4-year-old Virginia Rose loses battle with cancer

Updated: Dec. 29, 2015 at 4:31 PM EST
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CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A child who inspired a Chesterfield neighborhood lost her battle with cancer on Tuesday morning.

"Virginia Rose went to be with Jesus this morning just after 9AM. She was in the arms of her mother and father as she took her last breath here on this Earth," The Vandermark family posted on Facebook. "It was a blessing for her to be at home in her room where she was very comfortable, no pain or anxiety as she rested. We are grateful to all our family and the support, strength, love, from the community poured out to our family these last 9 months."

The family asked for privacy as they say their farewells and said it would release details on a celebration ceremony soon.

Virginia's struggle with terminal cancer inspired her Midlothian neighborhood to create a special early Christmas celebration in her honor. Doctors didn't think she would make it to Christmas. She managed to live until Dec. 29, proving them wrong as she had before.

Ed and Renee Trivisonno created the special celebration after following Virginia's trip home from St. Jude, rallying family, collecting gifts and decking out Santa's sleigh to bring Christmas to Virginia Rose.

The Vandermarks noticed a rash on their daughter in the spring leading to a diagnosis of high risk acute Myeloid Leukemia. After months of treatment at St. Jude and exhausting every medical option, doctors couldn't get rid of her cancer. Even when Virginia's brother was identified as a perfect match for a donor, the doctors didn't believe that she would make it through the bone marrow transplant. If she did, there was a chance the cancer could come right back.

Instead, she came home in November in a bittersweet homecoming. Community members and the family's church worked to ready the Vandermark home, replacing the roof, putting in new windows and planting 1,000 daffodils for her to bloom in the spring.

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