Girl lying next to grieving grandfather in heartbreaking photo dies of cancer

Posted at 5:05 PM, Jan 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-16 19:09:56-05

PENSACOLA, Fla. – A young girl, whose battle with cancer was shared widely after a photo with her weeping grandfather was posted on Facebook, has died, according to a statement on the family's tribute page.

"Our sweet Braylynn, our warrior princess, earned her sparkly pink angel wings this evening," the statement read. "Her nickname was Princess Bel and she could light up any room. She loved Hello Kitty and her birthday was December 10. She was a princess with the strength of a warrior and she will NEVER be forgotten."

In December, 5-year-old Braylynn was diagnosed with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), an aggressive and incurable form of brain cancer. The child's family was told she may live for a year, but in early January she entered hospice after experiencing complications.

Braylynn's family posted updates about her fight against cancer on Facebook. But a gut-wrenching photo of Braylynn with her grandfather earlier this month was shared around the world. Braylynn's maternal grandfather suffers from ALS. When he saw Braylynn in the hospital, he broke down.

Parker wrote on Facebook, "In a few days I will have to bury this beautiful little girl. Months, maybe even weeks, later, I will have to bury my father. Both of my heroes, gone, within the same year..."

Braylynn's family has set up a GoFundMe page for medical and funeral expenses that has raised over $75,000. The family will post funeral arrangements once they have been made.