease. Maiya had a contagious smile and started rolling over early. She had a very special and unique bond with her older brother, who misses her greatly. She reacted to her mom's voice in ways that are magical. She stole her daddy's heart immediately and they played dress-up together. Her na na has a soft spot that only she can fill. She is greatly missed and loved forever.

Laney Daniel, 11/29/85-3/25/16

Katelynn Joselle Misola, 5/29/11-2/24/15

Allie Remarski, 12/26/88-10/5/13

Allie was beautiful inside & out. She LOVED her Family & Friends. She had a beautiful spirit & would give of herself unconditionally. Her smile lit up a room & her laughter was contagious even on the toughest days. Allie fought Mito until she took her last breath. She is an inspiration to so many, especially us. She wanted to be remembered as a sports enthusiast & an advocate for those who couldn't speak for themselves. She is missed & loved every minute of every day. 

Brenan Alijah Petty, 11/06/13-10/08/14

It has been almost a year now since Brenan received his angel wings. We noticed something was wrong at 3 months. By 6 months it was determined possible Leigh's. The disease seemed to be progressing little by little. At 9 months it was determined he could no longer breathe on his own. The last of August 2014, he received a trach. He seemed to be doing well until he started having infections. We decided near the end of September to have another MRI to see how much it had changed. By then it had taken over his brain stem. His kidneys were beginning to shut down. His mother had to make a decision no mother ever wants to make. The day before he was to be removed from the machine, Brenan passed away on his own. We miss him every day but know he is no longer suffering. His short life touched so many lives.

Morgan Danielle Gilbreath, 8/5/02-11/8/14, PDHD, Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Deficiency

Morgan was a beautiful girl with a laugh that was extremely contagious. Her smile would light up a room, and her hugs could turn a bad day into a great day. She is truly missed by so many, but still loved. Morgan, we love and miss you so very much. We now know you are dancing in the sky, singing with angels and eating ice cream with Grandpa. XOXO

Autumn Ruth Kenney, 6/11/08-5/31/15

Autumn is so loved & so beautiful. She had Leigh's Disease with Complex 4 Deficiency Surf 1. She fought a long hard fight but lost her battle 11 days prior to her 7th birthday & is now flying free with the Angels. Autumn was loved by so many & even though my heart is breaking I know she is free.

Caleb Jason Jacobs, 4/29/10- 9/19/12

Caleb was an amazing kid with a magnetic personality. He was diagnosed with Leigh's Disease at 18 months old and passed away 11 months later. We will miss him always.
Mom, Dad, Alyssa, Allison, and Jordyn

Wardell Williams-Gray, 2/15/91-12/31/01, Mitochondrial Encephalopathy

Michael C. Vassallo, 3/9/73-3/24/15, MELAS

Loving husband and father, missed so much.

Jayden Rieffel, 12/23/10-09/23/12

Jayden lost a 21-month battle to Leighs disease & Mito depletion. His twin brother, Joshua, 33 weeks gestation,  never got to take a breath. 

Bonnie Codier

Missing our sweet Bonnie, who left us this past February to join her Lord and Savior in heaven. She ran her race with everything she could, and finished, having changed so many lives. We'll love you forever, Bonnie!! Dance unfettered!!

Brayden Burge, 9/29/04-10/11/13

Joshua Klingler, 2/26/13-12/2/14, Leigh's disease

His smile was contagious and so was his laugh! He brought us so much joy!! He lives in our hearts until we meet him again someday along with our Savior Jesus.

Mack Michael Harrington, 7/25/07-9/22/09, mtDNA 8993T>G Leighs disease

Eternal life with Jesus forever❤

Aiden Yong-Yeon Lee, 04/03/06-11/06/14

We miss your laughter and your silly jokes, but most of all your snuggles.  You taught us all so much in your short time here.  We miss you more each day; we love you, Peanut.

 Samya Haddad, 3/17/94-12/10/02, Leigh's

Samya had a heart of gold and lived her life with pure love and her love was contagious to everyone that she met. She is missed every day dearly.

Leanna Haddad, 5/5/97-3/20/05, Leigh's

Leanna had a  personality and a giggle that touched everyone and is loved and missed dearly.

Briony & Anneliese

I have three babies who were affected by mitochondrial disease.  Two are pictured. Briony died in July 1985 at the age of 14 months.  She spent lots of time in & out of Great Ormond St. Anneliese was my second who died in 1980 at the age of 11 months. Not pictured is Alexandra, who died in 1978 aged 6 days. My babies were beautiful with their white blonde curly hair & brought us much joy in their short lives. Those were the early days of Mito when it was thought to be very rare.


 Noah passed away May 11, 2015. He was an angel on Earth, loved by those that barely new him and adored by those that did. He loved to read, watch his D's (DVDs), and play on his iPad. Favorite memory when he was 6, just a few months before he passed, was when he let go of the railing and walked up the last step of stairs himself for the first time. He was so proud of himself.

Scott Vernon, 8/27/73-9/19/85

I carry you in my heart forever. We need a cure for this terrible disease that took Scott away from us.

Carl Mason, 10/27/92-1/23/13

Carl, who had Leigh's disease, loved animals, swimming, and playing on his XBox. He had a great sense of humor and never let his limitations stop him from living life to its fullest. He is missed by all who knew him and his absence is felt daily.

Jason Brindle, 1/26/71-4/7/11, MELAS

My wonderful son and best friend, intelligent, caring, adventurous, funny and many more adjectives. A son anyone would be proud of. Struck down with MELAS. Life is very cruel and he deserved a better reward for all his hard work and kindness. I miss him every single day and feel guilty because I couldn't help him. I hope his death will not be in vain and that treatments can be discovered and a cure for mitochondrial disease can be found sometime soon.

Glenn Hodges Floyd, 10/08/42-08/10/99

 Silently you suffered, still always with a smile. After two succeeding dignoses of mitochondrial disease, we now know why. You left us at 56 years young, you are still living in our hearts today. We love and miss you so much. 

 Matthew Lee Dugas, 4/6/05-4/20/15

Matthew, you will always be the completion of me. I love and miss you more with every passing day ...

Bob Boyle, age 62, MERRF

Bob always lived life to the fullest and encouraged others to do the same. His favorite thing was scuba diving; he had such a love for the ocean. He was one of the strongest people, which we will always remember. We miss and love him so much.

Jimmy "The Big Guy" McKay, 11/2/06-12/27/07, Complex 1

For someone here for such a short time, it is amazing the change you made in the world. Hugs, kisses, zerberts, eskimo kisses, and big slobbery puppy dog kisses!

Kyle Weatherford, 11/2/92-4/3/99, Alpers

We miss him every day. He was so full of life. Had a beautiful smile and laugh. Even when he was so sick he kept us smiling and laughing with him.

Jonah Vernon Ritterbush, 2/3/13-4/11/13

Not a day goes by that we don’t smile and think of Jonah. He brought us immeasurable joy and happiness and is greatly loved and missed.

Ariana Elizabeth Beaumier, 4/24/13-11/18/13

Leah Patience Beaumier, 3/10/15-3/15/15

Karina Milenova Kireva, 3/30/13-11/14/13, Complex I, III, IV

Ashley Lauren Hoppes, 2/13/92-3/22/12

Ashley loved all and enjoyed life as she knew it with her family. Although she couldn't attend school, her homeschooling was always fun for her. She was and is a gift from God.

Alex Schumacher, 4/7/03-10/4/14

Alex received his angel wings on Oct. 4, 2014 and battled MELAS for 11 years. We love and miss him so much.

Emily Kathryn Rivers, 2/18/1992-5/10/2014

We love you and miss you, sweet girl! We know that you are laughing and dancing in Heaven.
Love always, Mom, Dad, Kelly and John

Jaycob Alexander Harris, 1/31/12-6/30/13

Jaycob had mitochondrial complex 1 def. We miss and love you, monkey. Sending you lots of kisses.

Breylon MIchael Senn, 5/9/08-2/15/13

Our precious Mito warrior!

Jack Thomas Edwards, 7/8/08-9/7/12

In loving memory of my precious grandson, Jack Thomas Edwards! He was an amazing little fighter who taught all of us what unconditional love is all about! His amazing smile brightened everything!! I miss you, Jack, but it strengthens my heart knowing you are running and playing in heaven.

Claire Giles Crittenden, 3/25/03-4/25/08, Leigh's Disease

Our Precious Angel

Leela Row, 7/25/2013-8/7/2014, Leigh's Disease

In memory of our beautiful daughter, Leela Row. We miss you more than words can express. We thank God every day for every moment and every memory He gave us with you. Each day is one more day we've been without you here with us, but it is also one day closer to the day we will have you in our arms once again.XOXO

Mommy, Daddy, Meadow, and Dexter

1 Thessalonians 4:13-14

2 Samuel 12:23

Cooper Roy Watson, 6/4/10-5/29/11 & Isla Elizabeth Watson, 5/15/13-4/8/14

Siblings Cooper (11 months) and Isla (10 months) passed away from Leigh's disease. These were the happiest and most wonderful months of our lives and we miss our precious babies more than words can describe. Save us a spot in heaven, my sweet babies.

Krysta D'Nea White, 6/7/1998-1/16/2014

Krysta got to go and meet her Heavenly Father after a stay in the hospital for 3 months. We didn't know what was wrong. It was not until the autopsy that we found out that she had a Mito  Disease. Be sure to always love on your children and give them hugs. You never know when it will be the last time you get to do it.

Jane Windish, 4/24/03-4/11/11

All our love to Jane today and everyday.
Mom, Dad, Henry and Ella

Kain Gregory Buell, 8/9/2004-9/2/2014, Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Deficiency

Mommy's little bull forever and always. Miss you so much, my baby boy. 
Mom, Rachel, and Bailey

Archer Banjo Cleary, 9/6/12-4/26/13

Mannix Mags Agnew, 2/10/13-6/12/14 

We could never have imagined the love this little boy would bring into our lives and into the lives of so many others. Mannix was always willing to share the love and hugs with everyone. Making everyone feel so special. We miss him more than anything and hope him and his sister are together and know how much they are loved and missed.

Ellie Brooke Wilkinson, 3/5/07-1/25/11 

Our beautiful Ellie, a smile that was truly amazing. Forever loved and forever missed.

Lauren Francis, 3/23/06-6/16/14

We love and miss you, Goose!

Shayla Cecilia Strobhar, 7/29/02-5/17/14 

This disease took the life of a beautiful, smart, sweet, strong & stubborn 11-year-old this year ... We are forever grateful for those 11 precious years!  Shay-Shay taught us that one's "spirit" is defined by an unbelievable "will" to thrive & live because of the daily love, care, support & self-worth that you are surrounded by. Shayla lived that beautiful life because of her wonderful & caring parents and selfless big sister, Tyla. Spread those wings, sweet angel ... we know you are finally running, singing, talking and playing! I love you with all my heart. Joanie

Levi Jacob Kendall, 9/30/12-8/21/13

Wyatt Daniel DeStephano, 7/23/02-9/27/13 

Wyatt brought such light to our lives. His heart held such an immense amount of love and hope. Wyatt was our very own superhero, defying the odds since 2002. As he would say himself, "Anything is possible." We are so very proud of our dear boy and the legacy that he has left behind. 
We miss you as much as we love you ... and we couldn't love you any more.
xoxo - Mommy, Daddy, Maggie and Jilly 

Eric Thomas Clement, 11/28/2006-11/26/2012

Oliver Henry Fleming, 7/10/2009-1/12/2014

Raelynn Musacco, 9/16/06-10/15/08  

Diego F. Lumauig, 9/14/2006-8/14/2014

Diagnosed in early 2009 with MELAS, our little Diego fought the disease like a true warrior.  From his first stroke in 2009 through his pulmonary issues a few years later, and many other ailments, his inner strength never gave up.  “A warrior must only take care that his spirit is not broken.” Diego’s spirit never broke.  Our little warrior’s battle against MELAS ended on August 14, 2014 – one month shy of his 8th birthday. Diego’s torch will never be extinguished, our journey will continue.  One day the true cure for this disease will be available.  On that day, all our warriors will celebrate victory.  We love you, Diego!
You are the shining light. Love you always. Nurse Clare

Cooper Jackson Casavan, 7/16/07-10/12/13

In memory of our buddy, Coop the Dude - our favorite superhero.

Samuel Cutliff, Sept. 10, 2012, Leigh's Disease

The Lord blessed us with a special gift ... Samuel. He always had a smile on his face and captured all who met him with his beautiful blue eyes and curly blonde hair! He also had special needs. He passed away on September 10, 2012 from Leigh's Syndrome, a mitochondrial disease.  Samuel taught us and touched our lives more than any other person. He taught us to treasure each moment, to be content in all circumstances and to put our faith in God through it all. His smile was contagious, his laugh was like music to our ears, and his heart was pure. He loved his family and friends. He loved music, dancing, snuggles and kisses. He always wanted to be holding our hand and will forever hold our hearts. Our hearts will never be whole again with him gone, but we rejoice that he is now healed and whole. He is praising our Lord and running on the streets of gold. He is perfect. We praise the Lord for giving Samuel to us for almost 8 years and we will treasure each and every memory.  Until we see you again, sweet Samuel ... Daddy, Mommy, Gracie, Annaleigh and Micah ♥

Brody Tucker, 4/25/07-3/7/09

We miss you every day, Brody. I love you and hope you're running free in heaven's playground!

Hans-Joachim Kirsch, 1959-2014

My husband passed away this year on April 4 from complications of MELAS. We miss his smile and his love.

Katelyn Shumaker, 5/24/99-10/10/07 

Sophia Beatriz, 10/17/98-12/11/98 & Isabel Eryn, 1/21/01-3/29/01  

My two beautiful, perfect angels in heaven ...

Olivia McCormick, 8/24/2010-10/31/2013

Our precious angel lost her battle to mitochondrial disease on Oct. 31, 2013. She was a beautiful blessing from God that we will forever cherish and remember in our hearts each and every day. We love you always sweet girl rest in heavenly peace♡♥♡.

Arihanna K. Woodall, 6/21/11-12/8/13

Arihanna lost her battle to Pearson's syndrome on 12/8/13.

Kelci Shigeta, 12/7/08-8/31/13 

To my beloved daughter Kelci! She was only 4 years old and since she was 2 years old she fought for her life. Within the last year it was very difficult; she was on life support with a ventilator, home dialysis, oxygen, tons of meds, chest treatments, and 24/7 care. I was her primary caregiver and we were always in and out of the hospital months at a time with the longest being a 5-month period.   It's been 19 days since she has passed and it's getting harder to deal with rather than easier, but I know time heals the heart!  I miss you, Kelci girl, and you will forever be in my heart!  I LOVE YOU!

Kaidon Andrew Stamper, 10/24/03-04/24/13 -- Unspecified mitochondrial disease

Kaidon was the light of our Home. He couldn't say many words but he definitely could let you know when he wanted something. He loved life as long as he had his favorite toys & cartoons on. We miss him more & more each day. Love You to the Stars & back, Bubby. 

Mommy, Memaw Lisa & All

Christopher Joseph Caldwell, 11/6/01-12/20/07

Bryce Alexander Caldwell, 4/17/06-12/30/08

We will forever remember their strength and smiles. Not a day goes by that they are not missed. Their personalities will forever live on in the hearts of anyone whose lives were touched by them. We love you monkey and little monster!

Love Mommy and Daddy

Brandon Harris, 1/31/2003-6/8/2012

Our sweet precious Brandon smiled and gave so much love. He passed away on June 8th, 2012 from Leigh's Disease. We are so blessed to have had 9 plus years with him.  He taught us what life is really about.  We met friends that we would never crossed paths with if it wasn't for Brandon.  We miss him every day, but know he's an Angel in Heaven.   We love you, Baby "B."

Scott, 8/27/73-9/19/85 

I carry you in my heart forever. Love Mom xx

Leah Raquel Lucia, 2/17/11-6/6/13

Our little Princess Leah Raquel Lucia, she illuminated our lives and the world, and brought so much meaning to our lives. We'll never stop missing you, Leah-boo.

Bridget Lucille Nuccitelli, 7/18/07-9/15/07, suspected to have died from Leigh's Disease or similar mitochondrial/metabolic disease (still unidentified)

Dominic Angelo Nuccitelli, 4/16/01-9/14/01, suspected to have died from mitochondrial/metabolic disease (still unidentified, but possibly Leigh's disease or similar)

William Tuthill Dickerson, 5/8/91-4/12/94  

We went up to Noanet Peak this evening to watch the full moon rise. While up there we lit a candle to honor our dear William Tuthill Dickerson (May 8, 1991 - April 12, 1994) who has been our light and inspiration since he died 19 years ago.  Blessings to all our fellow Mito families.

Amanda and Burley Dickerson

Leslie Cora Whitt-Williams, 6/17/88-10/21/12 

Leslie had a very bubbly personality.  She loved volunteering and she loved her family.  Her daddy, sister and I miss her so very much.  We will see you again some day.

Sterling Curran Smith, 6/4/12-4/8/13, Alpers' Disease
My little hero, ten months was too short a time with you. We miss you every day and remember you always. Our love for you will never fade.

Kisses from Mama, Nana, Papa, Uncle Mac and Aunt Rhys

Taylor Renee Lawhead, 2/11/11-6/2/13, Antelope, CA
"Forever Our Lovebug, always remembered, never to be forgotten."

Isabella Carreiro, 8/23/02-7/28/10, Leigh's disease

British Columbia, Canada

Miss you always ...

Brady Waddick

This is in honor of my sweet nephew Brady Waddick, who was lost to MELAS syndrome in March 2013 at the tender age of 15. Brady had a contagious smile and a personality that would light up the room. He is sadly missed by all who knew him, especially his family. Our lives will never be the same without him, but he will never be forgotten. Good-speed Brady...wish I could tell you auntie loves you one more time, but I know you can still hear me and I know we will meet again someday. May your sweet angel soul rest in peaceful dreams.     

Sharon Perkins, 12/5/67-8/13/13, MELAS

Sharon was a free-spirited and tenacious woman who enjoyed the small, often overlooked, aspects of life. She was a loyal sister and daughter, and a friend to many. So many are scared to live, scared to approach a stranger, and scared to truly be themselves, but Sharon was never fearful, and always a fighter. She loved people and kept her loved ones dear to her. Compassionate, caring, and sensitive are just a few words of who Sharon was. She left a light of inspiration and taught us to appreciate life, no matter what adversity stands in our way. May you rest in peace and suffer no more.

Marti Hall, who died of mitochondrial disease in 2010, with Danny Boy

Frankie Gordie Kirkby, 4/19/12-5/14/13,  Mitochondrial Depletion Disease

Baby Beluga in the deep blue sea
Swim so wild & he swim so free
Heaven above, sea below & a
little white whale on the go
remember Grama used to bounce you
when she said BOOP BOOP & you would
I miss you so very much and love you
forever and always my little

We love you, Frankie! Mommy and Daddy

To our sweet nephew who we know is always looking down and out for us – we miss you like crazy, not a day goes by where we don’t think about you.Today we light a light for you but it’s you who has lit up our lives and shown us how beautiful life is – never again will we take anything for granted.We love you baby boy - If we had a single flower for every time we think about you, we could walk forever in your garden.

 To our beautiful sister and brother – you have shown us what strength means and we will always look up to you for your courage, patience, love, and honor.We hope to one day be as great as parents as you are – it’s been a journey we never thought we would be on, but growth in love comes from a place of absence,where the imagination is left to its own devices and creates you to be much more than reality would ever allow.“When you love someone - you'll do anything”

 We love you guys – Auntie Margaret & Uncle Shawn

Frankie, you have touched my heart & soul forever and always.  You taught so many life lessons to everyone in such a short time and always brought out the good in people. You made everyone so happy and as you know you were blessed to have the BEST mommy and daddy in the whole universe.


William Chandler Brown, 1990-2012 -- MELAS 

Isaac Farooq Malik, 9/27/08-1/24/10 -- Leigh's Disease

Deeply loved and missed xxx

Jacob Wright, 12/6/10-4/20/12 -- Leigh's Disease

The 501 days we had you on this earth were the best of our lives. We love and miss you angel and promise to never give up the fight. Butterfly kisses baby bear mummy and daddy xxxx

In loving memory of Owen Stump, 8/12/06-5/26/10

Owen was our little fighter. Part of him still lives on through his little brother, Levi, who also suffers from Alpers Disease.

We Love You, Angel,

Daddy, Mommy & Levi

In Memory of Julian R. Fonville, 10/30/09-02/07/12

Caroline Pereira Duraes, 5/16/01-9/4/11, Kearns Sayre Syndrome (KSS)

 Caroline was a brave and happy little girl who liked to laugh and made others laugh. She had a positive impact on all who knew her. Even though severely ill for many years she never complained. She was often surrounded by her books and enjoyed time spent looking through them. But most of all she loved coloring, sometimes for hours at a time; her favorite colors were purple, pink and yellow. We miss her so much and are thinking about her every day!

Love Candido (dad), Anita (mom), and Gabriel (brother) 

Jack Thomas Edwards: At 4 years old, Jack lost his battle to Mito on 09/07/12

I love and miss him desperately! 

In memory of Samantha Schichtel, 7/18/06-7/25/10  
Miss you so very much Samma-roo.

In memory of Kayla Marie Dawn O'Flynn ~ July 22, 1990 - July 14, 2005

It has been seven years since our SweetGirl left this earth but she has not left our hearts ... not a day goes by that we don't think of you, Kay~Marie!  We miss you dearly ... loves from Suzette (your mommy), Kevin (your daddy) and Brandi (your little sister) xoxox

George Charles Garman, 09/09/09-01/29/10
We miss you our little Mito monkey!
The Garman Family

Jonathan Ruby
We miss you so much!
Love Mom, Ethan, Dylan and Kelly.

Brady Hackbarth, 04/29/05-09/01/11

In memory of our sweet angel, Brady. Missed so much by so many. So brave and a smile to melt your heart always!

In memory of James "Bubba" Charles Ament, 12/13/95-8/21/10  

As we light candles for those who have lost their battle with Mito, let us say a prayer for those who still battle this disease.

Robin Bartel

Lauren Benney, 10/1/02-3/20/12
Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Complex Deficiancy (PDCD)
We miss you, Lauren, so much.  Love Mummy, Daddy, Matt, Em and Will xxxx

Chance Nathaniel Spurlock, 2/23/07-11/28/07
We love you and miss you so much, sweet baby. It breaks my heart you had to leave us but I am so thankful that you are free from this disease and all the pain it caused you! <3

Kristen Charleston, 1/1/93-8/29/11, MELAS 

Jacob Nicholas Wright, 12/06/10-04/20/12, Leigh's Disease

Miss you, baby bear. x

For Samuel Cutliff, Son of Tim and Mary Cutliff,  Anderson, SC
 2004 - 2012

Noah C.K. Kaawaloa
Born: Dec. 16, 2004
Got his wings: June 11, 2007
Undiagnosed Mito Angel
 Your memory lives on, my son, in our hearts forever.  Until we meet again, soar high,  my love.

Marvin, 03/30/99-09/05-05, M. Alpers POLG1

Emma Frances Dalton,  9/22/10 - 4/17/11
Leigh's Disease
Emma, In your short amount of time here, you touched so many people's lives, and brought so much joy and happiness to everyone around you.  Our lives will never be the same not having you here with us.  We are only happy in the fact that you are no longer suffering, but that doesn't help our pain in not seeing you grow up. There are no words to describe how much we miss you, and how much our hearts ache. You are truly an angel, and it breaks our heart that we lost you to this disease.  You will always be our little ladybug. 
To the Moon and Back, Baby Girl.
Love, Mommy and Daddy 


Mamie Rose is still smiling.

Audrey Elizabeth Lawrence, 8/10/01-5/12/08

Ryan Mason Donnelly, 9/10/06 - 5/1/08
Our little noodle, you are missed more then words could say. We think of you
everyday. You would have turned 5 years old last week. We hope you celebrated
in heaven and are taking good care of your little brother until we see you again. I am
so thankful you chose me to be your mommy.

We love you! Mommy, Daddy, Colin, Shane, Taylor and Trevor

"There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness,
but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues.
They are the messengers of overwhelming grief.......and unspeakable love. ~Washington Irving

Chase Ryan Donnelly, 1/1/09 - 7/6/10
My sweet face. God, I miss you. We all do. We think of you everyday. Your Trevor (Chase's twin) speaks of you often. As do Shane and Taylor. I thank you for choosing me to be your mommy. You changed my life in many ways and taught us so much. You showed them didn't you!!!! You were a fighter! I hope you and your big brother are the best of friends and I can't wait until I see you both again!

Love Mommy, Daddy, Colin, Shane, Taylor and Trevor

"Remember to keep playing after EVERY storm."~ Mattie J.T. Stepanek

Maggie Agnew, 6/18/08-2/26/11
Maggie had complexes I, III, IV and V. She suffered from the day she was born. Maggie will be forever missed and loved!!
Having her a part of our family has changed our lives forever! She taught us about what love really is and how we should never take any part of life for granted. She had an impact on everyone she met!! Maggie is our beautiful Angel!!

Andrew Whalen, 10/5/76 - 6/22/03
Lost his battle to MELAS.  Throughout everything Andrew had been through, he maintained his sense of humor and tried to see the lighter side of it all.  I miss my brother more than words could describe. He truly was my hero.

 Alicia J. Hobley, 4/8/08 - 6/3/10 

For our daughter Alicia J. Hobley who left her exhausted body on  June 3, 2010 from Leigh's syndrome to go play in heaven. We miss you Little Red Bean.

Declan Arthur Gardner, 8/30/11-9/2/11
Passed away from Mitochondrial Disease
Our sweet baby boy Declan, Mommy's arms ache to hold you, Daddy's
heart will never heal.  But, how lucky we were to kiss and hug you if
only for a little while.
Your beautiful face we will always remember, your little fingers and toes.
Now you're an angel in heaven even more beautiful than I can imagine.
Our sweet baby Declan, we will miss you every day. Please watch over
us and remember we will be together again someday.
Love, Mommy, Daddy, Tyler and Sadie



Heather Grace Coleman, 9/25/02 - 9/16/05

 A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared and he sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to force its body through that little hole. Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it had gotten as far as it could and it could go no further. So the man decided to help the butterfly by taking a pair of scissors and snipping off the remaining bit of the cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily, but it had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings. The man continued to watch the butterfly because he expected that, at any moment, the wings would enlarge and expand to be able to support the body, which would contract in time. Neither happened! In fact, the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never was able to fly.

What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand was that the restricting cocoon and the struggle required for the butterfly to get through the tiny opening were God's way of forcing fluid from the body of the butterfly into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it achieved its freedom from the cocoon. Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our life. If God allowed us to go through our life without any obstacles, it would cripple us. We would not be as strong as we could have been. We could never fly. ~Author unknown

We are rejoicing as we weep; our beautiful butterfly is no longer bound by the confines of her Mito cocoon.  With love from Mommy, Daddy, Katie, Nick, and countless others who were able to look past the cocoon of tubes and wires, and caught glimpses of her beautiful, colorful wings.

 Connor Scott Millard, 3/1/99-9/18/07

Connor, you are dearly loved and always remembered.  We hold you so close to our hearts.  Your spunky spirit will always be a part of us as we work to help other children and families.  Thank you so much for all you have taught us and how you have changed our hearts and our lives in so many ways.  With so much love and tears, until we hug and kiss again,

Mama, Papa, Caseygirl and your new baby brother Micah James

 Madeline "Kate" Stephens, 4/17/01~7/13/08

Passed away from MELAS and missed more than words could ever describe.


My daughter, Randi, lost her very brave lifelong battle with
mitochondrial disease on July 25, 2010.  One word described Randi,
UNIQUE!  She was innocent, caring, loving, and encouraged each of us
to live a simpler life with a child's perspective.  Randi rarely
complained, although she suffered daily with severe pain.  Randi is my
inspiration to continue raising awareness of and making strides for
mitochondrial diseases.

Thank you for remembering my sweet angel, Randi!

Catherine LaFond-Evans

Leo Donald Fortunato, 4/5/07-4/22/08

Leo Donald Fortunato was born on a snowy April 5, 2007, in
Fredericton, New Brunswick.  Leo struggled for a year with
mitochondrial diseased before dying on Earth Day, April 22, 2008.  His
big sister Emma misses giving Leo a bath and singing songs to him.

The families of Kirland Kilbride, Owen Eaves, Alexis Roung and Tucker
Patterson also know the incredible loss of a child to mitochondrial
disease.  Please light a candle in honor of all children who have lost
their lives to Mito.
With love and compassion,
Sarah, Mario and Emma Fortunato

Abigail "Abby" Renee Kasuba, 4/16/00-3/10/09


Passed away from MELAS

Maud Mary Adams Fullerton, 01/22/16-09/24/05

With two succeeding generations of a Mitochondrial Disease diagnosis, there can be no doubt about your diagnosis too.  You lived until almost 90 years old, but your last 15 years were in a hospital and many years before that were in home care.

Rest easy, Mum … you have a flock of Mito angels to keep your watchful eyes upon with your endless patience and understanding smile.  I am sure they are OK!

I love you.  Jean



Madison Grantham, 7/29/04-8/3/06

Madison had Alpers Syndrome



Patricia Mary Smith (nee Hunter), 7/25/29-12/14/80 


So silently she suffered, 
   So beautiful she was.
We'll always miss you Mom!
 Janice, Bruce, Grant & Kevin 

Kayla Marie Dawn O'Flynn, 7/22/90-7/14/05 

This is shared in memory of my SweetGirl, Kayla Marie Dawn O'Flynn.  Passed away from Mitochondrial Myopathy, Complexes I & IV, Lactic Acidosis and Sideroblastic Anemia...we love you whole world and miss you every day.  HUGS from your mommy, daddy and l'il sister.

Heather Grace Coleman 9/25/02-9/16/05
heather coleman

It has been five years since Heather left her tired, broken body behind and flew to Heaven to be in Jesus' arms.  

You can light a virtual candle in Heather's memory at:
Heavens_Playground Shrine At 

Heather's birthday and Angel Day fall during Mitochondrial Disease Awareness Week, a time to learn about the disease that took her from us far too soon.  Please visit for more information, and consider making a donation in Heather's memory.
We love you, sweet Petunia, we will see you in Heaven, love Mommy,Daddy, (Heidi and Paul Coleman), Nicholas, and Kaitlin


Jackson Thomas Feliciano

Jackson Feliciano

My son, Jackson Thomas Feliciano, died October 5, 2007 from a serious Mitochondrial Disease known as Alpers Syndrome.  It is one of the most catastrophic Mitochondrial Diseases.  He was 18 months old at the onset of his disease and 2 years old when he died. 


Kirkland Kilbride  3/6/01-12/2/07 

visit our event website:

Kirkland's webpage:





George Garman


When You Ask

When you ask about her
Leave your fears at the door

Your questions open each window
Watch the sunlight stream in

I see her infectious grin
The soft hand inside mine

Come, sit, let me tell you
These times are too rare

When you ask about her
You give me permission

And I need this sunshine
Like daily bread

I can warm these rooms
With the life-giving memories

When you ask about her
You bring the flowers that never die.

by Alice J. Wisler