Avery Lynn Canahuati was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy, type-1′an incurable genetic disease‘after her mother noticed she wasn’t progressing normally. Though her doctors said she could live up to 18 months, Avery passed away Monday, at just five months old.
Though her life was short, she not only managed to check a few items off her bucket list, but she also made a big difference in the lives of other children with SMA and warmed the hearts of people around the world through her blog.
Started by her father, who wrote in the first person as if Avery were the author, the blog was originally intended to keep family and friends up to date on Avery’s condition. But it turned into much more: A way to raise awareness of SMA and a reminder for everyone to appreciate the little moments in life we might take for granted.
‘Imagine you’ve been diagnosed with an incurable genetic disease and you are told you will not only lose your ability to walk and move your arms, but you will die between now and the next 18 months,’ Avery’s dad wrote, ‘What would you do?’
For Avery, the answer was to check things off her bucket list.
In between going to her first baseball game, having thousands of people cheer for her, shaking hands with ‘super hot baseball players’, opening a birthday gift from a stranger and getting 1,000 smiles mailed to her, Avery also managed to inspire millions.
In a post announcing Avery’s passing, her father added two last things she can scratch off her list:
1. Not let SMA take my smile away
2. Take one last breath, then take one more before I go to live with my Uncle Bryant, Nana Carolyn, Papa George, and all my great Grandparents (Tommy, Laura, Jim, Walter, Julia, Joseph, and Audine).
He also encourages readers to continue learning from his daughter by sharing her story and remembering her plea.
‘If we can help save a few of my future friends and their mommy, daddy, and loved ones from SMA, then my life, while cut short in time, will be beyond fulfilling in stature.”
-Katharine Watts, Associate Web Editor