A Celebration in Heaven

20130904-225737.jpgAt 5:05pm our precious lion heart gained his angel wings in the arms of his mother and father. He was surrounded by his family, nurses and doctors. We prayed hard for him to go home and God answered our prayers. Though it may not have been our idea of home, God met him at the gates and there was a huge celebration for our boy filled with dancing, laughing, no more pain, no more scars, and lots of country music! Our son leaves behind a legacy like no other. From his small hospital room in Los Angeles he changed the lives of thousands of people around the world. In 16 short weeks he taught deep lessons of love, courage, bravery, strength, and faith. We feel so blessed and honored to have been Owen’s parents and thank God for every second we got to be with him on this earth.

Details on Owen’s Celebration of Life are forthcoming.

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22 thoughts on “A Celebration in Heaven

  1. I send you healing beams of light to wrap around your hearts and help them heal and allow you to just breath. You were the best parents, loved him so much, he is your angel forever. I have no words as none are needed you did it all, everything with love, all with a belief it was going to be a celebration and it is, it is a celebration of love and deep caring and now he has gone home, to the greater family of all the years past. I can only send you love and healing and tell you what wonderful loving parents you were to guide him through this journey which has touched so many hearts and changed them forever. xoxo

  2. May God bless you all. It’s so comforting to know that the Mighty Warrior son of Mighty Warrior parents is smiling down on us. He is only a thought away. Thank you, Little Big Man. We will meet one day. Hope you are doing an awesome Boot Scoot Boogie up there!!! In deep love, Carol

  3. Carol, your thoughts and comments have always been filled with love. We have cherished each one. Thank You! Steve & Janet (Jeff’s parents)

    • Please accept my deepest condolences. Owen is not gone that’s for sure. And when I booted up my computer today, there he was! Smiling and looking just like Jeff! (Owen has been my screensaver for quite some time). Take good care and I hope to meet you soon.

  4. Grieving with you. Grateful you had as much time with him as you did. What a gift he is, what a wonderful painful beautiful gift! Owen we will all miss you so much! Thank you for visiting us!

    Sent from my iPad

  5. Just know that Owen has a special place in my heart FOREVER. Alissa-I have prayed daily, minute by minute and have asked my circle of friends to pray also. We prayed BOLDLY to God for Owen. We thank God each and every day that he fought, smiled and had the strength to be with us all for 16 weeks. I know that precious Owen gave it everything he had just like his parents who did everything and more to give him all they had….with so much love. I LOVE YOU, Deenna

  6. God bless the Vatter family. You are all in our thoughts and prayers as you grieve and celebrate Owen’s precious time he spent with you. What a strong little man he was that touched everyone who followed his journey. God bless, Ron

  7. Although it has only been lately that I subscribed to your link I have followed your blog on FB and my heart is very heavy today for the two of you. I do know that little Owen is in a better place than us and with his heavenly Father. But never the less there will always be a very large void in your heart. The reason I know that is I lost a son three years ago this Dec. 21st He was able to live a much longer life then Owen, because he was 52 and passed with cancer. But nothing changes the fact that it is one of the hardest things a parent has to go through. Tears are a river of healing and I know they will flow many times for you in times that you do not even expect them to happen. I know that Owen felt all the love you had for him in the short time he was with you, and he was very blessed to have had you as his parents. May God Bless the both of you and keep you safe in all the journey that you have in the up coming days. My heartfelt prayers are with you now and always..

  8. Thank you for allowing us to be part of little Lionheart’s journey. Your family has touched mine in many ways. He will be remembered with so much love.

  9. So sorry for your loss. Owen touched our family immensely and his spirit will be with us always. He fought the good fight! May God Bless you and yours in these difficult times. Jeff and Alissa, if you need anything at all, please do not hesitate to ask. Prayers and love to you!

  10. Through joy & tears, you have shared Owen’s Journey to those near & far. Owen was truly blessed & will live on in our hearts forever.

  11. Sitting at work today and I just can’t fathom what you, Jeff and your family are going through. Owen will forever have a special place in my heart. I admire your strength and especially admire and hope to one day be half of the mom that you are. ROAR on lion heart ❤ The imprint you've left is more than anyone could ever dream of leaving behind.

  12. May God bless you all. We thank you for letting us share in Owen’s remarkable journey. He has touched our lives – forever. You two are THE most remarkable parents and inspired us with awe. You are all three lion-hearts. At ketone t heal and know that your little angel will be with you forever.

  13. God delivers blessings in many different ways. Owen had the amazing ability to bless so many in his short time with us. Your outpouring of love and strength during these last few months demonstrate an incredible character and relationship that is an inspiration to all. My prayers and thoughts are with you.

  14. Dear Warrior Parents,

    The following was written, by a man named Ram Dass, to a family who tragically lost their daughter at a young age. I have replaced her name with Owen’s and pray that you find some comfort in it:

    Owen finished his work on earth, and left the stage in a manner that leaves those of us left behind with a cry of agony in our hearts, as the fragile thread of our faith is dealt with so violently. Is anyone strong enough to stay conscious through such teaching as you are receiving? Probably very few. And even they would only have a whisper of equanimity and peace amidst the screaming trumpets of their rage, grief, horror and desolation.

    I can’t assuage your pain with any words, nor should I. For your pain is Owen’s legacy to you. Not that he or I would inflict such pain by choice, but there it is. And it must burn its purifying way to completion. For something in you dies when you bear the unbearable, and it is only in that dark night of the soul that you are prepared to see as God sees, and to love as God loves.

    Now is the time to let your grief find expression. No false strength. Now is the time to sit quietly and speak to Owen, and thank him for being with you these few months, and encourage him to go on with whatever his work is, knowing that you will grow in compassion and wisdom from this experience.

    In my heart, I know that you and he will meet again and again, and recognize the many ways in which you have known each other. And when you meet you will know, in a flash, what now it is not given to you to know: Why this had to be the way it was.

    Our rational minds can never understand what has happened, but our hearts– if we can keep them open to God – will find their own intuitive way. Owen came through you to do his work on earth, which includes his manner of death. Now his soul is free, and the love that you can share with him is invulnerable to the winds of changing time and space. In that deep love, include me.

    In love, Carol Castro

  15. Alissa and Jeff, I am so sorry for your loss. There are no words for the emotions I’m sure you two feel. I too was hoping that you-all could go to your home and have some time together but sometimes the higher plan is different then we wish. You are the best parents Owen could have ever chosen.

    Love, strength and prayers, Patty and Bob

  16. I am so sorry for this loss. Our paryers and condolences to you and your family. My prayers this Sunday will be in Owens honor..just know he is an angel that will be with you until the end of time.

  17. Much love to you all. May God bless you and carry you. Thank you so much for sharing the gift of Owen with all of us. His impact on all of our lives has been immeasurable. Some people believe in angels; you held one in your arms.

    Jeff and the Jenkins family

  18. Jeff and Alissa – My words are not adequate to express the sorrow I feel for your loss. Your beautiful son was an inspiration to all. I am so blessed and lucky to have shared in his beauty. Every bit of my heart goes out to you during this most difficult time.

  19. So small, so loved, so soon, so missed. May you find peace in the lives he touched through his story. Owen will not be forgotten–he will always be in our hearts. With hugs of condolence. ❤

    Sent from my iPad keyboard; pardon any typos in this message.

  20. Heavenly Father I lift this family up & ask that you envelop them with your perfect love. Allow them a sense of peace & above all comfort them during such a sorrowful & difficult time. Surround them with loving supportive people & supply all their needs. Allow them courage to face the days ahead & bless them with the means to care for any bills they will have coming their way. Lord, thank you for allowing this little angel into the world if only for a short time. He brought many together in agreement of prayer that normally would not have done so & for that we give you all the glory. He fulfilled his purpose in this life too soon & so quickly but we are thankful he is in your loving arms at peace & resting. Thank you Lord that he will be there to greet his family when they complete their purpose here on earth. May his family be filled with joy knowing that they WILL see him again one day & spend eternity with him. In Jesus name, Amen
    ************
    May The Lord bless you & keep you in his care.
    Wanda Schultz

  21. I only recently started following Owen’s story and was so saddened to read the latest. That being said, we do not grieve as those without hope. Thank you Jesus for the hope of Heaven! May God’s peace be your reality today in spite of the heart ache. “For He is near to the brokenhearted, and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”

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