The protracted battle Charly Erpelding had with cancer is coming to an end.
This afternoon we lost our gorgeous baby. Andy and I got to see her off to heaven in our arms reassuring her and letting her know how much we love her, and the unending pride we have in her. She was brave and courageous as she’s always been. Our hearts are shattered, but we do take comfort in the many stories you’ve shared of how she’s touched your lives, just as she has touched ours. Her visitation will be at 2pm – 7pm at the Bettendorf High School Gym on Saturday, October 15th. Her funeral mass will be at 2:00pm on Sunday, October 16th at St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Bettendorf. It was a privilege to share our little girl with you over the past 11 years. Your support and prayers helped our family more then you will ever know. If we could pick how Charly would be remembered it would be below. Her words soak into our soul, I hope they do the same for yours.
Until that perfect day we see you again baby girl, we will love each other and make you proud. We will miss you endlessly, Charly. Love, Will, Mom & Dad – Her Parents wrote on Facebook
Her family reported in a Facebook post that they discovered Charly, 18, was not responding to the chemo and experimental medicine she was taking following a regular CT scan for the clinical study in St. Louis. Her cancer has advanced considerably in a short period of time. The family had to make a difficult choice, and they knew that Charly would make the final decision.
The post stated that she gently communicated to Tara, Will, and me that she battled as long and as hard as she could and that she was now ready and at peace to discontinue any further treatment. She did so without hesitation and with all the grace in the world. “Charly gently explained that it was time to terminate the argument and that she is without a doubt completely at peace with her choice.”
In order to allow her to spend time with her family, friends, cat, and dogs, the Bettendorf family has begun hospice care at home. To show the family how much support they have from the community, the family requests that everyone wear their Cheerin’ for Charly shirts, the color yellow, or Iowa Hawkeyes clothing. It is requested that supporters use the hashtag #CheerinForCharly and share images to Charly’s Facebook page.
When Charly initially faced and defeated Ewing’s Sarcoma, she was eight years old and in second grade at Hoover Elementary in Bettendorf. She experienced a bone cancer recurrence eight years later, in May.