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Tuesday, August 9, 2016

One Child's Story of Hardship and Hope

Lilly and her mother, Susan. Provided. 

Everyone faces hardships in their life, but last February one Fort Thomas child faced one of the worst.

Lilly Anna had recently turned nine-years-old and was in a talent show. Her mother, Susan, was not feeling well and couldn't take her. She called a friend and asked her to pick Lilly up and then fell asleep on the couch. Lilly tried to wake her mom to tell her goodbye, but she seemed to be in a deep sleep so Lilly went on to the talent show.

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When Susan's fiancee came home from work, she was unresponsive. He called the paramedics, but it was too late. At only 41, Susan had passed away.

Jami Oldendick Anna, Lilly's stepmother, said, "Susan thought she had the flu. She was congested in her chest, weak, and achy. After we received the autopsy results, they found Susan had died of a heart attack."

Susan wasn't overweight, had quit smoking over a year ago, and was a healthy eater. She had a job she loved, had just bought a house, and was engaged to be married. But recently she hadn't been feeling well. Many women don't realize the signs of a heart attack can be very different for women than they are for men.

Susan hadn't complained about chest pains, tightening in the chest, or pain in her left arm that is typically associated with heart attacks. Some women do experience chest pain, but may experience it differently than men. They may also have pain in their arms(s), back, neck, or jaw and this is more common for women than for men. Stomach pain that is frequently associated with the flu is also common. Other symptoms are shortness of breath, nausea, light-headedness, breaking out in a cold nervous sweat, and extreme fatigue.

Jami worries how this tragic event may have affected Lilly, but for now Lilly is doing well. According to Jami, "Lilly is a sweet, outgoing, wonderful little girl with a heart of gold. She never meets a stranger and always has a smile on her face."

Jami is an insurance agent and said, "Susan was a responsible mother. She had a life insurance policy in place for Lilly in the event something like this should happen."

Despite the tragedy she has already seen in her life, Jami believes Lilly has a bright future full of hope.

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