The baby that stole hearts around the world after he was born without a nose, has now sadly died at only two years old.
Eli Thompson was born without a nasal passages or sinus cavities It is a rare condition called arhinia that affects only one in 197 million births. On Saturday 3rd June, his father Jeremy Finch announced that his son Eli had just passed away at Springhill Medical Centre, Mobile, Alabama.
At just five five days old, he had to have a tracheotomy to provide breathing support. Only three months before he was pronounced dead, he celebrated his second birthday on March 4th.
The tiny Eli was known as the “miracle” baby and had amounts of love and support heaped on him as people across the globe heard about his condition.
His dad described him as “very, very bright and happy, always smiling and giving everybody fist bumps.”
He also added:
“He touched a lot of people’s lives. A lot of people cared about him.”
Jeremy explained how his son used baby sign language to communicate and that his favorite sign was “cookie.” He used the sign every morning to get his favorite treat.
He also won the “Cookie Monster Award” from his daycare centre.
His dad wrote a passage to Facebook to announce his death:
“We lost our little buddy last night. I’ll never be able to make sense of why this happened, and this will hurt deeply for a long time. But I’m so blessed to have had this beautiful boy in my life!
“He finished his race a lot earlier than we would have liked, but it was God’s time to bring him back home. I’ll forever look forward to seeing him at the gates of Heaven waiting on me to give me another one of his famous fist bumps!
“I love you little man. Rest in peace with my Father.”
Eli met a two-and-a-half year old Tessa who was also born with arhinia before he died.
Tessa’s mum said:
“To get to introduce Tessa to Eli was like a dream come true and it meant the world to us to sit and talk with his family. Tessa was totally taken with Eli and hugged him and stroked his head. Watching Eli gaze up at her was too precious for words.”
His funeral took place at the Fountain of Life Church.
Our thoughts are with his family.