Posted by: searchingforsolidfooting | November 30, 2015


Kate came home Saturday from Ste.Justine. She had been battling a recurrence of her graft versus host disease (GVHD) and we had a case conference on Friday with CHEO and Montreal to discuss possible next steps.

On Friday afternoon, Kate had a significant deterioration. She was kept comfortable by her Montreal team, and on Saturday morning it was determined that Kate would come home and be cared for her by palliative care team from Rogers House.

Kate was awake and alert when we arrived home. She saw her Christmas tree, she had time with her grandparents and with her brother. Her pain was quickly managed and upon getting that relief, Kate went into a deep sleep. She has not woken since Saturday evening and friends and family are with us holding vigil and helping us to say goodbye to her.

We love her and we are doing all we can to support her and let her know how much all of you love her. Thank you for all the words of encouragement, support, and prayers over the past few months.
Julie, Brian, Jack and Kate





  1. We have never met, but live in the same neighbourhood and I have heard of your family’s struggles. I have always hoped for the best outcome and I am so sorry to read that your little girl has passed away. My deepest condolences. Tricia Wigle

  2. My heart goes to you and your family.
    I don’t know if we will ever understand life’s challenges and mysteries…
    My thoughts and prayers are with you.
    Love & Light,
    Louise, Melina C.’s friend

  3. Dear Julie, Brian and Jack,

    My deepest sympathy. Kate and your family are a major inspiration for all those who know you.

    Thank you Julie for taking Kate to OGC and giving us the privilege of knowing and working with this amazing girl. I will always remember her laughs and her great sense of humor as she ran around the gym and as she did her gymnastics.

    She will be greatly missed.

    Unfortunately, I am heading out of town this weekend for work and I will not be able to attend Kate’s wakes.

    You are all in my thoughts and prayers.

    Denise Bussière
    Ottawa Gymnatics Centre Kindergym Coach

  4. Neil and I send our love to your family.

  5. Big hugs, thoughts and prayers to you and Brian and kids. Take care Julie. Bill & family. PS. I hope you find your solid footing soon and continue to share your journey with us and others.

  6. I came across your beautifull Kate’s story last night while checking up on Fallon. I am so very sorry for what you and your beautifull strong girl have been through and wish you and your family strength and peace for the future.

    I have never contacted anyone on the web like this but I was so sad when I found your story last night and amazed at the strength of Kate and your family, that I wanted to share my story with you which I am sure at the moment you may not want to hear but I hope it may make you feel a little less isolated by this terrible disease.

    I have two angels in heaven as a result of SIFD. Freya died at 2 days without diagnosis at the time and, we lost Harry two months ago at 7 months old to SIFD. He was 5 weeks post bone marrow transplant and also wonder if the transplant was the right thing to do, however how can you know completely what will be the right choice when the choices you face are equally uncertain and still will not give you the future you really want for your child and that they deserve after such a struggle. Be kind to yourself, was the best advice I have received after losing Harry which did not make sense to me at first but i am now beginning to understand a little. 7 years of fear, worry and grieving for the kind of life kate deserved to be having I’m sure has left you beyond exhausted.

    I don’t wish to give you more to think about at this time as I know any bit of news about this condition you come across leaves you with even more questions and disbelief , but please know you are in the thoughts of a family you don’t know, somewhere in the world sending you love, strength, compassion and hope for the future. I am sure our angels will have met already.

    Much love the clarkson family xxx

  7. My heart hurts this evening. I am so sorry for your loss.

  8. I am so sorry to hear about Kate. She was a beautiful little girl who touched many lives, and I feel very honoured to have been able to get to know her and the rest of your family through my work at the pool. I’m keeping you all in my thoughts.

  9. Many hugs and prayers from Kyram and I.

  10. I have nothing but prayers and thoughts for your entire family. Kate was nothing but smiles and an inspiration to all around her. We in the ptp room at mothercraft will always remember Kate with positive thoughts and memories. If any of you need anything we at mothercraft are here to help

  11. My thoughts and prayer are with you and your family.
    I am so sorry…

  12. My heart breaks for you all Julie. So so saddened to hear this.

    God Bless

    Paul, Kerri and Mia

  13. We have many mutual friends through Ultimate, although I don’t think we have ever met. Reading your blog was very inspiring on the efforts that the whole family has endured throughout Kate’s battle. I went through small emotional swings of heartfelt sorrow and anger about not enough funding to research into the disease, I can’t imagine your journey throughout it. Godspeed sweet Kate, you will be missed by many!

  14. Oh Julie! – Kate is in my thoughts and prayers. I wish your loving, beautiful family, many sweet moments as you stand vigil by your daughter. Though her stay on this earth will certainly not have been long enough, it will forever be impactful and Kate will always be remembered. Your entire family has done a lot to advocate for rare disease patients and advance their cause…. and Kate was at the source of it all. Be proud, hug another and keep kissing your little one.


  15. Hi Julie: I just read about Kate. She has gone thru so much for a little girl. My heart goes out to her and you and your family. Je vais faire une prière…. Take care of yourself.

  16. Julie,
    Kate is such a precious child, and has brought so much love and joy to so many people. I continue to keep Kate and your family in my thoughts and prayers.

  17. Julie,
    Our thoughts, prayers, hope and love are with you, Kate and the boys. Kate’s bravery, strength, resilience and perseverance is beyond compare, and I’m so thankful for all our children have taught us…
    Your friends,
    Karlis, Giselle, Jakob and Callia

  18. I pray for peace, patience and strength for you and your family. I pray for a wonderful, happy, and peaceful here after for little Kate. May she always be a source of strength for you and your family. May she always bring out the best and deepest love and care. Thinking of Kate. Love, Yumna (Byaan’s mum from J.K.).

  19. I’m at a loss for words. I had the privilege of many admissions of Kate , her last one was before her Montreal trip. I have watched her grow up to such a lovely sweet BRAVE, funny kid. Her nurses on 4 east are grieving with her incredible family….thoughts of better days, and terrific little grins of Kate.
    Brenna RN 4 east

  20. I had the great pleasure of being in a classroom watching Kate’s beautiful smile that lit up the room on many many school days last year, and was amazed by her strength and that of her family! My heart is broken for her family, but she is and will always be a gift to many here now and forever will be for all that she has taught everyone. Keep SMILLING Kate, and may you have a peaceful journey sweet girl. God bless all of you

  21. 😦 Julie Bryan if you see this message I would tell you be strong. I would not imagine your pain and sadness. Me Myriam and Dylan are with you in thouht and prayers. Good bless y’all we love you xxxx give a kiss at Kate for us. He really don’t have good word to say in this situation 😦 xxxx

    Michael Dylan father

  22. For one mom to another, my heart is breaking for you and your family. from your posts and photos and videos, it looks like Kate knows that you love her so much and she’s probably so glad to have you by her side right now. Sending you my strength

  23. all the best from Hong Kong…we sit on vigil with you and Brian and Jack and Kate…not much to say other than all our fingers are crossed…..

  24. I also very sorry to read this. Wishing you strength and peace. xo

  25. So sorry to hear this Julie. Please accept my best wishes for Kate, and for you and Brian too. Forrest

  26. Our hearts are with you. Kate’s courage, resilience and smiles are beyond compare. Love to all of you. From Liz, Robin and family

  27. I’m so sorry for your family, but I’m so glad that you have a pallitive care team that knows Kate & that you trust to support you during this time.

  28. I heard about your story through a mutual friend Sarah. I know there aren’t many words, if any that can help you right now, but I wanted you to know your family is in my thoughts and prayers today and I’m sure forever. She is a beautiful little girl and will always be remembered.

  29. Julie, I wish you and your family strength and patience. I am praying for Kate.

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