Our Stories

scripture Matthew 19:14This section is open to loving parents, who have chosen to share their child’s story. As you will experience, each story is a touching memory of a child – a sweet angel – whose life, no matter how short, had purpose and continues to serve that purpose through remembrances like those shared here.

To share your story and be featured in this section, we ask that you purchase a Memorial Butterfly to honor your child. You may complete our online form or email us your story to be featured.

Click here to submit your child’s story.

  • The Story of Zack Thompson

    Zack ThompsonCharles Zachary Thompson May 02, 1994 – November 08, 2013

    Zack was the second of our three sons, sandwiched in between Ben (oldest) and Hunter (youngest), which made him that typical middle child. Need I say more? Typical to a middle child, he made us laugh, cry and often wonder about our parenting skills. Our son passed away of unknown causes at the tender age of 19. Although, his life was short, he knew who he was and understood the importance of being honest and true to yourself­–no matter what others might say.

    Zack never wanted to be or do something that wasn’t him. He moved along a path that made him happy, NEVER…EVER… worrying about so called “missed opportunities.” He always marched to the beat of his own drummer and respected the rights of others to do the same. Zack loved his family and friends deeply and never had an unkind word to share. He was laid back, kind, selfless, compassionate and blessed with a quick wit and great dimples accompanied by a smile that would light up a room. He was a natural athlete and participated in soccer, basketball, baseball and football…all the typical sports Coppell has to offer. He particularly loved baseball, and in Zack fashion could amaze you at times with the athletic ability you just can’t teach. He also loved computer online gaming and, in particular, loved to play Magic. Today, tomorrow and forever, his family and friends will love him deeply. We are all inspired and challenged to live life as he did…accepting others as they are, giving often and freely and following your own path.

    • The Story of the Vialpando Babies

      baby angelsThe Vialpando Twins January 16, 2014

      My wife and I have been trying to have children for quite some time. After four years of doctor visits, fertility tricks, operations and other medical procedures, she tells me one day that she has a present in the kitchen for me. After looking around, I finally open the oven door to find two buns in there. Yes, it’s a metaphor: she’s pregnant with twins! My elation about this is caught on her smart phone and she sends the little movie out to all of our family and friends who share in our joy. Life is wonderful.

      Our happiness turns to concern almost right away as she has a near miscarriage within the first 5 weeks of pregnancy. The crisis seemingly over, she then goes into complications at 18 weeks. I stay home with her and care for her night and day for the next 5 weeks. I administer special medicines and other techniques the doctors prescribe, as we both try desperately to keep our babies from coming too early.

      It doesn’t work.

      I’m at my wife’s side holding her hand when my daughter is born at 23 weeks. My little girl never opens her tiny eyes, never takes one breath. Her little heart stops beating minutes after she is born with nothing the doctors can do. My son comes 40 minutes after my daughter. He actually lasts less time than she does. I still can’t shake the picture from my mind of my wife holding her dying babies in her arms while still in the hospital bed as we both are consumed with grief, the likes of which I have never experienced in my life. I simply wanted to die myself at that moment, the weight of my own body too much to bear as I crumple in sorrow.

      I then try to be strong for my wife while taking care of the necessary funeral arrangements, bills and other issues while she convalesces at home. But I also realize that I need to be weak in our grief, so that we can heal. My wife and I are still working through this grief, doing it together, experiencing it thoroughly and completely. I didn’t think it possible, but I find that I love my wife even more now than I did when we got married.

      Each day it becomes easier to begin to move my children from my head, where I think about them every day, and into my heart. That’s where I will keep the two children I wanted so much, the two little babies I loved while still in the womb. I am slowly adjusting to the loss of my son and daughter, children that I only had for minutes on this planet. I am comforted with the certainty that I will meet them someday at God’s feet.

      That is when I will be able to tell them face to face “Daddy loves you.”

      • The Story of Alana Menezes

        Alana MenezesAlana Frances Menezes October 4, 2006 – September 26, 2013

        Alana Frances Menezes was born on October 4, 2006 at what was then known as Trinity Medical Center in Carrollton, Texas. She was the first child of Julie and Ken Menezes, residents of Coppell, Texas. Two years later Alana would be joined by her sister Amelia Marie. Alana was baptized into the catholic faith at St. Ann’s Catholic Church in Coppell when she was three months old. She was a second grader at Denton Creek Elementary school in Coppell when she suddenly and unexpectedly passed away on September 26, 2013, a week shy of her seventh birthday. She was at home watching TV on the couch, when she became unresponsive late in the afternoon. She was having symptoms of common cold and a slight fever that day.

        Alana was a bright, lively and caring girl. She loved everybody around her and was always happy and joyful. She gave the best hugs. She loved to travel. She was passionate about swimming. She was learning to play the piano and was taking art classes. She would often say that she wanted to be an artist. She loved the simple pleasures of life, home cooked meals and the presence of her family at home. She had an incredible passion for reading, she would teach and read to her collection of soft toys. She would role play with her younger sister. As she was preparing for her first holy communion, she was learning more about God and Jesus and the meaning of love. That was influencing her thoughts which manifested in her art work. There was never a dull moment around her.

        Her life on earth has left an indelible impression around those who knew her. She has taught her family a deeper meaning of love. Our friends, co-workers and companies have donated funds towards the Coppell public library in honor of Alana. As the library embarks on its expansion project, the funds will be used to improve the children’s area. This will be her lasting legacy.

        Shortly after Alana passed away, friends, family members, coworkers and companies came together to donate funds that could be used to keep Alana’s memory alive for years to come. The amount raised was donated to the Coppell public library to support the reconstruction of the children’s area. The library itself was undergoing a significant redevelopment project to improve the interior and exterior to cater to the growing and changing needs of the local population and students. The library and the city of Coppell were determined to use the donated funds in a manner that would not only enhance the children’s area but also feature art work that would remember Alana in a special way.
        Coppell resident Tony Blaas of the library’s design team at Hidell Associates Architects and a design company called Studio Arts Desire worked with the family to create the butterfly-filled Alana’s Garden mural. Alana loved butterflies with the Monarch being her favorite. The mural done by an Arkansas artist is a print graphic applied to the glass. It also includes acrylic folded butterflies to add a three dimensional aspect. The artwork was specifically designed to reflect Alana’s joy of life and the impact she had on those around her. It represents the image of a girl who is transforming things that are dull and grey to colorful and vibrant as she passes by. In addition to the mural, the donations paid for the interactives in the toddler area, including the interactive kiosk, the discovery table and stools, the play kitchen and the puppet theater. It also paid for the children’s tables and chairs in the story time room.
        Special thanks to Coppell library Director, Vicki Chiavetta for her kindness, consideration and compassion throughout this project. Also, architect Tony Blaas, Mayor Karen Hunt and Freda Vaughn of Studio Arts Design were instrumental in taking a personal interest in making the project a success.
        A big thank you to all donors, and American Airlines’ executives, Bev Goulet and Peter Warlick for helping raise funds that made this lasting memory of Alana possible.

        • The Story of Jacob Logan

          jacobfootballfamilyJacob Eli Logan March 28, 1995 – October 14, 2012

          October 14, 2012 was the worst day of my life.  It was the day I received a frantic phone call from my wife at approximately 1:30 in the afternoon informing me my 17 year old son Jacob Logan was missing after jumping off a cliff at Possum Kingdom Lake.  It was the call no parent ever anticipates.  I immediately asked God to protect my son and not to let it be true.  It was true and so began the nightmare that seemingly will never end.  For on that date, my life changed forever.

          The kind of hurt you feel after losing Jacob is something one cannot really explain unless you have experienced the death of one so close to you.  Jacob was a humble child that wanted not only to make us proud of him, but everyone in our community.  He was always looking forward to the next good thing he could achieve and setting goals and standards that were truly off the charts for one so young.  Leading by example of good deeds and hard work were the start of the groundwork Jacob laid each day.

          Our family’s focus is keeping these good deeds alive through Jacob’s death.  My wife Mona and daughter Jordan organized a trip to Africa through an organization called Family Legacy.  This was really the beginning of the healing process in that we saw so many children that were less fortunate than we had ever imagined.  We thought we were going to Africa to aid the children; little did we know, they would open our eyes and begin to heal our hearts.

          Since that trip, we have organized The Jacob Logan Run and raised over 120 thousand dollars to complete the first phase of Jacob’s Life Vision Home.  This will provide teenagers who are completing high school and preparing for higher education or the job market an outlet to achieve the skills they need to be successful in their endeavors.  This has grown much larger than we imagined and we are so excited to see how Jacob’s life can influence the future.

          There is not a day that passes that we do not think about Jacob.  He was such an energetic kid that was very likable by all.  He never met a stranger.  We hope we can continue to use Jacob’s life as a legacy for young men who are seeking the right path for their future.

          Forever in Faith and Missing our adorable son,
          The Logans

          • The Story of Jha'Kyric

            Jha'Kyric NixonFriday, July 29th started out like a regular summer day. Plenty of sunshine and Texas heat filled the air, so the need to cool off came without hesitation. My children and I eagerly packed up our cooler and headed to Hurricane Harbor to enjoy some time in the water. As the day came to an end, we drove home and settled in after showers. I sat on the edge of my bed, reminded of the day, and I was grateful we had made it home safely. It was kind of late in the evening, so I was surprised when my phone began to ring; I answered it, expecting to hear my mother’s voice. The words that came from the other end of the line sometimes haunt me to this day, because I can still hear them like a whisper in my ear, just as I did the day they were spoken to me. “Hey Tina, how are you doing? I am calling to tell you that Jha’Kyric was in an accident and he didn’t make it.” More words, then questions, the conversation ends, I hear a dial tone, a sinking feeling, and then silent tears. I hear the voice of my children asking, “Mama what’s wrong”? I quietly answer, “Jha’Kyric is gone”. More crying, disbelief, and now confusion: He drowned? How could he drown, when did this happen? Where is he now? Where is Mama? Is she okay? Has someone called Dad? How could he drown, he knew how to swim, he’s been to the lake several times! I hate that lake!

            I thought about my father, a Vietnam Veteran, who served in the Vietnam War. I knew he was strong, but no type of physical or mental training could prepare a parent for the loss of their child. My mother had worked hard all her life. She courageously left home at a very young age to make a better life for herself and her siblings. Even after obtaining a better life, a life in which she was blessed to raise five children, in one night, without any warning, the youngest, her baby, had suddenly been taken away.

            I do not know all the facts, but I do know that he was at a birthday party enjoying the lake, when some type of trouble occurred in the water. He yelled for help and went under. A dive team found him approximately 30 minutes later, he was rushed to the local hospital by ambulance, and later he was pronounced dead. I never made it to the hospital. I never had the opportunity to be by his side, pray for him, hope for the best, or even say goodbye, and that still hurts me to this day. Although, I wasn’t there, my mother, brother, and some of Jha’Kyric’s friends were there; praying and hoping for a positive outcome. Unfortunately, he would never return to us in the physical form.

            July 29, 2011 will always be a day my family and I will remember, because it was the day, my baby brother Jha’Kyric Nixon returned home. Not to his home in Coppell, but his home above. He was a fun, free spirited young man, who, we found out later, was loved by hundreds, no thousands, maybe millions. He was called, “Celeb”. Short for celebrity and that he was. Many have read the articles about the thousands of people who attended his “homegoing” services. Many do not know the young man, who at times could be very blunt and straightforward, also had a very big heart and truly cared for his friends and family. At times he could be so honest in how he felt about a person, that it might spark a feud, to only be calmed later by a friendly jester.

            Jha’Kyric knew how to grab a person’s attention by either making you laugh, yell, or shout. By the time he finished his initiation, you couldn’t stand him, but you found yourself loving him. He was very unique, and he didn’t believe in hanging with one group of people, he mixed and mingled with everyone. He had so much love to share with the world and at times I feel as if he knew his time here was limited. He took advantage of every opportunity to find more lives to touch. To make such an impact at 17 years old is almost unheard and that is why I will always admire and respect him.

            Jha’Kyric was also an avid basketball player and he had dreams to play basketball in college. One of the highlights of his life was when he and my mom traveled to Milwaukee to attend the Brandon Jennings basketball camp. A month before his death, he attend the Hoop Mountain Basketball Camp at the University of Oklahoma where he received many accolades and praise for his performance. I remember dropping him off and standing in his assigned dorm room with him. I told him I would not embarrass him by taking pictures now, but the day we drop him off for college, we will all be there to embarrass him. That day would never come for him, but it has come for 19 students in the D/FW metroplex. Our family created a scholarship in his memory; to help high school seniors, with a financial need, pursue a higher education. These students have received not just a scholarship, but hope for a brighter future.

            Jha’Kyric was a son, brother, nephew, cousin, friend, and of course a “celebrity”. Above all those things, he was a child of God, whose work on this earth was done. Like a caterpillar preparing to transition into a butterfly, Jha’Kyric shed his earthly body, transformed, and ascended into the heavens.

            If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to the scholarship fund, please send a donation to Irving Bible Church, attention: Tommy Tucker. In the memo please reference the Jha’Kyric Nixon scholarship. For more information about the scholarship and scholarship winners please go to: https://sites.google.com/site/thejhakyricnixonscholarship/ or follow us on twitter @jnixonscholars. Our family would like to thank everyone for the generous donations, words of encouragement, and prayers that we have received and continue to receive since Jha’Kyric’s passing.


            • The Story of Aaron Gower

              0068INFORMATION_STRIP_ON__TAG      88"F  07/18/12 01:46 PM  MYCAMERA Aaron Gower August 20, 1990 – February 6, 2013
              Aaron was our Shining Star. He passed away at the age of 22 in a mental health facility on February 6, 2013 in Denton, Texas. Aaron was a quiet, gentle soul, never talking about others or being judgmental. He had completed 2 years at NCTC in Corinth, Texas. Aaron was on the Dean’s List and a member of Phi Theta Kappa. He attended EMS school in Love County Oklahoma, but did not get a chance to take the final test. We miss him each and every day. To me Aaron is and always will be irreplaceable. He was our baby boy even though he was a young man. His horse Maggie still looks inside the glass door from the porch in Oklahoma looking for Aaron. I know someone as good as Aaron is in heaven now with Jesus. He attended LHS and The Colony schools. We find as the Christmas Holiday approaches, we want to have him here to open those presents he loved and to be with the family having turkey and dressing. Aaron was very smart, loving, gentle and kind. He had such a big heart. Aaron was an organ donor unknown to his family. Four people received his organs. We have yet to meet them. We wish we could tell them about what an amazing young man he was and is.