Kayla Gajeton: Lost too young to brain cancer at 21 – Obituary

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Kayla Briana Gajeton, 21, of Knightdale, North Carolina, entered into eternal rest, on May 26, 2017, following a brain cancer diagnosis 5 days after her 21st birthday.

The past eight months were spent surrounded by family and friends that Kayla had touched in some small way throughout her short, yet very memorable life. Kayla’s life would seem too short to many, but those who were touched by her understood that the quality of existence far exceeds the quantity of time in which one lives. Her amazing smile could melt the hearts of those around her and her determination was contagious. Kayla was a warrior all throughout her life and overcame many obstacles up until it was her time. She had amazing strength and a positive outlook despite her diagnosis and always pushed forward. Kayla always left a piece of herself in those who got to know her.

Although Kayla’s illness made it difficult to do the things she once loved, she possessed strength, perseverance, and an ability to overcome incredible odds and physical challenges. With her courage she led us to believe that each day is a blessing and an opportunity to create lasting memories. She could spend hours in the gym or helping me and her grandparents with yard work or cleaning our house, while always making time to create memories with her siblings. She enjoyed painting, volunteering at the church, color guard, dancing, reading, hiking, looking at street art, going to concerts and always listening to music and spending time with her friends and boyfriend.

With Kayla’s passing we remind others that her life is one to be celebrated. Although we will miss her everyday, especially her winning smile, she will forever remain in our hearts. Through her teachings about life learned through adventure, her family and I were able to create wonderful memories and it has been a privilege to be her mother. I am so thankful for all of Kayla’s siblings and especially her niece Allison, whom she got very close to in the last few months, so that they can hold dear the memory of Kayla’s gentle soul and strong spirit. I learned a lot through the eyes of my first born child. Kayla taught me what it was like to love someone unconditionally and without end. Although it pains all of us in Kayla’s passing, it comforts me to know she was a child of the Lord. Her salvation is my peace.

Kayla leaves behind many wonderful caregivers that provided love and support that enhanced her quality of life. Kayla’s love extends to her wonderful nurse, Ellen, as well as a special place in our hearts for Kayla’s neuro-oncologist, Dr. Cachia, and her radiologist, Dr. Cooper, and the radiology staff at MUSC Mt. Pleasant and Downtown Charleston. Most importantly her Grandma Fe and Grandpa Gil. Because of their continual dedication, love and support, Kayla was able to survive some of her toughest medical challenges and maintain an active quality of life up until her last days with hope and realistic goals.

There were many other friends and family that were there for her during her treatment and those who spent time with her as well as help raise funds for her expenses during her treatment by making t- shirts, selling items, donating, and paying her car payments. All of these special people, provided Kayla with love and dignity in her life and also in her death, near and afar. You are greatly appreciated by her as well as her family.

Kayla is survived by her mother and step-father Fidel and Melissa Gallegos of Knightdale, NC; father W03 Brian R. Gajeton Sr., US Army, Stationed in Vicenza, Italy; sisters Kimberly (20), Lauren (17), Isabella (11), Arianna (8), and Eva (6); brothers Enrique (15) and Jonathan (10); niece Allison (1); paternal grandparents Wilhelm and Fe Gajeton of North Charleston, SC; paternal uncle Willie “John” Gajeton of North Charleston; maternal uncles David Guy and wife Donna of Moncks Corner, SC, Steven Guy and wife Heather of North Charleston, SC; maternal aunt Cynthia “Cindy” Guy of West Columbia, SC; and cousins Kaytlyn and Gillian Gajeton of North Charleston, SC, and Timothy “Timmy” Guy of West Columbia, SC, as well as numerous other aunts, uncles, and cousins abroad in the Philippines and here in the United States. Kayla also shared a special love for her boyfriend Tome’ Gordo, of Raleigh, NC, and best friend, Alex Democovici, of Holly Springs, NC.

In a short time they made a lifetime of memories from adventures, trials and tribulations, graduation, love, and also decide to walk down this road with Kayla when they didn’t have to. To be so young and still stick by her side helped Kayla get through days when she didn’t want to fight sometimes. It was the two of you she shared a special bond with. You guys all learned through each other and Kayla took a piece of each of you with her. She was predeceased by her maternal grandparents Larry and Elizabeth “Libby” Guy.

Visitation hours are to be held Tuesday May 30, 2017, from 5-7 pm at Carolina Memorial Funeral Home, North Charleston, SC. There will be a funeral service May 31, 2017, at 10:00 am at the Goose Creek United Methodist Church in Goose Creek, SC, and procession to Carolina Memorial Park for her burial after the service. A reception will follow after the burial at Goose Creek United Methodist Church in Goose Creek. Visit our guestbook at www.legacy.com/obituaries/charleston