NORWOOD PARK — In her parents’ arms, Molly Morris, a cancer survivor with a huge smile and a happy disposition, passed away on Wednesday night. According to her mother, sharing the news in a Facebook post. the 8-year-old from Norwood Park who was identified as having stage 4 kidney cancer in 2021 “fought like hell” over the previous two years.
“Heaven gained the most beautiful, smart, strong, hilarious, sweet, sassy, kind, BEST big sister Angel last night,” Erin Morris wrote. “She had the brightest and most beautiful smile.”
Molly’s cancer journey captured the hearts of the Far Northwest Side and nearby suburbs. Neighbors hosted fundraisers and giving campaigns, put up ribbons and signs for her, and she was even given a City Council honor.
The #MollyStrong army, made of friends and neighbors, spread to businesses, schools, and local politicians, who banded together to show support for the family. A GoFundMe to help the Morris family with medical expenses has raised more than $160,000 since 2021.’
“Molly is the sweetest, silliest but super independent and stubborn [girl]. She’s a fighter,” Morris previously told Block Club.
Molly’s family posted pictures of Molly’s first day of therapy at Lurie Children’s Hospital on Facebook in May 2021. Erin Morris previously told Block Club that in November, she appeared to turn a corner and rang the bell at the hospital to announce the conclusion of her therapy.
In November, Erin Morris said, “She’s a miracle.” “We would want to express our appreciation to our wonderful community for supporting us for the past 1.5 years.”
The family received unfavorable news at the start of the year, but Molly was able to experience a rather normal Christmas vacation. Her mother later wrote that cancer had returned. More fundraisers this month were held in Molly’s honor, and one family donated $4,000, the Morrises shared on Facebook.
On Thursday, though, the Morris house was quiet as the family grieves, Erin Morris said. Molly’s younger sister, Annie, is also heartbroken, her mother said.
“The void of Molly Grace will be felt on a million levels for us and thousands of people. Molly united strangers and whole communities like nobody before her. She showed the world how much love and kindness exists,” Morris said. “We will never, ever let a day go by without mentioning her name or rehashing a hilarious Molly story.
“We promised her we wouldn’t let anyone forget her, ever. We also promised her we would fight like hell for all the other children and families.”
St. Monica’s Catholic Academy, where Molly attended, also announced her demise on social media on Thursday morning and changed its Facebook profile picture to one of the Morris family.
The community and Molly’s medical staff, who aided with her treatment, gave to her cause, and helped the family over the past two years, were thanked profusely by the patient’s family.
“We appreciate you, MollyStrong Army. Thank you for surrounding our family with such love and care every day, Morris said. We will ensure that she continues to change the world well beyond yesterday because she has already done so.
After news of Molly’s death, people again began donating to the family’s GoFundMe. You can donate to the fundraiser here.
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