In Loving Memory of
Nicholas E. Donley
September 20, 1985 - June 30, 2001
My favorite picture, a peace sign over his heart. Truly no words to explain...
A friend sent me this picture and it looks just like Nick.
I wanted to use it in the Web Page
I think it is beautiful.
These two special gifts for Angel Nicholas are from my friend Marie.
You can visit her website for her son Rob here ~Rob Northrop's Site.
This is a beautiful and loving gift for Angel Nicholas from my dear friend, Carol, mom to Angel Michael.
"Don't worry Mom, I'll take care of you", were the words he used just one week before his last. I remember the horrible rain storm that pounded on the car as my son drove us across the bridge joining Panama City to Panama City Beach, Florida. He knew my horror of bridges and plummeting into the water. The horror of drowning while looking up not being able to reach the top. He laughed at me as I rolled the window down in the pouring rain. He would tease me and quickly press the button to roll it back up. Back and forth we would go, rain pouring in the car, right until we reached the peak, then he rolled all 4 windows down with a sheepish grin and no words. I knew I was safe and I knew then he was no longer my little boy, but now my young man. Where had the time gone and how in such a short time had he gotten so wise and so old.
Nick and Mommie, only the beginning.
Sadly, Nick's mom Lisa died Dec. 18th 2012, she had a blood clot that broke loose and went to her heart. But she died peacefully in her sleep.
"Mom, don't be silly, what could happen," were the last words he said to me a week later, June 30, 2001 as I told him I loved him and to please be careful. He drove away with two of his best friends for an overnight camping trip near one of their homes.
Nick and Brent just before the spring 2001 dance.
Nick's girlfriend Jamie Lynn, his first and only true love.
I HOLD IN MY HAND
By: Jamie Lynn Lyon
I hold in my hand an empty space,
Where your small hand used to lay,
Now I only feel the cold nothing of the wind,
When I think about the image of your face.
Your hands so small and perfect,
Fitting like a puzzle with mine,
Yet strong and safe protecting me,
Who knew we would run out of time.
I still need those hands to hold me,
And wipe away my tears,
I never thought I'd lose you,
For this was my greatest fear.
Now only darkness surrounds me,
And I try to look for your hands,
I'm so scared I'll never reach you,
I just don't understand.
I miss you more than words can say,
You were the love of my life,
I'm blinded from everything I used to see,
Cause you were my guiding light.
Now you're my guardian angel,
That is only seen in my mind,
And the only thing in my hand now,
Are the memories left behind.
Little Lynn as Nick would call her was his first and only true love. Her words for him will forever keep their spirits joined. His star will shine above her wherever she goes in this life and he will greet her with hands outstretched as someday her journey will lead her home to him. May we always have a First Love when our hearts are pure and our souls are strong. Jamie Lynn, you are a blessing. Nick will be with you forever.
I didn't see my son again for 3 days when I walked into the funeral home alone. At once, everything that I had ever believed about Heaven and Hell and the supreme power of God was made a truth. I felt a warm and real calm fill the room. There was a peace that I was given that was to make the days to come more bearable. So many came to be with us to help us through those difficult moments. Not only did we have the pain of loss to deal with, we also had no money and menial insurance to cover the expenses that were placed before us, it was only mentioned once and teenagers, parents, friends, family, strangers an entire community came together and within 2 days all the expenses were covered and we never had one cent pass from our hands to the funeral home. I know now that God provided a way.
During that time I wanted to spend every second that I had left, memorizing the beautiful child that I gave birth to. I remember so many saying "He's not here" as though the words were recorded to replay over and over in my mind, but it wasn't the spirit, or heart or soul that I looked at, just those tiny hands that wrapped themselves around my finger when I brought him home as if to say, with no words, "I got you Mom." It was the curly brown hair that use to dangle in his eyes and on his shoulders until the time for flat tops and colored tips. It was those gorgeous brown eyes, the ones that wore the little round glasses, he claimed to be a nerd in, the ones that later turned from brown to blue, because contacts made him cool, the eyes that made every no a yes and every sad moment an ok. It was his strong legs and straight back that gave him confidence and speed and an ability to always strive for more. It was his arms, buff he called them even from the beginning, always steady, always strong and always outstretched to those in need of warmth and security. Those were the things I looked at, those were the things I placed in that box along with enough hopes, dreams and love of life to fill 100 fifteen year old bodies.
Nick and Emily his baby sister, just after she came home from the hospital.
Nick escorting Emily to Homecoming, the year he played for the Kennesaw General and she cheered for his team. She loved cheering her brother on in football. She was one of his biggest fans.
She never missed a game.
The scholarship was established in memory of our son, Nick, to be awarded to a student most considered to have the qualities that Nick possessed. I was 23 years old when the doctor told me I was pregnant with twins, at 4 and a half months I lost one of the twins and was told I would never be able to carry the other one full term. On Sept. 20th 1985, I gave birth to Nick. A strong, healthy, baby boy. He had a football in his hand before he could walk, not for our doing, just one of the many toys he loved most. On April 15th, at the age of seven, Nick had his first seizure which sent him by ambulance to the hospital. The second seizure was to follow on April 15th of the next year. The doctor joked that Nick was going to be an accountant, since each seizure had come on tax deadline day. The third seizure came that same year on Christmas Eve and again sent him to the hospital. Through each, Nick never slowed down. "They are minor epileptic seizures, (www.epilepsy.org, www.epilepsybereaved) the doctor said, no damage, nothing to worry about, no one ever died from it, let him have a normal life", and we did.
Nick, an Easter picture always a ham.
Nick was bound and determined to get all he could out of life and be sure everyone around him knew he was there. In November of his 6th grade year, Nick got very ill, he had contracted a parasite in his lung and had to be seen by specialist who preformed numerous test and breathing treatments, he missed 6 weeks of school and the doctors were convinced he had permanent lung damage and would have to quit playing football and running track. But again, Nick would not give up. He loved the game, he loved sports and being apart of a team, he came back that year, his last year to play before high school, to have the best year he had ever had. He ran 24 touchdowns and over 1300 yards in a nine game season and followed football by going to State Track competition and setting county records for shot put and winning three first place medals for 100 yards, 4x4 relay and shot put finals. Through it all, he never gave up.
Nick just after a football game in 2000. He was playing for North Cobb High School at the time.
While working hard to develop his competitive spirit he was also spending time developing lifetime friendships, always being there for others in need. One June 30, 2001 he had his last seizure. (Sudden Epileptic Death, SUPED, is defined as sudden unexpected, nontraumatic, nondrowning death. www.sudep.org.) The seizure that ended his journey in this life to begin his journey in the next. He had a special gift of being able to be non-judgmental, to be able to see through people to who they were on the inside and by doing so he was able to give away unexpected blessings and to help lighten the load of life by helping others carry the weight of their responsibilities and problems. Nick did not live his life based on years, but lived that life based on width and in doing so he is again giving a gift, this gift is for another to walk the path a little further and to spread qualities he had, those of: Competitive spirit, contagious leadership, spirit of humility, compassionate, humorous, outspoken, non-judgmental and that of a friend.
Nick, Julie and Ursula end of school 8th grade, signing annuals and goofing off as usual.
Nick had big hopes and big dreams, our only wish is that this scholarship be a living memorial to Nick, but also to those children that have true heart and spirit, those not focused on peer pressure and peer stature, just good honest living, with a need to leave precious memories and faithful friendships built on strong foundations. The scholarship is $2300.00 per year, an amount set by his peers for two reasons. The number 23 was Nick's football number, he was very anxious each year to be sure he maintained his number, it is only now that I know why. After Nick passed away and school began, I looked everywhere for signs, signs of hope, signs of peace and signs that all was going to be ok. The first sign was that of the 23rd Psalm, God gave me the first message of hope. Every time I felt sad and unsure, someone would walk by with a number 23 on their shirt.
Nick's last football picture.
The first 3 football games of the new season, the first without Nick, The first games was lost with an ending score of 23, the second game was lost with an ending score of 23, the third game was won by 23 points and I knew my son was still making a difference, if not in body, in memory, in spirit and belief. We still look out for 23's when we are extra sad and carry the 23rd Psalm with us to remind us that there is promise even though we must sometimes walk through the valley of the shadow of death.
The second reason was to award an amount that would make students want to work toward the goal of being someone that others would not easily forget, for their kindness and honor and love of life and each other. We are simple people and live a simple life, our blessings have not been that of wealth of material goods or money, but far more valuable. God blessed us with a life that was meant to make a difference, one that touched so many hearts. His memories keep him alive as will this scholarship. God keeps his promises and with this we will be able to help another child who has big hopes and big dreams come true, a child that can continue their journey a little farther in life and will know that this scholarship came from a beautiful life cut short and a world that understands and believes in all hopes and dreams and tomorrow's.
Nick and Mom and Emily made for dad for Christmas, he tried to hide behind Emily's bow,
it didn't look that big in person.
The 23rd Psalm
Nick and Emily before church on Easter Sunday, during the year they could dress
however they wanted, but Christmas and Easter were my times to play dress up.
Thank you for your support, your love and your words of encouragement. I hope that this becomes my purpose. I know that there will always be those of us who are meant to bring children into the world and be here to see them leave. We know our son Nick, is waiting for us in Heaven and we can't wait to tell him all about those we found just like him.
Nick's last school picture.
Please e-mail for more information:
Kennesaw Mountain High School
Nicholas E. Donley
Memorial Scholarship Fund
9-20-85 to 6-30-01
The mention of my child's name
May bring tears to my eyes,
But it never fails to bring
Music to my ears.
If you are really my friend,
Let me hear the beautiful music
of his name.
It soothes my broken heart
And sings to my soul.
~ Author Unknown
Thank you to my dear friend Rosemary for all your wonderful help
with sizing and framing Nick's photos for his pages.
Dear Lisa and ANGEL Nicholas
Your ANGEL Nicholas
Will always be near
You will always remember
the good times
Of him always being so dear
He has not wandered too far
He lives now just beyond the crest
We have heard by so many ANGEL'S
GOD only takes the best
And that is what our ANGEL'S are
MY BEST LOVE LISA
Dear Lisa and ANGEL Nicholas
Please don't think
Your ANGEL Nicholas
Has gone, he is just away
Open your Heart Lisa
And look up
Stars are the Windows to Heaven
Where your ANGEL Nicholas
He see's you, he gives you
That big smile of his
And a special wave of his hand
Just for you
PLEASE BELIEVE THAT
MY FONDEST LOVE LISA
In Loving Memory of Lee Henry Aguilera
A gift for the Donley family on their Angel Nick's Memorial
from one grieving parent to another. My prayers are with you.
GEOFFREY P. EDWARDS
With Love For Nicholas
God Bless You and Keep You Ever Close to His Merciful Heart
"Nick's Life has touched my heart."
"I have looked at Nick's pages for his 'Heaven Anniversary Day' and the rest of his memorial tribute, and they are really touching and beautiful. Nick was taken from this earth way too young. He was a son any mother could be proud of. I know one day you will be reunited as I will be with my Laura. God bless you and your family and everyone that loved Nick. May you have God's peace.
May you always feel him near you..."
"For Nick ~
You were so special and so loving
You were sent here for a special mission
and I know that when you entered
through Heaven's Gate,
our Dear Lord must have said to you,
"Well Done My Good and Faithful Servant,
Please enter into my Kingdom where you will have eternal happiness.
With Love To You Nick
May You Have Everlasting Joy
A friend can hear a tear drop.
Please visit Maria's Tribute to Christopher
Very Special Angels
This webpage is created In Loving Memory of Nicholas E. Donleyon December 12, 2003
Last updated: September 19, 2016
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Andrew... Our Miracle, Our Angel