Haley C. Mitchell

Published 1:03 am Saturday, October 30, 2010

ELIZABETH CITY – Haley Christiana Mitchell, 13, of 2048 Rivershore Road, Elizabeth City, NC, joined the angels on Tuesday evening, October 26, 2010 at Children’s Hospital of the King Daughters in Norfolk, VA.

Born in Elizabeth City, NC, she was the daughter of Jeff Mitchell and Valerie Sword Mitchell of the residence. 

Besides her parents, she is survived by a sister, Kelsie Mitchell; maternal grandmother, Sandy Honaker and husband, Lanny, of Jonesborough, TN; and paternal grandfather, Bill Mitchell of Gatesville; an uncle, Greg Mitchell and wife, Lisa, of Durham, NC; an aunt, Belinda Vanderlip and husband, Jason, of Phoenix, AZ; and cousins, Justin and Sarah Mitchell and Dylan Vanderlip. She was preceded in death by a maternal grandfather, H.T. Sword; and paternal grandmother, Frances Mitchell. 

Haley made a lasting impression on everyone with whom she came in contact, especially the many nurses, teachers, therapists, and special friends who surrounded her with love. While her physical challenges were overwhelming, her positive attitude and spirit more than compensated for them.  She touched many lives in her short tenure with her unmistakable lessons of patience, tolerance and happiness under adverse circumstances, leaving lasting impressions on the children of the community.

Haley has been the inspiration for a major fundraising effort over the last 12 years to raise money for research and ultimately a cure for Spinal Muscular Atrophy.  The Haley Mitchell Ski-a-thon has contributed almost $400,000 in her honor since 1998 to Families of SMA, the lead organization that funds research and family support services. 

A funeral service will be held on Saturday, October 30, 2010 at 1:00 p.m. at New Community Church with the Rev. Gene Asbill and the Rev. Mike Gothard officiating.  Burial will be in West Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery.

The family will receive friends at the residence.

Memorial contributions can be made to Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy, 925 Busse Road, Elk Grove Village, IL 60007 or online at www.fsma.org.

Twiford Funeral Homes, 405 East Church Street, Elizabeth City, NC is serving the Mitchell family.  Condolences may be expressed to the family at www.twifordfh.com.