Coping with Grief
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Our beautiful brave Daughter. Alyssa Jane Manfredonia was born on March 25th, 2008 in Margate, Florida. She died in her parents arms on November 18th, 2023.
From the moment she arrived, her inner joy seemed to shine. Everyone loved her instantaneously and adored her from day one. Alyssa was the epitome of love, grace, and gratitude with just enough spunk and sass.
Alyssa was loved fiercely by her parents, Joseph and Carol Manfredonia. She will continue to be the brightest light in their lives as she remains in their hearts.
She made an instant impact with everyone who met her. Alyssa had enough faith for the world and in her 15 short years she brought people back to God, and their faith. We have been blessed to hear stories from people that have shared.the influence that she had in their lives.
Alyssa was diagnosed with an inoperable, high grade brain tumor on October 18th, 2017, when she was 9 years old. We were told that she had 12-18 months to live. We researched, pleaded, and begged until we ended up at Dana Farber in Boston, Massachusetts. Albeit agonizing, she enrolled in a clinical trial that gave her and us 5 more years to love each other.
From her experience she knew life was a gift and aspired to become a child-life specialist to help other children suffering with cancer.
While Alyssa was going through her treatments she started painting which was very therapeutic for her. The expressions in her paintings reflected what was in her heart. We must have over 50 paintings on canvas which we will treasure for years to come. She was creative with passion for the arts and music.
Alyssa loved the simple things in life like spending time with her friends and family, which was the utmost importance to her. Nothing else mattered and her old soul was always well aware of how precious all of those moments were. Alyssa was brave beyond compare and continued to say, "God's Got This", from the beginning to the end.
She attended Saint Jude School in Boca Raton, Florida, a Saint Jude Saint forever. Alyssa made her Confirmation there in February 2023. After her diagnosis she transitioned to Salt Academy which enabled her to have some sense of normalcy as she traveled back and forth to Boston for her treatments. What a blessing that was for our little girl ! She graduated from there and was beaming in her cap and gown as she received her grammar school diploma.
Alyssa started 9th grade at Saint John Paul Academy and we couldn't have been happier for her. She was able to attend her first homecoming dance, football games,and participate in the drama club. This was a time of rebirth for her, she was moving forward from her illness.
Alyssa did not allow cancer to define her. Alyssa was an adventurer and a thinker (boy, did she love to talk). She could converse with adults on complex concepts, but enjoyed being a kid. She was always curious and inquisitive. A deep thinker and had a heart of empathy for those she loved and all of mankind, a true people person.
She embraced every waking moment with her Mother and Father and went on great adventures together. She relished every moment!
She loved every genre of music and live entertainment. She could name that tune in 5 notes. She let the music move her and did not care who was watching. She would dance at the drop of a hat. That small but mighty girl sure had moves.
Even though she was suffering, the world was not aware and only saw her smile and perseverance. She never complained and was grateful for every day God gave her. She never had a shortage of hugs, faith, a kind word, or compassion for every person she came in contact with.
Alyssa's brain tumor was stable until it came back with a vengeance in March, 2023. We all honestly thought that Alyssa was granted a miracle. We will be heartbroken until we can reunite with her in heaven, our baby girl.
Alyssa will join her baby sister, Jayna Marie in heaven. To be a big sister at last, being a bit bossy yet giving great advice.
She is survived by her Grandparents, Guiseppe and Rita Fabbio Manfredonia, Jane Rynca Marzano, Frank Raszkowski (D) and his wife, Mary Giese Raszkowski.
Sweet niece to Frederick Manfredonia and Migdalia Rivera, Joanne Manfredonia, Cheryl Munson, Frank Raszkowski, Ann Sands,and Genevieve Zaccherio. Cousin to Kristin Manfredonia-Watts, Anthony Coons, Dylan Munson, Jenna Munson, Jessica Coons, J.J Augusta, Dominic Sands, and Julianna Sands. A plethora of Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins in Italy and the United States whom she loved very much.
A special Thanks to Cousins Antoinette Desisto, David Maurice, Anna (Desisto) and Michael Weiss, Uncle Kevin and Gaston, Michael and Emi Altshuler, and Kristine Edmundson. You all had a profound effect on Alyssa's life. You made her smile on her darkest days and beyond.
In addition, we would like to extend our Thanks to all of the Doctors and Nurses at Broward Medical Center, Pediatric Oncology, especially Dr. Hector Rodrigues. The Jimmy Fund Clinic, Boston Children's Hospital, and Christopher's Haven in Boston, Massachusetts, and the Children's Hospital of Atlanta.
It is virtually impossible to Thank all of the people that have supported and prayed for Alyssa on this journey. She had an army behind her and we will be forever grateful !!
A visitation will be held from 3-8 PM on Saturday, November 25 and Sunday, November 26 at Glick Family Funeral Home. A Wake Service will be held at 7:00 PM on Sunday, November 26 at the Funeral Home. To watch the live stream of the Wake Service please click the following link http://meet.google.com/dfn-pfbc-abs. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11:00 AM on Monday, November 27 at St. Jude Catholic Church in Boca Raton. Entombment will follow at Our Lady Queen of Heaven Catholic Cemetery in North Lauderdale.
In lieu of flowers, the family is respectfully requesting that donations be made toward a foundation in Alyssa's honor, to be named Alyssa's Angels. Checks can be payable to Alyssa's Angels or at GoFundMe under Alyssa Manfredonia http://gofund.me/dd4031c9.