Alpine ski racer Bode Miller has had the kind of year that can break a person. Tragedy struck the Olympic athlete’s family this summer when his 19-month-old daughter briefly escaped her mother’s watchful eye and fell into a neighbor’s pool.
Although Emmy was quickly pulled from the water, resuscitation efforts by the family and emergency responders did not revive her, and the little girl died after the drowning accident. Bode’s wife, Morgan, was about six months pregnant with their third child at the time.
There’s no pain that can compare to that of a parent who has lost a child, and the holiday season is a hard time for anyone who has lost a loved one. Fans’ thoughts were with the Miller family as they navigated the difficult time.
The family came up with a heartwarming way to pay tribute to Emmy’s memory while still celebrating their family, which grew with the birth of son Easton in October.
Morgan shared her feelings on the bittersweet holiday in a raw, honest Instagram post.
Bode and Morgan have had an incredibly difficult year.
It started off joyously as the couple enjoyed time with their children. At the start of 2018, Bode and Morgan shared two children, Nash and Emmy. Bode also has two children from previous relationships, son Nate and daughter Dace.
In April, the couple announced they were expecting their third child together with this sweet Easter post.
Just two months after the announcement, tragedy struck the family. They revealed that 19-month-old Emmy had died after a drowning accident.
Since Emmy’s death, the Miller family has dedicated themselves to raising awareness about pool safety. The CDC reports that drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death for children ages 1 to 4.
It was particularly difficult for Morgan, who couldn’t succumb to her mourning without putting the child inside her at risk. She credits her midwives for their critical help and support during the heartwrenching time.
“Thank you for all the love and support and to our midwives @lindseymeehleis and @courtneykellis for helping us find the support our family needs during this impossible time,” she wrote.
Morgan was blown away when a 3D sonogram revealed an angelic figure seemingly holding her unborn son. She believes in her heart that it was a sign that Emmy was with the brother she’d never get to meet.
Bode and Morgan welcomed baby Easton on October 5.
His birth came just a month ahead of what would have been Emmy’s 2nd birthday.
For Christmas, a time when many who have lost a loved one are heavy with grief, the Millers chose to share pictures from a photo shoot celebrating their family while honoring Emmy’s memory.
Morgan’s caption provided an honest look at what she was going through:
“2018 has been a year full of overwhelming sadness and overwhelming joy. We have spent half of the year mourning and attempting to heal the loss of our angel which feels like an impossible battle all while celebrating the birth of our son.”
“Seeking normalcy for our children has been our driving force forward. Normally I would be looking forward to a ‘fresh beginning’ in 2019 but there is no more starting fresh after the loss of a child. So here’s to a healthy 2019 full of personal growth and creating many memories with my babies, full of smiles and laughs. Wishing everyone a special holiday season surrounded by loved ones.”
We can’t begin to imagine the amount of strength it has taken this family to push through this year. We hope that 2019 brings them all the happiness and healing one can get in a situation like theirs.
The Millers have the support of so many behind them as they navigate their new normal, and they do everything they can to raise awareness in memory of Emmy.