Teen in hospital for sledding injury dies after dad died visiting her, Ohio mom says

Chacour Koop
·2 min read

Katie Dougherty Zuercher has a vision of her husband waiting for their daughter in heaven.

“She used to wait on the front porch for him to arrive home from work to greet him with the biggest hug before he could even get in the house,” the Ohio mom said in a Facebook post. “I imagine he is waiting for her now with the same eager anticipation.”

Last weekend, Dougherty Zuercher’s 14-year-old daughter, Eirelyn, was seriously injured in a sledding accident at a park in Hinckley, Ohio, Cleveland.com reported.

Her father, Jared, suffered a fatal heart attack as they arrived at a Cleveland hospital emergency room, Dougherty Zuercher said.

“Her daddy got to heaven just before she did, just like he got to the finish line first in every Mario Kart game they ever played together,” Dougherty Zuercher posted on Facebook.

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Eirelyn suffered a “detrimental brain injury” and remained on life support while the hospital searched for organ donor recipients, Dougherty Zuercher said.

“Waiting for the inevitable end is emotional and exhausting, but my hope is that a few terrible days for my family will mean a brighter future for other families who will benefit from her healthy organs,” she posted on Facebook.

On Wednesday, Eirelyn was removed from life support.

“Last night Eirelyn saved the world for five individuals,” Dougherty Zuercher posted on Facebook. “Her spirit lives on through the gift of organ donation.”

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Eirelyn attended Spring Garden Waldorf School in Copley, WEWS reported.

“Eirelyn was a deeply kind and loving person, an incredible big sister, a talented artist, and a treasured student in our school,” the school said in a statement to WEWS. “Our hearts ache for (the) Zuercher family, Eirelyn’s peers and teachers, and the entire Spring Garden community as we grieve the loss of a child and her father who both left us far too young.”

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