MARQUETTE — Grieving for the loss of a loved one is an difficult and ongoing process, but support from those around us can help make dark days a bit brighter. A Gwinn family who lost their four–year–old daughter unexpectedly one year ago is hoping that they can help others in the way their community helped them.
“Amarah was definitely an angel who lit up everyone’s life. We just want to help other people out the way our community helped us,” said Wayne Filizetti, father of Amarah Filizetti.
Amarah passed away after a tragic accident in September of 2015. In the wake of her passing, Amarah’s family received an outpouring of support from the community to help with the healing process. Now they are hoping to help others who have experienced similar loss find support for everyday activities — things like making meals and doing laundry — that can quickly become difficult or even impossible.
“Grocery shopping is actually really difficult when you’re used to bringing three kids with, and now you only have two,” said Amarah’s mother, Stacey Filizetti. “It makes grocery shopping dreadful. So those types of things I think we can help on a longer term basis.”
The family’s newly–formed non–profit group is called Amarah’s Light. The group’s first event — Amarah’s Princess Parade — is being held Saturday at Presque Isle in Marquette. The theme of the day of family fun is a result of Amarah’s penchant for royal attire.
“She slept in her princess dress. She wore it to the pool. She just — that was her thing, is her princess dresses, and it made her happy,” Stacey added.
The ultimate goal of the event is to begin raising funds to provide that extra support for those dealing with grief.
“I haven’t found that it’s gotten easier,” said Stacey, “but you can practice, and seek out help, and don’t be ashamed to.”
“I know that your world has come to an end. I understand that. I know when you walk out the door, everything is different and nothing makes sense. So I get that completely,” said Wayne, “and what we’re going to try to do is help them make the world make sense again. There is no step one, step two, step three. There is no guideline to recovering from something like this, so we’re just going to help them when they need it.”
Registration for Amarah’s Princess Parade starts at 9:00 a.m. with the walk following at 10:00 a.m. Games, bounce houses, and princess appearances will all be part of the event. Ice cream and chocolate milk are being provided by Jilbert’s Dairy.
[Photo courtesy Stacey & Wayne Filizetti]