Doctors said 9-year-old Bailey Cooper have just a few weeks or even a few days left. But the dying boy with cancer lived longer than expected, unexpectedly holding out long enough to meet and name his baby sister.
At that time Bailey’s mom told him that he was going to have a sister. Bailey couldn’t let go without cuddling her. The baby was born in November and Bailey suggested a name on the way to the hospital, a name that stuck with her.
He named her Millie, which means ‘soft strength’. Within month of her birth, Bailey was the model older brother. He showed her love in the best possible ways due his condition. He loved her deeply and held her close to his heart during the short time they spent together.
Bailey’s diagnosis and series of remissions
Bailey Cooper first was diagnosed ill in 2016. What doctors initially suspected was a viral infection quickly turned out to be something much worse: Non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a rare form of cancer that develops in the network of vessels and glands in the body.
When the doctors diagnosed Bailey, he was already in stage 3. Within 15 months, the boy and his family had been through a lot of ups and downs.
Bailey’s cancer went into remission for a while. But during a family vacation, doctors called with bad news: his cancer had returned.
Bailey’s family tried stem cell transplant.
Doctors only gave the 9-year-old boy with cancer “days or weeks” to live. But doctors ignored this sweet boy’s determination to meet his new sister. Bailey’s mother, Rachel, was pregnant. And Bailey Cooper has made it clear he’s not going anywhere until he meets his little sister!
Bailey’s last days
The family knew Bailey probably wouldn’t survive to celebrate Christmas, but encouraged him to write a list of gifts he would love. But his parents saw that they seemed to have been chosen with his younger brother Riley, in mind.
Knowing he was dying, Bailey was thinking of his funeral and asked everybody to wear superhero outfits.
He told his parents at their last family reunion, “You can only cry for 20 minutes.”
When his grandmother wished to take his place, Bailey told her: “That’s really selfish, Nan, you have grandchildren to take care of.”
“On Christmas Eve, we were at his bedside. We knew it wouldn’t be long. We said, ‘It’s time to go, Bailey. Stop it.’”
“Then he took his last breath with a single tear fell from his eye.”