5-year-old gets sick after Disney birthday trip: on her death bed, mom realizes the heartbreaking reality

To visit Disney World is something most children long for, especially in the USA.

The giant playground is a fairy-tale world where everyday life is forgotten and children get the chance to enter a magical kingdom.

When 5-year-old Holly was taken to Disney World to celebrate her birthday, she was of course overjoyed. Holly and her family spent the weekend celebrating and Holly enjoyed a princess makeover and being Princess Ariel for the day. Unfortunately that would be the last vacation Holly would enjoy with her family after tragedy hit.




5-year-old Scarlett Middleton, from Florida, got to live out her dreams when she celebrated her birthday at  Disney World.

The little girl had a magical day and celebrated in great style, she even got to dress up as Princess Ariel from the movie “The Little Mermaid”.


Unfortunately, that would be the last time Scarlett got to laugh and enjoy herself as her and her family’s dream turned into a tragic nightmare.

“We came home from Disney Springs and the following evening she threw up a little and had a fever. On day two of having an upset stomach and fever, I took her to her doctor,” Mom Holly told Love What Matters .


Scarlett was so weak she had to be carried into the doctor’s office. But after being examined little Scarlett and her family were told she had a stomach virus and was sent home with Zofran, a drug used to treat nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy, radiation therapy or surgery.

But 20 hours later Scarlett was dead.

Facebook/Scarlett’s Sunshine

Mom Holly said: “I called the ambulance when I thought something wasn’t right. She died in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Thankfully, I was with her.”

The children’s hospital tried to revive Scarlett for an hour, but her heart never started again.

“I had to make the choice if they should continue, or as they suggested, ‘let her go.’ I said the hardest word I’ve ever had to say: ‘okay.’”

Facebook / Scarlett’s Sunshine

As the family let little Scarlett go, Holly sang:

“You are my sunshine, my only sunshine
You make me happy when skies are gray
You’ll never know dear, how much I love you
Please do not take away my sunshine away.”

Facebook / Holly Middleton

“In that moment I refused to let her light stop shining. I’d have to find a way to keep her light alive,” Holly said.

In the hours that followed the tragedy Holly was forced to deliver the dreadful news to her friends and family. 

All of them reacted in horror; our pastors came to her death bed and prayed with us, Holly said.

“We spent around 10 hours holding her lifeless, yet still beautiful body in the ER, just trying to memorize her every detail and hug her enough to last a lifetime. I combed her hair out of her eyes the ways she did for me and I cleaned her up the way I had done hundreds of times before. I knew she was in Heaven with Jesus.”

Facebook/Scarlett’s Sunshine

I cannot begin to imagine the pain this family had to endure and the shock of it all.

The family still don’t know how she died. The hospital told her it was Sepsis, a life-threatening condition that occurs when the immune system reacts to an infection in the body.

But they don’t know how Scarlett got it or why it affected her so rapidly.

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"We had just been to Disney celebrating her birthday. She got a magical princess makeover. Little did we know she was practicing to be a Princess in Heaven a few days later. She threw up and had a fever. I took her to her doctor. She was so lethargic. We were told it is just a stomach virus – 20 hours later she was dead.” Mom's incredibly emotional story on LoveWhatMatters.com ❤️ . . . #LoveWhatMatters #Family #Love #InstaLove #LoveWins #LoveAlwaysWins #BelieveInLove #CherishEveryMoment #LoveEachOther #Kindness #Hope #ScarlettsSunshine #ActOfKindness #Princess #Heaven #Faith #Believe #Compassion #FindYourJoy #Disney #ShowLove #BeKind #SmallActs #AlwaysLove #LoveAlways #ChooseLove #SpreadLove #LoveMore #MomLife #Motherhood ❤️

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However, until the autopsy is complete, there are many questions left unanswered – to the great despair of the family.

To help her get through such painful grief, her mother started a charity called  Scarlett’s Sunshine.  where flowers, which Scarlett loved to pick and give to her mom, are given out randomly to people who need them most; people who need that bit of sunshine in their life.  A GoFundMe page has helped this dream become a reality.

Holly adds: “If I run out of funds, you’ll find me once a week at the grocery store, picking up a bouquet to give away in her name, just to see Scarlett’s sunshine again.”

Facebook/Scarlett’s Sunshine

The charity is already helped to spread sunshine, just as Scarlett did during her short but precious life.

“I received Scarlett’s flower last Wednesday. My mom is seriously ill… You indeed gave me sunshine at that moment,” writes a grateful lady on the charity’s Facebook page.

Even though this child’s death is such a tragedy, it’s inspiring to see her mom lifting others despite her overwhelming sadness.

Scarlett’s light shines on each time a flower is given in the name of the charity she inspired.

Facebook/Scarlett’s Sunshine

Like and share; help Scarlett’s memory live on and help send strength to the family. 

Rest in peace little angel!