CHESAPEAKE, Va. -- Eight-year-old David Spisak, who made headlines after finding his "true love" while battling terminal cancer, has died.
The boy's family posted the following statement in a Facebook group devoted to his life:
"There's never been a morning with such sadness as today and no words will do it justice but I'll try. Our little man's last moments were laying with his mommy and daddy in the middle of the night, with a house full of family, friends and loved ones after days of being surrounded by love. This day was supposed to come about 9-10 months ago but David just wasn't done living yet so he made his own timeline and defied the rules. The almost 7 years of cancer were so very hard but nothing like the last few days. Molly got to say goodbye to her baby brother as soon as it was clear the moment was close and she made sure to set a certain stuffed animal next to him before she left for Grammy's. Yesterday, he was already no longer "David," didn't know who was speaking to him and none of his words made sense; I guess your mind takes you away before your body lets you go, a self-protective thing. But those of us who heard it will never forget the feeling we felt hearing the last clear thing he said yesterday morning, mixed up with the other random comments, was "David wants to be a hero." I'm not ready to say things happen for a reason or a message of rainbows and sunshine just yet, but our baby boy was a fighter, a beautiful soul, a force to be reckoned with and of all the things, he is most definitely a hero. Rest easy sweet boy, you fought an unfair fight with the strength of a thousand soldiers that I could've never done...but you did it with grace; no more struggling. Just rest."
David was diagnosed with cancer when he was two. He had two transplants, including one from his 10-year-old sister. His cancer returned three times.
When he was diagnosed for a fourth time last March, David's parents made the decision to stop treatments and let David enjoy life as an 8-year-old. And that's when David met 7-year-old Ayla, his "true love."
David's mom, Amber, reached out to Ayla's mom, Angela, and together they realized how important the connection was between the two of them.
"She's definitely had an impact on his spirit, and I haven't seen this side of him in a long time," says Amber Spisak, David's mom. "Certainly at 8-years-old, you don’t think that they’ll have a first love or a first kiss or a first date and it was just something that I accepted wasn’t going to happen. But it did."
The first date (and first kiss)
David invited Ayla to go bowling. He gave her a teddy bear and roses and he even got a kiss on the cheek -- his first kiss.
"The best part was watching the way they just needed to be close to each other and their conversation never got shy or quiet. That was all they needed to be happy," Amber says.
How you can help
Adipsy, a local cancer support non-profit who brought meals to David’s mom, is trying to help David's family pay for his funeral. If you'd like to donate, you can visit their website or Facebook page.