Overhearing the news, Elena’s parents Keith and Brooke decided to go out of their way to make their daughter’s last days as unforgettable and special as possible. During that time, they had Elena create a wish list with some unbelievable dreams on it. One was to have a piece of her artwork in a museum, which they actually finished her painting entitled I Love You was displayed in the Cincinnati Art Museum next to art by Pablo Picasso, her favorite artist.
Towards the end of their time together, Elena had a last daddy and daughter dance with her father before passing away two days later. But what the family discovered after Elena’s was gone was truly remarkable.
The outcome was Notes Left Behind, a book published by Brooke and Keith which compiles stories of the valuable time they spent during Elena’s last days as well as Elena’s own notes and artwork left for her family. Above all else, the project was also a way for the Desserich family to provide that Grace would always have memories of her older sister.
In addition to the book, the family also founded The Cure Starts Now, a foundation which strives to rid the world of all cancer. As of today, the foundation has raised more than seven million dollars for research and treatment. A portion of the sales ofNotes Left Behind also goes towards funding the foundation.