Memorial website in the memory of your loved one

This memorial website was created in the loving memory of our miracle baby, Jacob Christian Snelling.  He will remain in our hearts forever. 

Our family was blessed with Jacob on June 2, 2004.  He went home to receive his angel wings on Thursday, February 8th, 2007 at 11:26pm.

He passed away while resting in his mommy's arms.  His daddy, big brother Wesley, MawMaw and PawPaw Harper, Brother Angles, Dr. Makris, Nurse Cindy, Dr. Tofil and Chaplain Gordon were also there to say "goodbye" to our precious angel. 


Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
Matthew 19:14 


If we could have a lifetime with
A dream that would come true,
We'd pray to God with all our hearts
For yesterday and You.

A thousand words can't bring you back
We know because we've tried....
Neither will a thousand tears
We know because we've cried....

You left behind our broken hearts
And happy memories too....
But we never wanted memories
We only wanted You.

We thought of you with love today,
But that is nothing new.
We thought about you yesterday
And days before that too.

We think of you in silence
We often speak your name.
All we have now are memories
And a picture in a frame.

Your memory is our keepsake
With which we'll never part.
God holds you in His arms
We hold you in our hearts.


You'll Always Be My Baby Brother

Somewhere in my dreams tonight
I'll see you standing there
You look at me with a smile
"Life isn't always fair"

You say you were chosen for his garden
His preciously hand picked bouquet
"God really needed me,
That's why I couldn't stay"

It's said to be that angels
Are sent from above
I've always had my angel
My baby brother - whose heart was filled with love

Wherever the ocean meets the sky
There will be memories of you and I
When I look up at that sky so blue
All I see are visions of you

"While there's a heart in me, you'll be a part of me."
~Author Unknown~


Today, Sunday September 20, 2009, on the way home from church my son, Austin who is 10 years old informed me of an award he won this past week at school in his 4-H Club at school.  He had to write a poem and he decided to write a poem about his baby brother Jacob.  He won first place. I am so proud of Austin.  He, like the rest of us continues to keep Jacob's memory alive in his own little way.  I have never seen a child so young show the maturity and understanding that he shows.  He continues to amaze me every day.  This is his poem in memory of his baby brother:

One year I had a brother.
The next year he was still there.
But the third year he was gone.
But I knew he was still there,
He just left his body but he didn’t leave me.
He is always in my heart and in my dreams.
He is always there for me even in tough times.
He brings me courage all the time,
You just can’t see him but I know I can.
I see him all the time because he stays in my heart.
He never leaves my heart it’s where he stays
Because he’s always there for me and I’m always there for him.


October 2010. Austin wrote another poem about his baby brother for his 4-H club at school. Even though he received a "Participant" ribbon this time his poem is "First Place" in my eyes. I hope it touches your heart at it has mine.

I had a little brother that lived just fine,

Then two years later he had to say "Goodbye".

But I know he's fine,

and he's going to dine,

In the Golden Streets of Heaven."

He'll meet Jesus and the Good Lord,

I may see him when I'm one hundred and four,

and I know he'll be waiting on me,

in the Golden streets of Heaven.

He'll have lots of friends, including me,

He'll have honey from a golden bee.

But I always know he'll be waiting for me,

in the Golden Streets of Heaven.


"Thinking of You With Love"

We thought of you with love today,
But that is nothing new.
We thought about you yesterday,
And days before that too.
We think of you in silence,
We often speak your name.
All we have are memories,
And your picture in a frame.
Your memory is our keepsake,
With which we will never part.
God has you in His keeping,
We have you in our hearts.
A million times we’ve wanted you,
A million times we cried.
If love could only have saved you,
You never would have died.
It broke our hearts to lose you,
But you didn’t go alone.
For a part of us went with you,
The day God called you home.

~Author Unknown~


"A Parents Heartache"

A grieving parent is someone who will never forget there child no matter how painful memories are.

A grieving parent is someone who yearns to be with there child but cannot conceive leaving their living ones.

A grieving parent is someone who has part of a heart as the rest has gone with their child.

A grieving parent is someone who begs for relief from the memories which plague them and then feels guilty when they get it.

A grieving parent is someone who pretends to be happy and enjoying life when they are really dying inside.

A grieving parent is someone who can cry or laugh at the drop of a hat whenever they remember their beloved child.

A grieving parent is someone who feels as if they have just lost their child yesterday no matter how much time has passed.

A grieving parent is someone who fears for their remaining family because they cannot bear to have any more losses.

A grieving parent is someone who sits by their child's memorial and feels a knife stabbing their heart.

A grieving parent is someone who wants to help others who have lost a loved one because somehow others loss is theirs all over again"









A Kiss To You On Mother's Day




A kiss to you on Mother's day,
a hug from me to you.
I know that you are sad sometimes,
I know that you are blue.

Please wipe away that tear,
and put on a happy face.
For I'm with God in Heaven now,
and oh, Mommy, what a wonderful place!

God gave me wings so I could fly,
they are white with a hint of blue.
I'm a big boy Mommy, with these wings of mine
they carry me down to visit you.

God is teaching me how to catch your prayers,
prayers that come as wishes.
Your wish is the same everyday,
a wish that I could have stayed.

I have a prayer for you now Mommy,
I pray that you will hear.
God needed me here with him,
I have no pain or fear.

For I am an Angel now you see,
I watch over you each night and day.
A little piece of Heaven on earth,
guiding you on your way.

I come to tuck you in each night,
as you wanted to do with me.
I hear your prayers and kiss your cheek,
and then I watch you dream.

Before I leave you and go back home,
I look at you and sigh.
And as I fly back to Heaven
I sing you a lullabye.

A kiss to you on Mother's Day,
a hug from me to you.
I love you Mommy, please don't cry,
you'll get to hold me soon.


If we could have a lifetime with
A dream that would come true,
We'd pray to God with all our hearts
For yesterday and You.

A thousand words can't bring you back
We know because we've tried....
Neither will a thousand tears
We know because we've cried....

You left behind our broken hearts
And happy memories too....
But we never wanted memories
We only wanted You.

We thought of you with love today,
But that is nothing new.
We thought about you yesterday
And days before that too.

We think of you in silence
We often speak your name.
All we have now are memories
And a picture in a frame.

Your memory is our keepsake
With which we'll never part.
God holds you in His arms
We hold you in our hearts.

And God said…..

I said, “God, I hurt.”
And God said, “I know”

I said, “God, I cry a lot.”
And God said, “That is why I gave you tears.”

I said, “God, I am so depressed.”
And God said, “That is why I gave you sunshine.”

I said, “God, life is so hard.”
And God said, “That is why I gave loved ones.”

I said, “God, my loved one died.”
And God said, “So did mine.”

I said, “God, it is such a loss.”
And God said, “I saw my son nailed to a cross.”

I said, “God, but your loved one lives.”
And God said, “So does yours.”

I said, “God, where are they now?”
And God said, “Mine is on My right and yours is in the Light.”

I said, “God, it hurts.”
And God said, “I know.”




We Are Angel Mommys

We have shared our tears and our sorrows,
We have given encouragement to each other,
Given hope for a brighter tomorrow,
We share the title of grieving mother.

Some of us lost older daughters or sons,
Who we watched grow over the years,
Some have lost their babies before their lives began.
But no matter the age, we cry the same tears.

We understand each others pain,
The bond we share is very strong.
With each other there is no need to explain.
The path we walk is hard and long.

Our children brought us together.
They didn’t want us on this journey alone.
They knew we needed each other,
To survive the pain of them being gone.

So take my hand my friend,
We may stumble and fall along the way.
But we’ll get up and try again,
Because together we can make it day by day.

We can give each other hope.
We’ll create a place where we belong.
Together we will find ways to cope,
Because we are Angel Moms and together we are strong


Daddy please don’t look so sad
Mommy please don’t cry
I am in the arms of Jesus
And he sings me lullabies

Please don’t try to question God
Don’t think He is unkind
Don’t think He sent me to you and then changed His mind

You see I am special and I’m needed up above
I’m the special child you gave Him, the product of your love
I’ll always be there with you, so watch the sky at night
Find the brightest star that’s gleaming that’s my halos brilliant light

So Daddy please don’t look so sad
Mommy please don’t cry
I am in the arms of Jesus
And he sings me lullabies

Jacob's Gift of Sight

This is the precious little angel, McKinley who received one of Jacob's corneas when he was six months old in February 2007.  I thank his mom, Bridget for being so kind in contacting me to allow my family to know her son received Jacob's cornea.  Many organ receipients do not contact the donor families for many different reasons.  I remember the day I received Bridget's letter I cried and cried as I read it.  She wept with tears of joy that her baby boy had received a cornea transplant and would now be able to see but she also wept with sorrow for the loss of our precious son. It really warms my heart to know that this precious little boy can now see and Jacob blessed another life, the life of a child who, like him, was born a "special needs" child. McKinley wears special glasses and has to have drops in his eyes daily, but we pray that his eye sight will continue to get stronger and stronger every day.  Please keep him in your prayers.  His mom and I keep in contact and as she has told me, we will forever have a special bond.  I am praying that I will one day get to meet Bridget, McKinley and the rest of her family.   





Our Precious Angel

Don't grieve for me,
for now I'm free.
I'm following the path
God has laid, You see.

I took His hand
when I heard His call.
I turned my back
and left it all.

I could not stay
another day.
To laugh, to love,
to talk or play.

Perhaps my time
seemed all too brief,
Don't lengthen it now
with undue grief.

Lift up your hearts
and peace to thee.
God wanted me now;
He set me free.

Death of a Child
by Sandy Eakle

Sorry I didn't get to stay.
To laugh and run and play.
To be there by your side.
I'm sorry that I had to die.

God sent me down to be with you,
to make your loving heart anew.
To help you look up and see
Both God and little me.

Mommy, I wish I could stay.
Just like I heard you pray.
But, all the angels did cry
when they told little me goodbye.

God didn't take me cause He's mad.
He didn't send me to make you sad.
But to give us both a chance to be
a love so precious .. don't you see?

Up here no trouble do I see
and the pretty angels sing to me.
The streets of gold is where I play
you'll come here too, mommy, someday.

Until the day you join me here,
I'll love you mommy, dear.
Each breeze you feel and see,
brings love and a kiss from me.

The Loss Of A Child

The moment that I knew you had died,
My heart split in two,
The one side filled with memories,
The other died with you.

I often lay awake at night,
When the world is fast asleep,
And take a walk down memory lane,
With tears upon my cheek.

Remembering you is easy,
I do it every day,
But missing you is a heartache,
That never goes away.

I hold you tightly within my heart,
And there you will remain,
Life has gone on without you,
But it never will be the same.

For those who still have their children,
Treat them with tender care,
You will never know the emptiness,
As when you turn and they are not there.

Don't tell me that you understand,
don't tell me that you know.
Don't tell me that I will survive,
How I will surely grow.

Don't tell me this is just a test,
That I am truly blessed.
That I am chosen for the task,
Apart from all the rest.

Don't come at me with answers
That can only come from me,
Don't tell me how my grief will pass,
That I will soon be free.

Don't stand in pious judgment
Of the bonds I must untie,
Don't tell me how to grieve,
Don't tell me when to cry.

Accept me in my ups and downs,
I need someone to share,
Just hold my hand and let me cry,
And say, "My friend, I care 


I have always had an interest in nursing and now I know why....God was preparing me for Jacob.

Seventeen weeks into my pregnancy the doctors discovered that I had PROM (Premature Rupture Of Membrane) and was diagnosed with Oligohydramnios (no amniotic fluid). An ultrasound revealed that Jacob did not have kidneys. I was told by doctors that without amniotic fluid the baby's lungs would not develop and he would never survive. Specialists at Kirklin Clinic told me that I needed to consider terminating the pregnancy. I turned it all over to God.

After spending two and a half months in the hospital on bedrest, Jacob was brought into the world by C-Section six weeks early. He was born with pulmonary hypoplasia and bilateral renal agenesis (no kidneys). Jacob is a miracle because babies born with this diagnosis DO NOT SURVIVE. He stayed in NICU for 100 days and was moved to the Special Care Unit on September 10, 2004. He was discharged on September 30, 2004 two days short of being four months old.

He spent twelve days at home before being admitted to Children's on 10/12/04 due to vomiting.

10/24/04 - we had Jacob's Homecoming at church and later that evening he was admitted for respiratory distress and vomiting. 

10/28/04 - reflux surgery 

01/11/05 - rcvd. new central line (for hemodialysis) and received 2nd peritoneal dialysis catheter. 

02/07/05 - admitted for pneumonia. 

05/03/05 - admitted for respiratory distress. 

05/19/05 - 3rd PD catheter was placed and his lungs were scoped due to respiratory distress. 

06/04/05 - admitted for dehydration. 

06/11/05 - admitted after his hemodialysis line quit working. We started using his peritoneal dialysis line one week earlier than expected. 

08/06/05 - admitted for dehydration, vomiting and fever. 

08/14/05 - admitted for diarrhea and fever. 

08/22/05 -admitted for respiratory distress. 

09/27/05 - scheduled to receive trach but went into cardiopulmonary arrest in the OR due to a bad infection. We were told he was not going to live. He had a fever of 106. 

10/04/05 - He received a tracheostomy. 

10/11/05 - He coded when given a paralytic drug to receive an arterial line.
10/18/05 - received a permanent central line. 

11/08/05 -Reconstructive surgery on trach. 

2/20/06 - Jacob goes home after spending 6 months in the hospital. 

2/27/06 - Admitted for respiratory distress, high potassium and problems with dialysis clearance. 

3/28/06 Admitted for R.S.V. and respiratory distress. 

4/6/06 - admitted for respiratory distress. 

6/16/06 - admitted for high fever, low blood pressure and sepsis. 

10/3/06 - Transported by AirMed to Lucille Packard Children's Hospital in Palo Alto, CA for transplant evaluation. 

12/06/06 - Admitted for Peritonitis.

2/03/07 - Suffered hemorrahagic stroke and major brain damage. 

02/08/07 - Jacob went home to be with the Lord while resting in his mommy's arms.  

Jacob hated to wear clothes and I felt it only appropriate to dress him the way he would have wanted it.  I dressed him in his usual attire; socks, t-shirt and a diaper.  Anytime you saw Jacob he always had  "froggie" his favorite teething toy, glow worm and his satin paci holder that he used to throw over his head when he was ready to go "nite-nite".  


                Jacob's Birthday Balloon Journey

I have a very special story to share with you. On November 19th, I received the email below.

Message from Visitor to Jacob Snelling Memorial Website

Name: Mike Smith
Content: Jacob Christian Snelling

Good Evening,

I was hunting today and found a tattered balloon with a blue ribbon tied with the broken message "memory of Jacob". Searching for the sender of the balloon, we were brought to this site. The message within said that the family of Jacob let 3 balloons go in his memory, one being yellow. I have a wife and two children myself; the story of Jacob was amazing and brought tears to mine and my wife’s eyes. We would like to contact Jacob's family and let them know that we believe we found one of the balloons set free in his memory; to let them know
that the story of Jacob touched our hearts. We live in Holmen, WI.

My name is Mike, my wife; Amy, daughter; Hannah (7) and son; Gaven (5). 

Trovia, please let the family of Jacob know that we would enjoy talking with them or emailing they will be in our thoughts and prayers.

Mike Smith

Mike had no idea when he sent me the email that I was Jacob’s mom. I sent the following email back to Mike:

Hey Mike,

I am Trovia Snelling, Jacob's mommy. I was so touched to read your email this morning. It is so amazing how God works to bring people together. The balloon that you found was released in his memory by another mom who wanted to do something special for families that she had met on the Memory-of website. Her little girls website is

If you look under Jacob's lit candles on October 16, 2007, you will see where Lori asked Jacob if he received his balloon. The balloons were released on October 15, 2007 in honor of all these little angels, Jacob being one of them. I have never met Lori but she has fallen in love with Jacob through his memorial. She is such a sweet person. Jacob has touched so many lives and he is still touching lives.

I cannot tell you "thank you" enough for taking the time to research the existence of the balloon. I can only imagine how you felt when you found the balloon. I sat here with tears streaming down my face as I read your email. God is amazing. Please visit Jacob's website often as I do add new poems, pictures and I write to him as well. I am so thankful that Jacob touched your life. Thank you for making my Thanksgiving holiday even more special. This will be my first Thanksgiving and Christmas to spend without my precious angel. It is people like you who make a difference because you cared enough to send me a message.

May your family have a blessed Thanksgiving.


Mike responded:

Who would have thought that a day spent in the woods, would have created such a memory for our family. One we will never forget. I never gave a second thought when I picked it up, that I would try and find the origin.

We are deeply saddened by your loss. You will be in our prayers often during the Holiday season.

You are more than welcome to the balloon if you would like.

Mike Smith
Hydrite Chemical CO. - LaCrosse, WI
Branch Buyer

************************************************************************ From:
Trovia <>
Date: 11/19/2007 03:30 PM
Subject: Re: Message from Visitor to Jacob Snelling Memorial Website

How sweet of you to offer the balloon. I am once again crying! I have cried all day it seems. My mom called me this morning to tell me that she received a phone call from a pastor of a church who wants to build the store for the was within minutes of me opening your email about Jacob's balloon. Isn't it amazing how God works!

I would love to have the balloon if you do not wish to keep it, but if you do I would be just as honored. I am so touched by Lori releasing the balloon in Jacob's honor and so very touched by you making the effort to find me. Thank you so much! You will never know how much this means to me. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

I contacted Lori who had released the balloon in Jacob’s honor because I was so excited that someone found it. What I did not realize at that time was Lori released blue balloons for the boy angels and pink balloons for the girl angels. I had overlooked the part in Mike’s email about the balloon being yellow.

When I opened Mike’s package last Saturday morning, tears streamed down my face as I took the tattered balloon out of the package. It was yellow with a baby blue ribbon attached to it. It was so tattered but the words “Memory of Jacob” was still legible…………… was my handwriting. I cannot tell you the rush of emotions that overcame me as I stood there holding Jacob’s birthday balloon that was found the week of Thanksgiving by a total stranger walking in the woods in Wisconsin.

God knows the pain and heartache I feel especially with this being my first holiday season without Jacob. It is amazing how He chose to let me know that Jacob is watching over me and that even though he is not with me in body that he is with me always in spirit.

Christmas is a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. We read “holiday” stories (some being true and some fictional) that really tug at our heart strings this time of year. I am so grateful to be able to share my special “holiday” story with you. It is so amazing that even after Jacob’s death his journey is still touching lives allover the world.

Thank you for taking the time to read my story. I hope that you receive a blessing from it. May your family have a very Merry Christmas.

Love in Christ,

Whatever your cross,
Whatever your pain,
There will always be sunshine,
After the rain ....

Perhaps you may stumble,
Perhaps even fall,
But God's always ready,
To answer your call ...

He knows every heartache,
Sees every tear,
A word from His lips,
Can calm every fear ...

Your sorrows may linger,
Throughout the night,
But suddenly vanish,
Dawn's' early light ...

The Savior is waiting,
Somewhere above,
To give you His grace,
And send you His love ..

Whatever your cross,
Whatever your pain,
'God always sends rainbows ....
After the rain ... ' 

When God Calls Little Children

When God calls little children to dwell with Him above,
We mortals sometimes question the wisdom of His love.

For no heartache compares with the death of one small child
Who does so much to make our world seem wonderful and mild.

Perhaps God tires of calling the aged to His fold
So He picks a little rosebud before it can grow old.

God knows how much we need them, so He takes but a few
To make the land of heaven more beautiful to view.

Believing this is difficult, still, somehow we must try,
The saddest word mankind knows will always be "goodbye."

So when a little child departs, we who are left behind
Must realize God loves children... Angels are hard to find 

Jacob is now running and playing with his friends who also earned their wings:  Justin Smedley, Joshua Evans, Dylan Kissic, Sonet, Remi Goodall, Austin Anthony, Jackson Reid, Landon Boothe, Shaun Whitaker, Emalee Rain, Kinsey & Kylee Sullivan, Kevin McTaggart, Jackson Thomas & Lillie Clark.



I would like to say "Thank You" to Dr. Hancock, my OBGYN who believed in me and gave it her all. She was just as determined as I was to deliver a healthy baby. She made me feel at home the time that I stayed in the hospital by bringing me homemade goodies and stopping by to just chat. Thank you, Dr. Hancock, for being such a wonderful doctor and friend. 

Dr. Oliver (Neonatologist) - God blessed us with his presence the day Jacob was born. He prayed and prayed over Jacob as he worked to keep him alive. Thank you, Dr. Oliver for not giving up on Jacob and for being who you are. You were there when Jacob came into this world and your sermon at Jacob’s funeral will forever remain in our hearts. You have touched so many lives and changed many hearts. We love you. 

Dr. Dimmitt (Neonatologist) - was on call the day Jacob was born. He spent the next two months working with Jacob and doing all he could possibly do to keep our baby alive. Thank you, Dr. Dimmitt for being such a wonderful doctor; for offering to give Jacob your kidney in hopes of him living a more normal life, and for putting your whole heart into what you do. We’ve shed many tears together over Jacob and I know we will shed many more. You are a very special person and will always have a special place in our hearts. 

Dr. Makris (Pulmonologist) - worked so hard to keep Jacob’s lungs healthy. The evening we were to take Jacob off the vent, Dr. Makris came to see us before leaving work. He asked if there was anything he could do for us and I told him to just pray. He stood there for a few more minutes and asked once again. I thought for a minute, I smiled and I said, “yes you can, I would be honored if you could be with us tonight and carry Jacob to the operating room when he passes.” I told him that I had never seen him in scrubs and I would like for him to wear scrubs as well. He just smiled and told me he would see us in a little while. Even though he had worked that day, he returned that night dressed in scrubs and witnessed our precious angel leave this world. Thank you, Dr. Makris for being a wonderful, loving doctor and for honoring my wishes. You hold a very special place in our hearts. 

Dr. Katz (Nephrologist) – You believed in me, worked with me and allowed me to make decisions regarding Jacob’s care rather than just writing the orders. I enjoyed seeing your face light up when Jacob smiled at you. You will always have a special place in our hearts. Thank you for your dedication, devotion, for being who you are and for allowing me the opportunity to work with you in taking care of my angel. 

Dr. Benfield (Nephrologist) – worked so hard in trying to find a fix for Jacob. Jacob was a challenge and I am proud that he had Dr. Benfield as his nephrologist. Dr. Benfield spent many hours in research in hopes of getting Jacob to transplant. Dr. Benfield, as a parent of a sick child has been on both sides of the table and can understand the stress and heartache we went through and can sympathize with our pain. Thank you Dr. Benfield for all your hard work and devotion to our family.  You hold a special place in our hearts.

Dr. Askenazi & Dr. Tinney (Nephrologist) - Thank you for your hard work and dedication in taking care of Jacob.  You joined the nephrology team later in Jacob's life but I'm glad that you got to know Jacob before he passed away.  I know that you too learned alot from taking care of him and I hope that you received a blessing as well. 

Dr. Tofil (PICU doctor) - I was so touched by your love and compassion for your patients and their families. You put your whole heart into the care of our son. Being a mom yourself, you felt our pain. Thank you, Dr. Tofil for loving Jacob and for being there for my family the last week of Jacob’s life. The image of tears streaming down your face as we told you we were ready to let him go will forever be etched on my heart.  We love you.

Thank you to all of the nurses in the NICU, the Dialysis Center, Chaplain Brent, Chaplain Paul, Chaplain Gordon, 7NW, Special Care, 5 Tower and the PICU. There are so many that I can’t even begin to name people. “Thank You” to everyone involved in Jacob’s care. We had the honor of spending a lot of time with you guys and each of you became like family to us.

“Thank you” to each and every person at Children's Hospital and Shelby Baptist that took care of our special angel. You will always have a special place in our hearts.

Thank you, Dr. Salvatierra for offering to give Jacob a second chance at life. You putting Jacob on the transplant list at Lucille Packard Children's Hospital in California was an answer to our prayers. When it seemed all hope was gone, God lead me to you. I will always have a special place in my heart for you and your transplant coordinator, Cathy Costaglio. You could not ask for a woman with a bigger love for the kids. We love ya'll. 

A very special "Thank You" goes to my parents for always being there for me when I need them. I could not have made it through the past three years without their love and support. They were Jacob's world as much as Jacob was their world. I love you moma & daddy.

Many thanks goes to our friends, family, employers, church and prayer warriors. Thank you all for your prayers, cards, donations, phone calls, flowers, food and expression of love and support for our family during this very difficult time in our life.

If Tears Could Build a Stairway

If tears could build a stairway,
and memories a lane.
I would walk right up to Heaven
and bring you back again.

No farewell words were spoken,
No time to say "Goodbye". 
You were gone before I knew it,
and only God knows why.

My heart still aches with sadness,
and secret tears still flow.
What it meant to love you-
No one can ever know.

But now I know you want me
to mourn for you no more.
To remember all the happy times,
life still has much in store.

Since you'll never be forgotten, 
I pledge to you today-
A hollowed place within my heart
is where you'll always stay.

Mommy loves you so much and misses you more than words can ever explain.  I hope to see you in my dreams and look forward to the day that you run to meet me at the Gates of Heaven.

Within the 2 1/2 months of lying in the hospital awaiting Jacob's arrival, the Lord laid a scripture upon my heart......Philippians 4:13.  I wrote the scripture on my dry erase board in my room to remind me that I can do all things through Christ.

It has given me my strength to endure the past 3 years.   I remember eating dinner at the Ronald McDonald House one night with a couple and I noticed he had a tattoo on his arm but I could only see a portion of it so I asked him if he minded showing it to was of praying hands and underneath the hands was Philippians 4:13.  

One of the nurses from Shelby Baptist, Angela Smith, gave me a book on my birthday shortly after Jacob was born.  It was daily devotionals written by Billy Graham.  I opened the book up to my birthday, June 14, and at the very top of the page was this scripture:

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Philippians 4:13 

Professional Pictures courtesy of 
"Precious Memories" by Amanda Traywick 

The professional pictures were taken by Amanda Traywick, owner of "Precious Memories". She put together a memorial album of Jacob for my family in August 2006. She is a part of a team of photographers throughout the U.S. who do memorial albums for chronically and terminally ill children. She is such a sweet heart for taking the time to do this for the families. Thank you, Amanda! 

"Happy Birthday To You,"
"Happy Birthday To You,"
"Happy Birthday, Dear Jacob,"
"Happy Birthday To You."
"We Love You and Miss You, Punkin."

Saturday, June 2, 2007

 Today Jacob celebrated his birthday with Jesus.  I know it was a glorious celebration to see.  

We celebrated Jacob's Birthday by releasing three balloons, (red, green & yellow) his favorite colors.  Each balloon had a picture that big Brother Austin drew for Jacob.  Each card told Jacob how much he was loved and missed.  Austin and I sang "Happy Birthday" kneeling at Jacob's grave and then released the balloons watching them fade toward Heaven.  Austin was so happy to be able to send birthday wishes up to Jacob.

God gave me the best that could ever be,
And he had a plan just for me.

My life with you was not long,
But I'll always be here to keep you strong.

I am not in pain and there are no tears,
For I am free of all those fears.

I shall watch over you as you watched over me,
So please don't be sad for I am free.

When memories fail you just remember me,
For I have earned my wings and I am free.

Austin & Wesley, God laid this poem upon my heart to write.  You were the best big brothers in the world.  Jacob loved you both so very, very much.  I am so proud of you both for being so patient,  understanding and accepting of him.

I love you so much!

Brotherly Love

We remember the special day ,
Mom told us all about you.
A special baby was on the way,
It would be here very soon.

We were so very happy to hear,
Big brothers we were going to be. 

As we smiled, clapped and cheered,
A new baby we couldn’t wait to see.

The day you were born was terrifying,
You took one breath and that was all. 

Mommy was so upset and crying,
As they rushed you down the hall.

We were so scared to see you like that,
Doctors and nurses running with you.
In the waiting room we quietly sat,
Not knowing what to think, say or do.

We were told we had a baby brother,
But they didn’t expect you to live long.
We sat crying holding onto each other,
Praying that God wouldn’t take you home.

A “miracle” happened on that June day,
God allowed you to be a living testament.
He listened as we all joined hands to pray,
For strength and healing for the moment.

God allowed us to keep you for a little while,
Touching hearts and souls in many nations.
The story of your life has traveled many miles,
Teaching others about love, faith and patience.

The day mommy & daddy told us you were dying,
Shattered our hearts into so many pieces. 

We held your hand as we stood there crying,
Trying to understand why you would leave us.

We had so much more we had to do as brothers,
God could not take you from us now.

Riding bikes, swimming and chasing others,
We were supposed to grow up to be best pals.

God allowed us to spend one last week with you,
We took turns rocking you and singing songs. 

Our hearts would never be the same we knew,
For God would soon be taking you home.

You left this world snuggled in mommy’s arms,
The most peaceful look came upon your face. 

We knew you would be caused no harm,
For you were going to a much better place.

We miss you so very much and hurt everyday,
We want to see your sweet smile and hear you laugh.
We know that we will get to play again someday, 
 As we run hand in hand down Heaven’s golden paths.


Blessings in Disguise are Difficult to Recognize

God sends his "little angels"
in many forms and guises,
They come as lovely miracles
that God alone devises...

For he does nothing without purpose,
everything's a perfect plan
To fulfill in Bounteous measure
all He ever promised man... 

For every "little angel"
with a body bent and broken,
Or a little mind retarded
or little words unspoken, 

Is just God's way of trying
to reach and touch the hand
Of all who do not know him
and cannot understand. 

That often through an angel
whose "wings will never fly"
The Lord is pointing out the way
to His eternal sky. 

Where there will be no handicaps
of body, soul, or mind
And where all limitations
will be dropped and left behind... 

So accept these "little angels"
As gifts from God above
And thank Him for His lesson
in Faith and Hope and Love. 

"Grandparents Are A Special Gift"

Grandparents are a special gift
That God gives to each child.
Their love outshines the brightest star...
Their love can never be defiled.

Oh, but when a child becomes an angel,
Grandparents feel the pain and sorrow.
Beyond any pain they've known in life...
Or will ever come to know tomorrow.

For a grandparent holds a special love
For the child their child has had.
And, to lose what they hold dear...
Leaves them heartbroken and sad.

Their legacy is their grandchildren...
So how can they learn to survive?
Will the dreams of their tomorrows
Somehow be kept alive?

Yes, a grandparent is a survivor...
And life has taught them how to be.
For their wisdom, courage & love
Is carried from them... to You & me.

Author Kaye Des'Ormeaux 

Whisper of an Angel 
The whisper of an angel
Can open Heaven's gate, 
A glimpse of faith and courage
A love strong enough to wait, 

Whisper you are safe
Whisper softly, angel love, 
My heart is aching so
Needing comfort from above. 

Tell me you are with me
Whisper gently in my ear,
" You will always be my mommy"
In the quiet I will hear. 

My heart still aches to hold you
I close my eyes and see,
Your beautiful face now
And who you were to be. 

Through dreams I once held close
In the distance now, so far
Still you're more than just my child
You're the twinkle in the stars.
So I'll hear your angel whispers
" You never need to let me go,
Hold me, mommy, close within"
Though the pain and sorrow flow. 

One day we shall reunite Angel,
whisper words of grace,
And I promise I will hold you
In another time and place 




Are You Still A Mother When Your Child Is Not With You?

I thought of you and closed my eyes
and prayed to God today.
I asked what makes a mother
and I know I heard him say...

"A mother has a baby."
This we know is true.
But can you be a mother
when your baby's not with you?

"Yes, you can," He said
with confidence in His voice.
"I give many women babies.
When they leave is not their choice.

Some I send for a lifetime,
and others for a day.
Some I send to feel your womb
but there's no need to stay."

I just don't understand this, God.
I want my baby here.
He took a breath and cleared His throat
and then I saw a tear.

"I wish that I could show you
what your child is doing today.
If you could see your child smile
with other children and say,

'We go to earth to learn our lessons
of love and life and fear.
My Mommy loved me oh, so much
I got to come straight here.

I feel so lucky to have a Mom
who had so much love for me.
I learned my lesson very quickly.
My Mommy set me free.

I miss my Mommy oh, so much
but I visit her each day.
When she goes to sleep,
on her pillow is where I lay.

I stroke her hair and kiss her cheek
and whisper in her ear,
"Mommy, don't be sad today.
I'm your baby and I'm here." '

So, you see, my dear sweet one,
your child is okay.
Your baby is here in my home
and this is where he'll stay.

He'll wait for you with me
until your lesson is through.
And on the day that you come home,
he'll be at the gates for you.

So, now you see what makes a mother.
It's the feeling in your heart.
It's the love you had so much of
right from the very start.

Though some on earth may not see
you're a mother with a son.
They'll be up here with me one day
and know you're the best one."

The Brave Little Soul
By: John Alessi

Not too long ago in Heaven there was a little soul who took wonder in observing the world. He especially enjoyed the love he saw there and often expressed this joy with God. One day however the little soul was sad, for on this day he saw suffering in the world. He approached God and sadly asked, "Why do bad things happen; why is there suffering in the world?" God paused for a moment and replied, "Little soul, do not be sad, for the suffering you see, unlocks the love in people's hearts." The little soul was confused. "What do you mean," he asked. God replied, "Have you not noticed the goodness and love that is the offspring of that suffering? Look at how people come together, drop their differences and show their love and compassion for those who suffer. All their other motivations disappear and they become motivated by love alone." The little soul began to understand and listened attentively as God continued, "The suffering soul unlocks the love in people's hearts much like the sun and the rain unlock the flower within the seed. I created everyone with endless love in their heart, but unfortunately most people keep it locked up and hardly share it with anyone. They are afraid to let their love shine freely, because they are afraid of being hurt. But a suffering soul unlocks that love. I tell you this - it is the greatest miracle of all. Many souls have bravely chosen to go into the world and suffer - to unlock this love - to create this miracle for the good of all humanity."

Just then the little soul got a wonderful idea and could hardly contain himself. With his wings fluttering, bouncing up and down, the little soul excitedly replied. "I am brave; let me go! I would like to go into the world and suffer so that I can unlock the goodness and love in people's hearts! I want to create that miracle!" God smiled and said, "You are a brave soul I know, and thus I will grant your request. But even though you are very brave you will not be able to do this alone. I have known since the beginning of time that you would ask for this and so I have carefully selected many souls to care for you on your journey. Those souls will help you create your miracle; however they will also share in your suffering. Two of these souls are most special and will care for you, help you and suffer along with you, far beyond the others. They have already chosen a name for you". God and the brave soul shared a smile, and then embraced.

In parting, God said, "Do not forget little soul that I will be with you always. Although you have agreed to bear the pain, you will do so through my strength. And if the time should come when you feel that you have suffered enough, just say the word, think the thought, and you will be healed." Thus at that moment the brave little soul was born into the world, and through his suffering and God's strength, he unlocked the goodness and love in people's hearts. For so many people dropped their differences and came together to show their love. Priorities became properly aligned. People gave from their hearts. Those that were always too busy found time. Many began new spiritual journeys, some regained lost faith - many came back to God. Parents hugged their children tighter. Friends and family grew closer. Old friends got together and new friendships were made. Distant family reunited, and every family spent more time together. Everyone prayed. Peace and love reigned. Lives changed forever. It was good. The world was a better place. The miracle had happened. God was pleased. 

Please visit this webiste that was also set up for Jacob.  I do not know the lady, but a friend sent me the link.  It is very nice of her to honor Jacob.

I kept everyone updated on Jacob's condition by using the CaringBridge website.   I want to share the last few journal entries with you.

Journal Entry,  February 7, 2007

As many of you may know, Gary and I met with the team of doctors yesterday to discuss Jacob's condition. Within that room was some of the finest people that I have ever met in my life. Each and every one of them will always have a very special place in our hearts.

We were shown the CT scans of Jacob's head and the difference in the scan that I saw in October and the one that I saw of him from Saturday night are unreal. Jacob's brain is not growing it is shrinking. He suffered a very severe stroke and has a bad brain bleed. The type of stroke that he had is primarily seen in elderly people age 70+. They have never seen a stroke like this in a child. The damage is in the third ventricle of the brain which is one of the more important parts of the brain. It controls speech, swallowing, sight, etc.

From what we can see, the stroke was caused by the bone disease that Jacob has due to him not having kidneys. The disease has caused Jacob's vessels in his brain to become hardened and brittle. He will not get any better even with shunts in his head. The likelihood of him having more strokes and bleeds is extremely high. He will never be the Jacob we once knew. There is also the possibility of the hardening moving into his heart and other vital organs and vessels as well.

After much discussion, we all came to terms that Jacob will not get better and that keeping him on life support would only be delaying the inevitable.

Gary and I both knew before the meeting took place that "our" Jacob was no longer with us. I knew it Sunday morning when I looked into his eyes. The beautiful sparkle that was always there for me was gone. A mother knows. A part of me had already slipped away.

I cannot begin to tell you the pain that I have felt over the past few days. I feel like my heart has been ripped out. I hurt so bad at times that I feel like I could die but then I also feel totally empty as if the world has stopped.

They say that you never know what true love is until you bring a child into the will never know true pain and heart ache until you watch your child slipping from this world.

I now know how God felt as He watched His Son suffer and die on the cross.

The entire PICU team has been wonderful. They have/are making every effort to make this transition as smooth and easy as possible.

Jacob has been resting somewhat peacefully today. We did run into some respiratory issues later this afternoon but finally got his vent setting comfortable for Jacob.

I gave him a bath tonight for the first time since Saturday. I needed that special time with him. It was very heartwarming. 

Journal Entry, February 9, 2007

Jacob is doing absolutely wonderful today. He earned his angel wings last night at 11:26pm. He is now running and playing and having the time of his life.

Our plans for Jacob changed yesterday when his central venous pressures kept staying high. With the pressure being so high we were not going to be able to donate his heart. So we had to make the hardest decision we ever had to make in our lives……we decided that it was time to allow Jacob to run to Jesus’ open arms and be free from the pain and suffering.

Jacob and my family were scheduled to be taken down to a holding room outside the operating room at 10:00pm. A baby girl in Florida, 17 months old desperately needed a liver transplant and Jacob matched. We did not realize how many stipulations there are in organ donations. The only way Jacob could donate his liver was if he passed within an hour of being taken off his vent. There are so many mixed emotions there……….you want to hold on so long but yet you want him to go on to Heaven in order to give another baby the gift of life.

We had a very special time with Jacob before taking him down. Our pastor Brother Angles came and Jacob’s room was filled with so many friends and family. We had prayer and sang songs of worship and thanksgiving as Jacob rested on his daddy’s chest. It was very moving.

Our immediate family, pastor Angles, Dr. Makris, and Dr. Toful joined us to say goodbye. Jacob being Jacob fought so hard but felt no pain. I held him in my arms and told him “run to Jesus baby, run………you have been such a good boy and mommie loves you”. Brother Angles sang “Jesus Loves Me” and Jacob took Jesus’ hand at 11:26pm.

Funeral Arrangements have not been finalized. Tentatively the visitation will be Sunday afternoon somewhere between the hours of 2pm and 6pm at Anniston Memorial Gardens. The Celebration of Jacob’s Life will be on Monday at the Chapel at Anniston Memorial Gardens with burial to be in Wellington.

I want each of you to know that we love you and thank you for all the support that you have shown our family over that past 2 ½ years. May God bless you and thank you for allowing our family to share our special baby Jacob with you and your family. 

Jacob's Celebration of Life Ceremony

Journal Entry, February 13, 2007

What a beautiful celebration of Jacob’s life we have had the past few days. So many friends and family came to visit with us and say goodbye to our special angel.

For those of you who were not able to visit, being the detailed person that I am, I would love to share with you the details of Jacob’s Celebration of Life.

My wish was to be able to dress Jacob and place him in his bed (coffin) one last time. Steve, the funeral director was very hesitant to let us see Jacob at first. He not knowing how we would react was the cause of his hesitation of course. We both assured him that we would be fine and so he took us in to see Jacob. My one main concern was that I did not want Jacob to be caked in makeup. I was so happy to see the wonderful job that Steve did. Jacob looked absolutely beautiful! His makeup was natural looking and he had the sweetest smile on his face. I was so happy. My husband left the room and Steve helped me get Jacob dressed. I had not asked Steve earlier about putting Jacob in his bed but he was very gracious in honoring my request.

My husband and I chose a baby blue coffin for Jacob. It had a little boy angel embroidered on the inside lid to represent the angel that Jacob was to us. 

All of you that know Jacob knew that he hated to wear clothes. Unless we had to dress him to go out he always wore just his diaper around the house. So Gary and I wanted Jacob to be dressed as we always saw him. Not in a suit or dressy clothing but in his diaper and t-shirt. We know that is how Jacob would want to be dressed so we put him in his “Spoiled Rotten” t-shirt, his diaper and a pair of socks. I put his famous pacifier on the silk pillow case in his hand, his baby blue bible that was given to him by Amy Crain’s three children lay at his feet, his glow worm sat in the corner of his bed, his favorite frog chew toy that Sherrie, one of his nurses had given him was in his left hand and my guardian angel pin that has mine and his June birthstones in it on his shirt. He looked absolutely at peace. I could not take my eyes off of his sweet smile! I knew he was running and playing and having the time of his life and I know that God put that sweet smile on Jacob’s face to assure me that Jacob was happy and having no more pain.

I decorated the parlors with pictures of my family with Jacob. I sat some of his favorite stuffed animals around the pedestal platform that his coffin sat on. I put together a slide show with music that was playing in the sitting parlor. Everyone stood crying while watching the slideshow telling us how much he had touched their hearts and how he always had that big beautiful smile no matter what he was going through. I wanted this to be Jacob’s special day. I wanted it to be a day of Celebration of Jacob’s life.

My other two sons took it pretty hard especially Austin, my 7 yr old. He understood that Jacob was with Jesus and that he would see him again one day when he went to heaven. There were so many times during visitation when there was only a few people around that Austin knelt beside Jacob’s coffin, prop his head on his arm that he rested on the side of the coffin and softly stroked Jacob’s face. He tickled his nose like he used to do with Jacob when they would play. Sometimes he would just sit and hold Jacob’s hand for a little while. Several times I found him in the parlor lying in the floor watching the slide show and crying. It broke my heart and I felt so helpless.

Wesley, my 16 year old misses Jacob as much. He wanted to be with us when Jacob went to heaven and he told me that he does not regret one minute of it. He wanted to be one of Jacob’s pallbearers as well. I am very proud of my boys. They have been through a lot as well these last three years.

Jacob received many beautiful flowers and potted plants. My mom picked out a wooden cross that had white roses and purple flowers on it from me and my husband. It was made from split tree and looked very rugged but was so beautiful!

There were so many people who came to say goodbye to Jacob. It was wonderful to see all the people that Jacob had touched in his short time on Earth.

Jeff Angles opened the service with the song “I can only imagine.” Brother Robert read scripture and shared some memories of Jacob. The song “If you could see me now” was played and Dr. Rees Oliver, (Jacob’s Neonatalogist that transported him to Children’s when he was born) spoke about Jacob’s life and the impact that Jacob has had on the medical field as well as the spiritual world. Several people made the comment to me that Dr. Oliver missed his calling that he should have been a pastor. You could feel the Holy Spirit moving in that place. It was awesome! The Celebration was closed with a song that was written by Jeff Angles. The Lord laid it upon Jeff’s heart to write a song just for Jacob called "Jacob's Song". I cannot tell you how much this song touched my heart as well as everyone in the chapel. It was perfect.

I wanted to release doves at Jacob’s graveside service that were trained to fly back home but unfortunately, we could not find any that were trained. I decided on seven white doves to release in honor of Jacob and as a sign of completion.

Each grandparent, my boys, my husband and myself each took a dove and threw them up into the sky…… was a pretty picture for a moment………the doves came flying back down on the ground around us and the kids started chasing them. It was funny. I was picturing Jacob laughing and chasing them as well. Jacob has the white doves sitting and watching over him.

Mike Royer with Channel 13 News called and asked if it would be too much of him to ask me if he could send out his photographer and a reporter to do a story on Jacob’s Celebration. Mike did a story on Jacob last summer and we have kept in touch ever since and he wanted to do a story and thought it would be really special to air the story on the day of Jacob’s Celebration. I told him that it would be wonderful and we would be honored to do it.

My husband and I went back to the cemetery and spent about an hour there with the photographer and reporter telling of the special gift of Jacob being an organ donor and sharing Jacob’s story. It aired on Channel 13 last night at 10:00pm. I was pleased at how they presented the story.

I want each and every one of you to know that I am so thankful to have friends and family as precious as you are. My husband and I could not have made it through the past three years without our Lord and Savior and without the many prayers and support of all of you. I extend a very special “Thank You” to my mom and dad who have taken care of Jacob for the past year so that I could work. I don’t know what I would have done without them. Please say a prayer for them because they, like me, are feeling so lost and heart broken.

These are my footprints,
so perfect and so small. 

These tiny footprints,
never touched the ground at all. 

Not one tiny footprint,
for now I have wings. 

These tiny footprints were meant
for other things. 

You will hear my tiny footprints,
in the patter of the rain. 

Gentle drops like angel's tears,
of joy and not from pain. 

You will see my tiny footprints,
in each butterflies' lazy dance. 

I'll let you know I'm with you,
if you just give me the chance. 

You will see my tiny footprints,
in the rustle of the leaves. 

I will whisper names into the wind,
and call each one that grieves. 

Most of all, these tiny footprints,
are found on Mommy and Daddy's hearts. 

'Cause even though I'm gone now,
We'll never truly part.

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
Matthew 19:14 

My Mommy is a Survivor

My mommy is a survivor, or so I heard it said.
But I can hear her crying at night when all the others are in bed. 

I watch her lay awake at night and go to hold her hand.
She doesn't know I'm with her to help her understand. 

But like the sands on the beach that never wash away...
I watch over my surviving mommy who thinks of me each and everyday. 

She wears a smile for others...a smile of disguise.
But through Heaven's door, I do see tears flowing from her eyes. 

My mommy tries to cope with death to keep my memory alive.
But anyone who knows her, knows it's her way to survive. 

As I watch over my surviving mommy through Heaven's open door...
I try to tell her that the angels protect me forever more. 

I know that doesn't help her, or ease the burden she bears.
So, if you have a chance, go visit her and show her that you care. 

For no matter what she says or feels,
My mommy has a broken heart that time won't ever heal.






Tributes and Condolences
Happy Birthday, "Punkin"   / Mommy
  It is so hard to believe that you would have been celebrating your 9th birthday if you were still here with us.  This will be your 6th birthday to celebrate with Jesus.  You have had so many more friends to join you in the past fe...  Continue >>
4th Birthday Celebration in Heaven   / Mommy
                             "My First Birthday Pic" Happy Birthday my precious angel. Today yo...  Continue >>
4th Mother's Day Without You   / Mommy
Being a mother is the most precious gift God can give to a woman. There is no love stronger than the love between a mother and a child . I am so grateful that God blessed me with three beautiful loving boys. I am so very proud of my boys and the...  Continue >>
This has moved me like nothing, in a long time   / Karen Sexton (no relation )
I did not know jacob but the dedication put into this site has shown so much love that it has broken my heart that he was taken from you so soon. To be honest I have sat here and cried my eyes outbut could not put it away because it was so instiratio...  Continue >>
Happy Thanksgiving   / Mommy
Punkin, Tomorrow will be the 2nd Thanksgiving you will be celebrating in Heaven with Jesus and it seems as if it is even harder this year on me than it was last year.  I have really struggled this week dealing with you not being with us this ye...  Continue >>
God bless your family  / Tracy/Angel_Wings Stroble     Read >>
Merry Christmas, Punkin.  / Mommy     Read >>
Baby Jackson  / Mommy     Read >>
Maggie's Special Birthday Gift  / Mommy     Read >>
The Rainbows  / Mommy     Read >>
Sorry / Kelly Pritchett (none)    Read >>
Missing You  / Mommy     Read >>
R.i.p sweet angel  / Crystal Van Den Broek (stranger)    Read >>
Precious Jacob  / Veronica Wallace (stranger)    Read >>
Trovia / Annette     Read >>
More tributes and condolences...
Click here to pay tribute or offer your condolences
His legacy

Jacob's Daddy and I made the decision to donate Jacob's liver, heart valves and corneas.  He was not able to donate kidneys due to him being born without any and his lungs were diseased.

Jacob's liver was flown immediately to Florida to be transplanted into a 18 month old little girl.  We later found out that the surgeons were not able to use Jacob's liver due to his veins and arteries being abnormal.  

His heart valves were found to be infected which surprised us being that his heart was the healthiest organ he had.

His corneas were used to restore sight to a 3 month old baby boy and a 25 year old female, both whom live in North Carolina.

I am so very thankful that Jacob was able to give two beautiful people the blessing of seeing the world through his eyes.

November 2, 2007

I received a letter from Bridget, the mother of the baby boy who received one of Jacob's corneas.  I wanted to share his pictures with you.  He is a precious little angel!  Today, is also his birthday.....he is 1 yr old.  Happy Birthday, McKinley!

Jacob's Cornea Recepient
McKinley - 6 months old

McKinley at 11 months old
October 2007

Thank you Bridget for allowing my friends and family to join in the celebration of Jacob's gift of sight.  McKinley is a very precious, beautiful baby boy and he and your family will always have a very special place in my heart.




5091 Eulaton Road

Anniston, AL 36201

There is a time for everything,

and a season for every activity under heaven:

a time to be born and a time to die,

a time to plant and a time to uproot,

a time to kill and a time to heal,

a time to tear down and a time to build,

a time to weep and a time to laugh,

a time to mourn and a time to dance,

a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,

a time to embrace and a time to refrain,

a time to search and a time to give up,

a time to keep and a time to throw away,

a time to tear and a time to mend,

a time to be silent and a time to speak,

a time to love and a time to hate,

a time for war and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8


UPDATE AS OF 8-21-12

As many of you are aware, the thrift store was forced to close in May 2012.  However, when one door is closed God opens another.  My parents opened the doors to Jacob Christian Ministries Church in August 2012.  

Bible Study is on Thursday at 6pm and Church on Sunday at 2pm.  The church is pastored by Brother Jeff Mayo. 

We invite everyone to please come and join us.  May you have a blessed day.


UPDATE AS OF 6-28-12

It is with a very heavy heart that I share the news May 31, 2012, Jacob Christian Ministries Thrift Store was forced to close their doors after fighting for four long years to keep it in business.  It was impossible with all the other thrift stores that have populated the area.  My parents donated everything in the store to the Jimmie Hale Missions in Birmingham in hopes of being a blessing to the less fortunate.  They are in the process of repainting and have hopes of possibly having bible studies and Gospel singings to spread the word and finding a way of continuining to bless the families at Children's Hospital.

Thank you to all of you who supported Jacob Christian Ministries for the four years that we were open and thank you for all the many, many families who came in and shared your stories with us and allowed us to share our story of Jacob with you.  You are such a blessing to our family. 


In loving memory of Jacob, my parents have come up with a way to help parents of children who are in the hospital.  

Endless hours of sitting in the waiting rooms of the hospital gave my family and I the opportunity to share the gospel of how God had worked miracles in Jacob’s life. He was never supposed to have lived, but he fought for 2 ½ years and touched so many lives in that time.

We learned that you never really know what it is like to have a chronically or terminally ill child until you are actually put in that situation. No one can imagine how much it changes your whole world. It is a place that no parent ever wants to be.

When your child is in PICU or NICU, you have set hours that you can visit with them. Unless you have a room at the Ronald McDonald House or one of the “roach motels” down the street you spend your nights sleeping in a straight back chair in the waiting rooms. The majority of the people do not leave the waiting rooms in case something was to go wrong with their child they want to be right outside the doors. I was the same way.

You sit and talk with these families and you realize that maybe your child isn’t as bad off as some of the other children. They are all in bad condition because they are there for some reason or the other but when you talk to a parent whose two year old drowned in a pool and is now in a vegetative state, you realize that you are not as bad off because you can hold your child and love on them and they respond to you. That is what I mean when I say, “there is always someone worse off”.

February 3, 2007, we became one of those families that we always considered “worse off”. Jacob suffered a hemorrhagic stroke that left him in a vegetative state. Our beautiful little boy that used to stare at us with those big blue eyes that were so full of life, no lay lifeless in a hospital bed never to speak another word or give us that precious little smile he always wore. Our world was torn apart. We had to make the decision that no parent ever wants to make. We had to decide whether to leave our baby on life support and him never be the same and only continue to get worse or to let him go home to be with the Lord and free of pain. We chose to let him go.

In loving memory of Jacob,  my parents have opened a thrift store in order to help the families of the children who are in the hospital at Children’s Hospital in Birmingham, Alabama.

They have created “Jacob Christian Ministries Thrift Store”.  Donations of household goods, clothing, shoes, etc will be sold with 100% of the proceeds going to help the families of the children at Children’s Hospital in Jacob’s memory.

Jacob was a blessing to me and my family and in his short time on this Earth I always made it a point to share his story with as many people as I possibly could. Jacob had prayer warriors from all over the world. We were truly blessed to have such wonderful people love our baby through only hearing his story and seeing his pictures on the website.

God laid it upon my parents heart to do this for the other families that are struggling as we did. God said, “ask and you shall receive”……so I am asking on behalf of my parents, my family and all the families who are sitting at Children’s Hospital to please help make this dream a reality to those in need.

If you would like to make any type of donation or know of anyone who may be able to help, please feel free to call my parents, Gary Harper and Alice Harper at (256) 283-3247 or (256) 231-1082.   

Please remember, “what you may think is trash may be someone else’s treasure”. All donations are accepted.  

Thank you for prayers and support. May you have a blessed day. 

October 22, 2007
Storm damage to the Ministry

November 3, 2007
One step at a time

My parents are using money out of their own pockets to start the building process of the thrift store to house the donations that are being sold in order to donate proceeds to Children's Hospital.  It is going to be a slow process because my parents are both retired and my dad is disabled.  Steve Doss, Shawn, my dad, and Marvin Hanvey started the ground work this past Saturday.  Steve knows all about spending time at Children's Hospital due to having a chronically ill child himself.  He heard about the ministry needing help and he dedicated his time and services on Saturday and plans to continue to help until we one day are able to finally complete the building.  The ministry is in need of donations for the bulding fund.  If you know of anyone who owns a construction company or lumber company who would be wiling to donate to this charitable cause, please notify my parents.  We are not ones to beg for help but we are desparate to get the building built to house the donations.  The storm that came through last month destroyed alot of the donations they had already collected and we do not want that to happen is so heartbreaking.  They are trying so hard to get the ministry on it's feet to help these families but it is hard to do it without your help.

Thank you for your prayers, support and donations.

November 19, 2007

God has answered our prayers and continues to bless the Ministry! God touched the heart of the pastor of Mignon Baptist Church in Sylacauga. Last week he contacted my parents to let them know that he and several men in his church want to donate their time and supplies to build the store for the Ministry. My mom called me at work to tell me the good news and we just cried and cried. This is such a blessing!

Mignon Baptist is building the store in memory of a very special little boy who attended their church. Dylan Kissic, the son of Lisa and Jeremy Kissic and brother of Brady, is the “special angel” who is being honored in the construction of “Jacob Christian Ministries” thrift store.

Dylan was born with a heart defect and fought for two years touching lives all over the world. He had the biggest blue eyes and sweetest smile. He never admitted that he was sick and did not want you to tell him that he was sick. He prayed every night that God would give him a new heart. His prayers were answered May 16, 2006. He went home to be with Jesus while resting in his mommy’s arms. 

In loving Memory of
Dylan Ross Kissic

August 27, 2003- May 16, 2006

He and Jacob are free now from all the wires, tubes and machines. There is no more pain for them. I rejoice in the fact that they are in a much better place than we are. Our families are trying to cope with the huge void that has been left in our lives, especially during the holiday season when this will be the first for me not having Jacob and even though it will be Dylan’s 2nd Christmas in Heaven it is still just as hard on his family. We take it one day at a time and look forward to the day that our boys will come running to us at the Gates of Heaven. Please visit Dylan’s Memorial at to read of his journey.

The Ministry has not only been a source of assistance for the families at Children’s Hospital, it has also served as a place to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ and what He has done in our lives. My parents have had people come to the Ministry a sinner and leave a born again Christian. Several months ago, their neighbor came over to the Ministry and asked my mom and dad to pray with him. He asked Jesus into his heart that day. He went home to be with the Lord last Friday, November 23, 2007. He died of lung cancer. We rejoice in the fact that he is with the Lord now and it all started with the birth of one of God’s Special Angels that was sent here to change lives and bring His people home.

To the members of Mignon Baptist Church,
I cannot begin to tell you what a blessing you are to our family, the Ministry and all the families at Children’s Hospital. Thank you for opening up your hearts and sharing the love of Jesus Christ. We love you. 

Mignon Baptist Church 

Work Day

Update as of February 29, 2008

My parents have been working so hard on finishing the Thrift Store.  They have gotten the roof finished, the siding put on, the doors and windows in and are working so hard to get the inside finished soon so that they can get some of the donations moved into the building.  I am so proud of my parents.  They have worked from daylight to dark on this building for the past few weeks and are totally exhausted and still have so much to do.  They have put their heart and soul into building this ministry so that they can help others.  Please visit them and let them know what a great job they are doing.  Please let everyone you know about the ministry and for them to pass along the word to people they know.  The success of the ministry depends on the donations of the people.  Thank you to everyone for all your help in getting the ministry off the ground, especially Mignon Baptist for their donations in the building of the store. 

We Accept all donations, please call.  Thank you.  Phone:  (256)231-1082 or (256) 283-3247

The Thrift Store is NOW OPEN!!!

After many long, hard hours of working from daylight to dark, my parents finally opened the thrift store this past Saturday, April 12, 2008.  I am so proud of them and all the hard work they have done along with other friends and family to get this project off the ground.  Please take a look at the pictures below and come visit the thrift store.  We accept all donations.  Children's Hospital needs your help and we cannot do it without your donations.  All proceeds go to the parents of the children at Children's Hospital who are in need of financial help.  Thank you for prayers, support and donations.



He defied all odds.  He lived 2 1/2 years and amazed every doctor that came in contact with him.  His trials and triumphs changed many of the rules of the medical profession.  What the doctors learned from caring for Jacob will help improve the care that special children like Jacob need to live a longer, more normal life.

Dr. Rees Oliver was on call the day Jacob was born and I am so blessed that he was.  He prayed over Jacob the entire time he worked to keep him alive.  He told me many months later, that in his heart he did not see Jacob ever making it out of the operating room.  Dr. Oliver transported him, personally, to Children's Hospital in hopes of a miracle.

Dr. Reed Dimmitt was on call in the NICU when Dr. Oliver got Jacob to Children's Hospital.  He cared for Jacob for the next two months.  It was a very rocky two months but Dr. Dimmitt never gave up on him.  He also experienced the miracles that God works.  When Jacob was a week old his lung collapsed while on the ventilator and we were told that there wasn't much hope.   Jacob was awake and active the next morning.

Dr. Dimmitt is a big teddy bear, whether he wants you to know it or not.  He has the biggest heart.  He was the very first person to answer an email that I sent out notifying people of Jacob needing a kidney donor.  He went to the lab that same week and was tested to give Jacob his kidney!  I cried for days just knowing that he would make that kind of sacrifice for one of his patients.  He was a match.

Dr. Dimmitt is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at UAB and shares Jacob's story with many of his students as well as friends and family.

Dr. Oliver is a Professor of Pediatrics and shares Jacob's story all over the United States as he speaks to hundreds of medical students who come to hear how God and the medical profession work hand in hand.  He is an amazing man of God and believes whole-heartedly in the power of prayer and the works of the Great Physician, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.  

Dr. Oliver loves to tell the world of our Awesome God and what miracles he has worked in Jacob's life.

We had the honor of Dr. Oliver speaking at "Jacob's Celebration of Life," February 12, 2007.  He brought tears of both joy and sorrow as he spoke of Jacob's journey and the blessing it was for him and all the members of the medical staff at Children's Hospital and Shelby Baptist to have the pleasure of taking care of one of "God's special angels".

Jacob's smile would melt your heart. There was rarely a day when he wasn't smiling that big, precious smile!  He was a blessing to all that met him.  He is well known at Children's Hospital as "Baby Jacob, God's Miracle Child."

Jacob's Photo Album
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