A Sea to Sky family is grieving the loss of their littlest Angel.
Five-week-old Alejandro (Alejo) Andres Quinn Angel died Feb. 25 in his parents’ arms, according to a statement on behalf of the family sent by the baby’s uncle Felipe Angel.
“He was not in pain; he was peaceful when he took his last breath,” the statement reads.
Alejandro was diagnosed at one week old with a very rare form of pediatric cancer. His parents, Erin and Federico Angel of North Vancouver, had been scouring the globe for treatment for their newborn.
They launched a GoFundMe campaign that aimed to help them access any available treatment outside of Canada and asked for those who couldn't donate to think of the child every night at 8 p.m.
Donations and well-wishes poured in from locals who wanted to help.
The day after his passing, on Feb 26, the family received the news that Alejo had been accepted into an infant treatment trial at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.
“Although a beacon of hope, we acknowledge this would have been a very difficult journey and are comforted that Alejo’s time with us was not in discomfort,” the family's statement said.
“We thank all the medical institutions, professionals and healers who were so compassionate and shared our determination to do everything possible for Alejo.”
The family also thanked all those who have reached out and supported them in the last few weeks.
“We cannot thank you enough for your support for Alejo, Erin, Federico, the Quinn, and Angel families through this difficult time. We are left with such an immense force of gratitude for all of you who have given us strength to put one foot in front of the other.”
The GoFundMe campaign has been closed. It had raised close to $300,000.
According to the statement, Alejandro’s parents will use a portion of the donations received for putting Alejo to rest, for counselling to help them heal, and to cover some of Federico’s lost income as he had left his job for a time to find help for his son.
“In the name of Alejandro (Alejo) - meaning ‘defender of mankind,’ the lion’s share of your generous donations will be gifted to infant cancer treatment programs and research so other little fighters facing similar challenges get the chance to grow up.”