"Threads of Love" Donor Memorial Quilt: Quilt 45
Brian Joseph Elliott
Brian Joseph Elliott 1998-2012
It all started on June 29, 1998. My son, Brian Joseph Elliot was born. He was a beautiful baby with a happy disposition. Growing up, Brian would say things that other kids his age wouldn’t. I would ALWAYS hear “you won’t believe what Ryan said!” from parents and teachers alike. Sometimes when you would talk to Brian, you would forget you were talking to a child! He could hold an intelligent conversation with adults very easily. He was also good at arguing, one of his nicknames at school was “Lawyer”, because of his ability to persuade people to see things from his point of view. I’ve always thought of Brian as an “Old Soul.” The part about that is, old souls don’t live long, so I was hoping I was wrong.
Brian growing up was GREAT! He was always fun to be around, and our neighbors simply adored him. He would go around the neighborhood and say hello and ask how they were. He would also help our elderly neighbors by walking their dogs or shoveling their walk. He treated younger children with care. He treated them like they were his own younger brother or sister. He was very empathic to other peoples problems and would really want to help them fix it if he could.
His FAVORITE band EVER is the Beatles. He couldn’t get enough of it. Brian and his father would watch… over and over and over again, the anthologies, Concert for George, and ANYTHING Beatles together. His favorite song by The Beatles is “In my Life.”
Brian was diagnosed with Epilepsy in first grade. He was on medication until his life ending seizure had taken him. He did not…would not let this illness keep him from enjoying life! He LOVED playing baseball, hockey, football (to a degree), and riding his bike. My eldest son, Brian J Elliot had a S.U.D.E.P. Seizure on July 20, 2012. Two of my sons friends came into our house minutes after he had his seizure, called 911, my son was not breathing. My sons friend called me after the paramedics got there. Needless to say I was devastated and rushed to the hospital. The 2 boys that found my son were given awards by the township for what they did… I made sure they did because if they didn’t him when they did, I wouldn’t have had the 5 days I had w/ him in the hospital, AND Brian wouldn’t have been able to donate his organs, he lives on in four people so far! Another “coincidence” is that one of the EMT’s that worked on my son, was his step-brother-in-law! He didn’t recognize him at the time which was a blessing, all of the EMT’s and policeman worked VERY hard and were able to get my sons heart beating, but he was already gone.
The outpour of empathy and compassion that I witnessed after this horrible news, blew me away! I have never been on this side, of this kind of sorrow, and never experienced this kind of sincere empathy and compassion before, so it was a little bit of shock… but a GOOD shock. I was deeply moved by the actions of my family, neighbors, co-workers, and community! They had all come together to honor my son, which is EVERYTHING when you can do no more. During this time, many people approached me w/ stories about Brian that I never heard before. I was in awe of all the stories. These are things Brian did, because it was the way he was. He didn’t do it for the acknowledgment or praise. He did it because he was a kindhearted soul.
900 people came to Brian’s viewing, so many kids…crying. I comforted them the best I could, which distracted me from my own sorrow, for a short time. His funeral was packed. He had a police escort me from the funeral home, to the church, then after the funeral, from the church to the cemetery. 3 police stations were involved. Our police chief, Mike Chittwood, arranged all of this for my son, because of the kind of young man Brian was to our community.
There is one moment I would like to share that will tell you, in a nutshell, what kind of young man my Brian was:
We were on vacation in Williamsburg, VA. We went to Busch Gardens for some fun w/ Brian and Kevin. Brian wanted to go on this HUGE roller-coaster, and I am the only one in the family who would even consider going on this with him. I Love Roller-coasters, but this ride was bigger than I am used to.
Brian wanted to sit in 1st car, and I didn’t! he insisted, and I said to him “If I die, I want blue roses like that song.” He joked with me and said “ok.” Well I went in the 1st car, and this ride stops and dangles you at the top of the highest hill. During that moment, when we were in the air, screaming at the top of his lungs … YEAH!!! I was looking at him and decided “I am NOT going to close my eyes this time!” I didn’t close my eyes, I left them open and started to scream. For the first time in my life, I LIVED! He showed me how to live in the moment then. I will NEVER EVER forget that! That is why I put blue roses in his casket.
My son is gone, but will NEVER be forgotten! He will continue to be an example of what a young man should be like, for the children in my community that knew him, and his kind ways.
Thank you so much for your support, Sincerely, the Elliot Family