Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Santa arrived on a motorcycle to celebrate an early Christmas with a teen dying of cancer.

The church was filled to capacity for the funeral Mass for Devin Kohlman; the Port Clinton, Ohio boy whose city put up lights and sang carols to fulfill his wish for an early Christmas.

The town gave comfort to a dying teen.

“Death does not take away our sadness. That’s why we have each other.” Father John Missler said during Devin Kohlman’s funeral Mass on Friday.

Giving comfort also can bring comfort. It’s a shared experience that makes us feel good about ourselves and lets us know that we are not alone.

The town of Port Clinton, Ohio gave comfort and bid farewell to 13-year-old Devin Kohlman who lost his battle with brain cancer on Monday. They came together to give an early Christmas to a teen who would not see one this year.

An Ohio town fulfills a Christmas wish for a dying child.

Devin Kohlman was only 12 yrs. old when diagnosed with brain cancer in the summer of 2012. His family was optimistic at first but then the cancer progressed.

Devin was flown from Cincinnati, where he was being treated, to Port Clinton on Oct. 27th so that he could spend his final days at home. Residents filled the city's main street late at night as Devin was driven home with a police escort. Devin’s final wish was to celebrate Christmas, but he would not survive two more months.

Doctors had told the family of 13-year-old Devin Kohlman that he didn't have long to live so hundreds of residents in the Ohio city of Port Clinton along Lake Erie spent the past few weeks giving him an early Christmas.

His community got to work fulfilling Devin's wish of being home for his favorite holiday. The city put up a Christmas tree, and Santa showed up on a motorcycle. "You'll be the one who gets the moon this year," Santa told Devin during his visit.

The town sang carols outside the family's home, piled tons of shaved ice into drifting snow near his window and decorated a park with colorful strings of lights, reindeer cutouts and a red "Merry Christmas, Devin" sign.

Devin passed away shortly after his early Christmas.

Devin, died Monday afternoon, said family friend Roseann Hickman, but not until his final wish was fulfilled by a compassionate, caring town.

While family and friends gathered for a vigil after his death, an early-season snow fell over the city. It was as if Devin was thanking the community who helped his last wish come true.

"It brought him a sense of joy to know so many people cared," Hickman said.

Thousands of cards from as far away as France and Ireland filled the family's apartment. They had been sent by people who had heard his story, Hickman said.

"He's reminded everybody all over the world of what's important and that's love."

She said her son loved playing sports and being the center of attention. The family once joked that he'd be famous someday, Devin's mother said.

Toys and teddy bears were sent, too. Donation boxes were set up all over the city of about 6,000 people. Devin gave away most of the gifts, making sure his classmates who came to visit him took home a stuffed bear, Hickman said.

"He touched a lot of people," Hickman said. "I hope our community continues to show the love for each other."

The Source

Funeral fund

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