I had the sad task today of announcing the death of one of our AHOPE children. Tilahun Yimer was 12 years old and after a brief illness he succumbed to meningitis. This has been a great shock to the children and staff at AHOPE.
Tilahun was one of the first AHOPE children, arriving in 2001. He was a very fine boy and was loved by everyone. As I was looking through photos from our trip, I thought I had found one of him, so I asked Honeybee and she told me that this was Tilahun and that he is a “very good boy, Mom”. I haven’t told her that her friend died last week. Honestly, I’m not sure that I can bring myself to do it yet. They spent their childhoods together and while most of the children around them died, they survived. God had a plan for them and His plan for Honeybee was to bring her home to us. Why couldn’t His plan have included a family for Tilahun?
I have no answers, but I trust in God’s unfailing love. I have been told that Tilahun knew well that God had a plan for his life, and that he was loved.
Please remember the children and staff at AHOPE. It is very easy for us to think that with good medication, HIV+ children are going to live long and healthy lives, but for those who remain in impoverished countries with limited medical care, that may not be the case. Our efforts for AHOPE are not in vain; there is still so much work to be done.
Two weeks ago we placed an order for more AHOPE bracelets and included Tilahun’s name along with nine others. We had planned to begin offering AHOPE Memorial bracelets in January, never imagining that we would need to offer one sooner. If you would like a memorial bracelet to remember Tilahun Yimer, please visit the AHOPE Store.
We grieve, but not as those who have no hope.
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