Remembering an Angel

kyomi from Meg

Tonight, I remember my niece, Kyomi, who was only with us for four short months. I remember the day she was born and the first time I saw her. She had those big, rosy cheeks like so many Murphy kids. Her kidney problems developed quickly and family visits were limited, so it was a memorable moment for me to hold her for the first time. She had a full head of curly, soft black hair. I remember sitting there and feeling the softness and watching how the touch calmed her as I rocked her in the hospital.

I will never forget the day we lost her. It was a long day with the whole clan in attendance, taking turns in the hospital room. We knew the time was close as we watched her numbers on the monitor slowly deteriorate, yet she was still actively giving “baby kisses.” Remember those open mouthed, wet bits of love? She had one for every member of the family.

As her condition continued to deteriorate and her body slowed down, the staff brought the “death couch” into the room. I HATE that couch! It always represents such a sad time in my mind. We continued to take turns staying with Kyomi’s parents while they remained with their daughter. The final moments haunt me today. She kept trying to give those baby kisses to her parents while she struggled with her last breaths. As a mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, aunt, or uncle, our nature is to protect and help those in our charge. To watch a little one go and lack the ability to help is unbearable.

We survived the weeks that followed with many tears, hugs, prayers, drinks, and bonding at Nannie and Papa’s. Before Kyomi’s condition deteriorated, we made plans to have a fund raiser, hoping to pay for a kidney transplant if she made it a year. We decided to hold the gathering and donate the money to charity. While Kyomi’s parents spent those many months in the hospital with their sick daughter, we noticed the challenges facing parents of sick children. In the hard working, Murphy family way, we wanted to address that issue, so Kyomi’s Gift was formed.

Kyomi’s Gift helps other families who are struggling to make ends meet while attempting to spend time with their sick children. We provide gas cards for those many trips to the hospital, we purchase groceries, we help pay bills, and we provide many other types of assistance. We hold two fund raisers per year, a chili cook-off and children’s games at the Hastings’ Summerfest.

Are you struggling to balance work and caring for a sick child? Check out our organization. Perhaps we can help. You can find more information on our Facebook Page (Kyomi’s Gift).

Want to help remember this angel? Please consider making a donation to our organization. Thank you for your support!

Also, if you are moved by this story, please share Kyomi’s journey via Facebook, Twitter, or other outlets!



  1. I remember the sad times too…at church. It’s just too sad .
    I always visit the Kyomi Booth at summerfest time.

  2. She was such a beautiful baby girl! It was hard…still is and it’s been many years; however, I try to remain focused on the good that came from her short time with us. We have been able to help many families as they have struggled through the financial reality of having a child that needs on-going medical attention. Many families don’t know how long they’ll be able to stay in their home or buy groceries. They’re making tough choices about keeping a job or sitting by their child in the hospital. We do what we can to make sure that they can be by their child’s side when they are most needed and that they have a home come to back to. I can’t even begin to explain how it feels to reach out to these people that so desparately need the support financially and emotionally. Kyomi’s fighting spirit lives on through this foundation.

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