July 3, 2014 – March 6, 2020
Vivian Rose was born on July 3, 2014 to her parents, Simon and Katie Weaver. Her family joyfully celebrated her birth, the fulfillment of prayers and excited anticipation. Her parents led her on a life of fun and adventure, heading to the Oregon coast the day after her birth to celebrate the 4th of July with family. She was always up for experiences, whether simple visits to the park, scouring the library for good books, enjoying overnights with family and friends at a young age, staying in hotels or flying on planes. Her favorite destinations included Disney World (her Make-A-Wish destination) and Hawaii. Near the end of her life Vivian continued to take joy in even short outings, anything that got her outside and on the move. In her final weeks she enjoyed browsing downtown Hood River, shopping at the grocery store, stopping for treats at the bakery and a quick trip to the zoo one week before she passed.
Vivian developed into a joyful, bright, effervescent personality that never ceased to warm the hearts of those around her. Countless people commented on this, describing her as a bright light and a magical presence. Vivian loved ballet, horses, school, books, princesses, her friends, organizing, and the color pink.
Vivian was a hard worker who took instruction well. As a willing pupil her parents loved teaching her new things, and her curiosity enabled her to take interest in just about everything. Over the years Vivian worked on engines in their shop, cooked extensively with her mother, learned to ski, hunted deer and elk, helped build her treehouse, crafted just about everything and she loved stomping barefoot in the garden. She was easily entertained. Vivian’s imagination flourished with her father’s storytelling and drives in the car were never complete without a storytelling. Her appetite for reading books was inexhaustible.
After two-and-a-half years at Little Oak Montessori, Vivian enrolled in Kindergarten at Whitson Elementary School in September of 2019. She loved her classmates, her teacher and the hustle and bustle of the classroom. Even as her illness progressed Vivian participated in school. Simon and Katie remain appreciative for the resources and help the school and staff provided to make Vivian feel included and to accommodate her needs. Vivian visited her classroom for the last time 4 days before her passing, her classmates surrounding her wheelchair, showing her their artwork and tenderly touching Vivian as they greeted her.
Vivian was an old soul. She particularly loved her extended family and her close girlfriends, especially her best friend Violet and her cousins. Her relationships showed maturity beyond her years. However, nothing illustrated her maturity, fortitude and character more than her response to her diagnosis of DIPG (diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma) on February 1, 2018. DIPG is an inoperable and incurable brain tumor with an average survival of 9 months. Despite the progressive nature of this disease, Vivian never complained. Vivian insisted upon climbing onto the radiation table independently before treatments. When she began to fall for lack of balance, she would struggle back to her feet declaring, “I’m ok!” She endured IV placements, surgeries, long days of chemotherapy and repeated hospital visits, but she cherished spending the day with Mama or Papa on these many occasions. Before painful procedures Vivian and her parents would hold each other, say a quick prayer, and Vivian would then comply with the task at hand. She never created a scene, never screamed or yelled or refused despite her dislike of the process.
Vivian defied the odds and for more than two years her parents cared for Vivian, investigating all available treatment options and seeking out promising therapies and cutting-edge interventions at home and abroad. Following Vivian’s diagnosis they enlisted an army of people to pray for Vivian and the other children affected by this disease. The Weavers became keenly aware of the other families and children suffering from this disease and they established the Vivian Rose Weaver Defeat DIPG Foundation. This Foundation seeks to raise money for DIPG research with the hopes that, some day, a cure will be found. DIPG remains the deadliest of ALL childhood cancers and nearly every day one child in the United States is diagnosed with DIPG and another child dies from it. Vivian understood her parents’ efforts, she wanted to help and she expressed a hope that other children with DIPG would not have to visit the hospital as much as she had.
Simon and Katie remain deeply thankful to God for the gift and blessing of Vivian’s life, her love for Jesus, and His presence and faithfulness throughout.
Our sweet Vivian Rose Weaver went to be with her loving Heavenly Father on March 6, 2020, at her home in Husum, Washington, while snuggled between her Mama and Papa. She is now resting in the arms of her Lord & Savior, Jesus Christ. Vivian is survived by her parents, Simon and Katie (McKinney) Weaver and her sister, Lucie Beatrice Weaver, affectionately nicknamed, Lulu Bea, by Vivian. She is also survived by her paternal grandparents, Bob & Karen Weaver, her maternal grandparents, Peter & Bea Plath, Rus & Barb McKinney, her aunts and uncles, Marc & Nicolai (Weaver) Stromvig, Jonah & Grace Weaver, David & Amanda McKinney, Mike & Amy McKinney, Ryan & Sarah McKinney, James & Alex McKinney, Megan McKinney, Dan & Bri Plath, Jacob & Leslie (Plath) Johnson, and Katy Plath. She was loved by all her many cousins, Caitlin, Duke, Joey, Lauren, Hudson, Helen, Oliver & Gavin McKinney & Brady, Kristen & Landon Peterson, Davis, Bennet & Graham Plath, Charlie & Grady Johnson, Cameron (Adeline), Alexandria (Remy), Riley & Micah Stromvig, Tayo Weaver. She was preceded in death by her cousin, Chase Thomas McKinney, and Aunt Sarah Louise McKinney.
In lieu of flowers or gifts, the Weaver family asks that you consider a tax deductible donation in her honor, to fund a cure for DIPG, to Vivian Rose Weaver Defeat DIPG Foundation. Checks can be mailed to P.O. Box 239, Husum, WA 98623. 100% goes to DIPG research.
Vivian’s memorial scheduled for March 14 had to be postponed due to concerns with the coronavirus and will be rescheduled, hopefully before the summer.