On September 23, 1988 Ernest and Anneke Robinson welcomed their son, Matthew Stanford Robinson, into the world. Matthew was born with severe disabilities. Due to a lack of oxygen, he was blind and paralyzed from the neck down.
Doctors said that Matthew would only live a few hours, but due to the support of his family and his own strength, Matthew lived to be 10-and-a-half years old.
When Matthew passed away in 1999, Matthew’s father, Ernest, decided to make his son’s gravestone special, something that would portray Matthew and symbolize hope rather than sorrow.
And when you scroll down and see the pictures below, you’ll understand why the gravestone has become one of the most touching in the world.
In 1988, Matthew Stanford Robinson came into this world blind and paralyzed from the neck down.
His parents, Ernest and Anneke, were told that Matthew only had a few hours to live.
But Matthew was a fighter. He lived a life full of love and hope. Although he could only speak a few words, Matthew continued to inspire his family and everyone around him.
On Sunday, February 21, 1999 Matthew died in his sleep before his 11th birthday. And at his funeral, the church was filled with mourners.
Matthew’s obituary included the following message: “And then it shall come to pass, that the spirits of those who are righteous are received into a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they shall rest from all their troubles and from all care, and sorrow.”
In 2000, Matthew’s father, Ernest, had a gravestone built in memory of his son. It features a stunning sculpture of a boy getting up out of his wheelchair and reaching up toward heaven.
The gravestone has became a place of hope rather than a place of mourning, and it has been visited by millions of people from all over the world.
Enjoy Utah describes it this way: “One day while driving around doing research at the Salt Lake City Cemetery, I spotted this beautiful headstone and memorial. It immediately brought tears to my eyes, and continues to every time I visit it. Never before had I come across such a touching statue that tells so much just at first glance.”
Inspired by their son, Ernest and Anneke started a charity called Ability Found. The organization helps disabled people with assistive equipment that many cannot afford.
And by helping others, they honor Matthew for all the good that he gave them.
Please share this wonderful story of little Matthew if you’d also like to honor his memory.
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