A Utah family mourns the loss of their two-year-old toddler, one week after he fulfilled his final Christmas wish.
Miles Agnew had been in hospice care for months and his health was deteriorating as the days passed. Two weeks ago “his little body went into shock and has started to shut down. We don’t know what happened,” his mother, Michelle Agnew, told ABC News.
Michelle shared another painful message on Wednesday as she announced Miles had died after a battle with issues including microcephaly, spastic quad cerebral palsy, cortial vision impairment, intractable epilepsy, brain malfunctions and a feeding intolerance.
“It is with a very heavy heart that I’m announcing the passing of Miles Agnew. Last night he quietly passed away in the arms of his parents and surrounded by loving family,” she wrote in a Facebook post.
Just weeks before Miles’ death, he received a special visitor to bring Christmas cheer while at the hospital .
On December 5, Miles and his two siblings were visited by Santa with help from the Secret Sleigh Project, an organization that grants home-bound and medically fragile children with visits from the the magical figure.
“With the turn in Miles' health and trying to make more memories as quickly as we can we didn't think we would be able to do our Santa visit,” Michelle told ABC News.
“We treasure our time and our memories with our family so much. Although we have had so much heartache in our lives we try our hardest to keep moving forward,” she said.
Miles and his siblings, Hailey, 13, and Taveon, 11, sat on Santa’s lap for the final time together.
Jerry Bodily, who was Santa for Miles, said the emotional visit hit close to home for him.
“Back in the 70s when I met my former wife, she had two daughters, her youngest had been diagnosed with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, and six weeks after we met, she lost her battle, so I knew what the family was going through,” Bodily said.
"I can’t lie, I got choked up, and there was a tear in Santa’s eye, but this was for this family’s memory," he added.
The Agnews, who adopted Miles at three months, have also lost two other children due to genetic conditions.
A service will be held for Miles on December 16, in Salt Lake City, his obituary states.
The family says in lieu of donations to a GoFundMe page set up against their wishes, they ask that anyone interested in donating support the Primary Children’s Hospital, where Miles was being treated.0comments
“Many thanks to those that have already expressed their condolences, the Agnews are very grateful for the outpouring of love and support,” Michelle wrote.
“We have been so blessed and honored to have Miles as part of our family. We will never forget the time we had with him and will cherish it forever,” the family wrote in the obituary.