A small Pennsylvania community is now mourning the loss of a sweet 10-year-old girl after she died in her sleep while spending the night at a friend’s house.
Sleepovers with friends are an essential part of growing up for many girls across the country.
My best friend and I spent many sleepover evenings in her backyard catching fireflies and toads and “borrowing” blackberries from her neighbor’s bush. We’d also watch movies, blast Aaron Carter and eat all of the junk food her parents would let us.
On Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018, Sophia Daugherty, a fifth-grader in New Castle, went to her best friend’s house to build similar sleepover memories.
While she was sleeping, her blood sugar dramatically dropped; she was rushed to the emergency room the next morning, according to WPXI. She had suffered brain trauma from the dangerously low levels.
A GoFundMe was set up while she was fighting to help cover medical costs and share updates.
Even though Sophia lived with Type 1 diabetes, she didn’t let her medical restrictions stop her. She was a cheerleader, a softball player and a Girl Scout.
Many in the community referred to her as “sweet Sophia,” according to Superintendent Len Rich.
After fighting in the hospital for four days, she tragically passed away on Wednesday, Sept. 19th.
A Go Fund Me update read, “She went home to heaven on Wednesday September 19, 2018 at 3:44pm. She was surrounded by her family and friends. She no longer suffers from this disease. Your prayers and support are priceless.”
Now the community is mourning the loss of the precious little girl, together.
The school district has enlisted the help of counselors from the school and the community to help students and teachers who knew Sophia work through their grief.
“Just having to deal a lot with kids, we have great staff here. Our counselors are great,” Dan Svirbly, principal of Sophia’s school district, told WPXI. “Our high school counselors came down and helped out. We brought in community counselors. So this whole community has been here and we’re just trying to support the kids and the staff as best we can.”
He just wants his students to know that it’s OK to not be OK.
“One thing we believe is it’s best for us to be here together. It’s normal to grieve,” he said. “It’s normal to cry. It’s normal to feel terrible. It’s normal not to understand why. But it’s better that we all go through it together and we rely on one another.”
Sophia’s parents said that they plan on donating her organs.
I can’t even imagine their grief. Our thoughts and prayers go out to those who knew sweet Sophia.
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