Talia Marie Pleasant, a 4-year-old whose battle with cancer drew wide support across two counties, died of the disease May 24 at Johns Hopkins Hospital with her parents, Jerome and Leda, at her side.
Family, friends, neighbors and strangers helped the Pleasant family, of Joppa, as the father and daughter both struggled with rare forms of cancer. Communities in Harford and Baltimore counties, particularly in Essex, home of Talia's extended family, donated time and money, organized silent auctions, car washes and prayer circles. They did whatever they could to help ease the burden on the family.
"This one little girl brought a lot of people together," said Clare Peterson, a family friend.
Jerome Pleasant's cancer is in remission, but for Talia there would be no cure. She asked for a trip to Disney World to see her favorite princesses and again her circle of caring friends made it possible. They raised funds for that trip last month. Talia smiled in a photo, posing with a poster that said, "I am going to Disney World with my best friends. I can't wait to see Cinderella."
Services were held yesterday at Trinity Reformed Baptist Church in Joppa.
In addition to her parents, survivors include grandparents Cheryl and Jack Zill of Middle River, Salina and Nathan Williams of Aberdeen, and Duward Grice of Abingdon; and great-grandparents Shirley and Calvin Fritsch of Joppa and Eva Pleasant of Aberdeen.