"No kid should have to go through this..." ~ Tyler DeMarco

Son, Brother, Founder – A Painful 8 Years

Tyler P. DeMarco
May 16, 1997 – February 23, 2010

No, time doesn’t heal all wounds!
Written by, Don DeMarco – Tyler’s Dad

On February 23, 2010 our son and brother, Tyler took his last breath. In many ways we died at that very-same moment. In that instant our world exploded and sent us into a void of unfamiliar darkness. That darkness, now our world. A world of anguish. There is no “getting over”, no healing – no, it really doesn’t get any better! We just do our best to live. Today, our loss remains profound.

We move slow and cautiously forward in shuffle steps as if walking on the ice of an expansive body of unfamiliar frozen water. Now, eight years later we still continue to unpredictably wander into areas of brittle ice just waiting to swallow us into the abyss of our reality – ground zero. For the past eight years each new day now demands a reason to face the dawn. We shuffle forward.

Much of our motivation the last eight years has been in our effort to fulfill Tyler’s wish for creating private rooms for all the children treated for cancer at the Children’s Hospital at Albany Medical Center. We began our effort only two months after Tyler’s passing when we created our foundation in his name. We pressed on through our tears and presented our proposal to the administrators at Albany Med. In less than two years we received an official commitment. Several months later architectural blueprints were presented and construction was scheduled to begin in 2013. Construction was concluded in 2015 and the new D7-East wing opened for service. D7-East is now home to 11 private rooms specifically designed for the needs of children being treated for a cancer diagnosis. Tyler’s Wish fulfilled! We continue to shuffle forward!

In addition, Tyler DeMarco Foundation has donated nearly $35,000.00 to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital funding targeted research to cure Medulloblastoma brain cancer.

Currently, Tyler DeMarco Foundation funds an endowment supporting the “Journeys Program” at the Children’s Hospital. Journeys provides comprehensive medical, psychosocial and spiritual palliative care aimed at lessening a child’s pain, providing emotional support to the entire family and helping a child manage distressing symptoms or feelings while focusing on daily life of the best quality.

Grief immobilizes us but it will not avert us from our shuffle forward to continue what Tyler started. Tyler, the boy with an old soul blessed us with his amazing presence for twelve years. In those years Tyler defined who he was not only to us, but also to the world. Tyler is love. Tyler is compassion. Tyler is determination.

In my mind I still see Tyler’s precious face. In my mind I still hear Tyler’s sweet voice. I recall a moment in time from his hospital bed when he looked at his mother and I and said… “No kid should have to go through this.” 

We shuffle forward to continue Tyler’s legacy. We strive to do all we can to prevent another child/family from experiencing what we have suffered and continue to endure. We know full-well that we’ll continue to sink in the abyss of our reality and honestly, its exhausting. But we do it for the love of Tyler… with love, with integrity and in humility.

Tyler –
We love you!
We miss you!
We painfully ache for you!

With All Our Heart – Your family,
Forever 4-Ever

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