A Huber Heights mother watched her 3-year-old son lose the fight for his life this summer.
Now, she is continuing the fight in her little son’s memory to help other children in the area.
“Christmas has been very hard ... I won’t lie. Every day is very hard,” said Brandi Stoll, whose son Hayden drowned five months ago in the family’s swimming pool.
Now she said her son is living on through the work in their community, done through her church that worships inside the Wayne High School gymnasium each Sunday.
“I vowed to Hayden on his deathbed that I would help in any way I could to make one parent never feel this,” Stoll said.
Hayden died in July after he fell into his family’s pool. He was without oxygen for 20 minutes. After a week, Hayden’s family made the heartbreaking decision to remove him from life support.
“If he can fight that fight, then I’m going to keep fighting in his memory,” Stoll said. “You never know what tomorrow’s going to bring.”
Stoll’s friend Jennifer Phillips of Beavercreek knows that all too well.
Her daughter Ella was diagnosed with cancer and beat it. But then a couple months ago, Ella relapsed.
“I had a need to do something for my friend Jen and her little girl, Ella,” Stoll said.
So she went to her pastor at Engage City Church and asked what they could do.
Last weekend, the church delivered a “City Wish” winter wonderland for Ella and two other area children. For one magical evening, which included a special visit with Santa Claus, the kids could forget their battle with cancer.
“Brandi took the worst experience that could ever happen to a mother, to a family, and she didn’t let it break her,” Phillips said. “She let it make her stronger. And through her grief she’s able to give hope and love to so many others.”
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