A couple whose 6-year-old son died suddenly after contracting an infection says they found an incredibly moving note from him after he passed away.
When Amber Shumake and her husband, Tim, went home to pick up clothes for Leland's burial, they say they found a note on the table her child had written. It said, "Still with you, thank you Mom and Dad... [it's a] good day."
Shumake, who is from Williamson, Georgia, told BuzzFeed News that her son Leland was an intelligent and amazing little boy. "He was the light of our life and the center of this family," she wrote on Facebook.
A few weeks ago, Leland started complaining of headaches. He was treated for allergies by a doctor, but he soon started throwing up.
His parents took him to a children's hospital in Atlanta, and he was hospitalized. Doctors couldn't figure out what was wrong, so they put him on multiple medications.
"I sat by his bedside every day and every night trying to figure it out myself," his mom said.
Eventually, doctors told the family their son had meningitis.
"He then got way worse. Stopped communicating as much, said his vision was completely gone, had to have a drain put in one side of his head to relieve the pressure and the fluid," Shumake said.
Shumake said she asked doctors to test her son for an amoeba. He came back positive for Balamuthia, a rare infection that is usually fatal. "I was devastated," Shumake said.
Doctors began treating the infection, but Leland died from the disease just a few days later.
After Shumake shared the note on Facebook, his story was picked up by multiple national media outlets.
Shumake said the family has been overwhelmed by the support they have received.
"We knew he was special and everyone he met fell in love with him but we never expected him to touch people globally," she said.