Laura Hillier was diagnosed with leukemia at the young age of 13. For four years, she was cancer-free.
Sadly, the cancer came back.
Laura, a talented and admired senior at Nelson High School in Ontario, Canada, lost her battle to this horrible disease on January 20, 2016.
Later that day, her family broke the news to their many friends and followers on the Hope for Laura Facebook page:
“She fought bravely and all of you would have been so proud of her. Her poise, her courage, her strength and her pure spirit shone through right until the end.”
To commemorate Laura’s life, her family members, classmates, and teachers decided to break out their colored markers and do something incredible on the surface of her casket.
The photos and story went viral, touching the hearts of strangers all over the world…
On January 20, 2016, Laura Hillier passed away at the age of 18. She died of acute myeloid leukemia while waiting for a transplant bed.
At the time of her death, Laura was surrounded by loved ones at a hospital in Canada.
Laura was first diagnosed with cancer at the age of 13. She was in remission for four years before relapsing in May of 2015.
At Nelson High School in Ontario, Laura was known for her love of music and theater.
She was able to receive her 12th grade yearbook before her passing, but her classmates and family members wanted her funeral service to feel like a true “yearbook send-off.”
To commemorate her life, her infectious joy, and her great talent, Laura’s family, friends, neighbors, teachers, classmates, hospital staff, and co-workers came together to turn her casket into a yearbook of stunning proportion.
Handwritten all over the casket were heartfelt notes scribbled in all different colors.
The powerful images of Laura’s stark white casket covered in colorful messages are going viral. The inscriptions are warm, personal, and touching.
You were musical. You were artistic. You were understanding. You were my bestest friend.
Life is a song…Sing ’til your heart’s content
Very brave and strong. You will always be a hero.
Laura’s favorite color, purple, was also perfectly woven into her funeral service — from the beautiful flowers to the clothing worn by those in attendance, whether it be a scarf or tie.
Donations in Laura’s name can be made to Coast to Coast, a national charity that works to put an end to childhood cancer.