Tuesday, August 13, 2013

goodbye

**a note: thank you to every one of the hundreds of family and friends who came to mourn with us, to Phil, Ken and everyone at Perry Funeral Home in Lynbrook, to everyone who contacted us with their thoughts, well wishes and condolences. 

It is very important to me that you all know that Quinn was never in any pain.  She is not 'free from pain' as I've seen oft-written, she is simply free from our world.  She passed away peacefully, at home, and in our arms.

I wanted to share my final words to the most important person in my life - both for those who braved the rain to stand with us and couldn't hear over its pounding on their umbrellas and those who loved her, and us, from afar.**

Quinn's Eulogy


One year, two months, three weeks and three days.  Not a lot of time, and definitely not enough time.  For you, though, it was sufficient time to make everyone who met you see you not as a baby - and definitely not as The Sick Baby - but as a person in your own rite.  From the moment you were born, despite being number three, you weren’t the baby - you were simply Quinn. Like Madonna, you needn’t any further introduction, and it stayed that way throughout your too short life - and will stay that way throughout your too long death.


I tried getting out of this, baby girl.  I read stories of stronger moms than me giving their children’s eulogy and I would say to anyone who would listen, “Wow, I can’t imagine how they did that - I couldn’t ever do that.”  Just so they all knew that when this inevitable time came I was going to balk and hopefully everyone would understand.


But you being a Person, I had to answer to you too.  And we both knew all the time, I suppose, that I could never get out of doing this no matter how hard it is.  Without taking away from either of our relationships with other people, we had something pretty damn special between us and without ever saying a word, you communicated volumes to me about everything - life, love and stinky butts.  


You enchanted - and continue to enchant - the world over.  People are mourning you, Quinn - not that poor sick Linzer baby.  It is you and your nasty looks, you and your crazy determination, you and your infectious smiles and laughs that we will all miss.  


We were all robbed of a lifetime of those - but our lifetime.  I truly believe you lived out yours.  You ate real food when you never should have.  Sat up on your own when you never should have.  Were an honest to god One Year Old when you never should have.  


Colin and Reid have had too much free time the past four days without you.  They haven’t been scurrying to pick up the puzzle pieces and toys you threw down when you were done with them - only to throw them down immediately upon receiving them again.  They haven’t been popping up in the back of your playhouse yelling “Peek-a-boo”, or dancing naked in dog towels after bath to get a giggle and shriek out of you.  They have been talking about you nonstop Quinny - and laughing at the memories, and crying at the loss.  You were very lucky to have to such amazing, selfless, crazy Big Brothers.  And they hit the jackpot when you became their sister.


We will miss the way you light up when any of us walked into the room.  The way you would bob up and down and throw back your arms when you heard daddy’s voice coming into the house.  The way you would giggle and smile and scream and yell - whatever was your propensity at the moment.  


I will miss holding you.  I did it for 1 year, 2 months, 3 weeks and 3 days almost nonstop.  I don’t know what to do with my arms now, baby girl - they are so empty without you.  I know we’ll make it through this simply because we have no other choice, I just don’t know how without you to show me.  You are responsible for everything I know and everything I am and it’s going to be so so hard to figure it out without you now.  


But that’s for us to worry about. You have no worries anymore.  Because I know that where you are you’re healthy - and running and jumping and playing in the ocean breeze.  You’re finally able to speak what’s been going on in that mind, behind those wise eyes.  And I know you were received with such joy up there, and are already running the joint.  


So don’t forget our instructions Quinny.  Find Grandpa Carney and whistle at him to get him to do stuff for you, like he used to do to Nana.  Find Grandpa Murry and ask him for some money, no senior discount.  Then take that money and go find Grandma Cyndi and have her take you shopping - she’s really good at it.  Have a cup of tea with aunt Pat, and a gin and tonic with aunt Mary.  And play with Lily, Trek, and all of those beautiful babies who went before you, who will show you the way and guide you through.  They’ll keep you for us until we can hold you again.


And send us a sign here and there - let us know you’re ok.  Daddy and I have already seen your lavender sky and your heart shaped cloud.  Thank you.

Thank you for picking us, baby girl.  I love you - always and forever.

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My niece Katie created this super sweet video of photos of Quinn. I invite you to visit it and get to know her for who she was, not her disease.


56 comments:

  1. So beautiful.
    So brave.
    So wise.
    So courageous.

    Quinn... AND you.

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  2. What a beautifully written eulogy and tribute to such a powerful force of life. We'll miss you sweet Quinn.

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  3. Thank you so much for sharing Quinn's Eulogy and the photos of her. I cried reading this post. I never knew Quinn but I am so thankful that you shared her with us on your blog. I was thinking of your family this morning knowing how all of your hearts must be breaking as you said your final goodbyes. She is a beautiful little angel in heaven with God. Bless you and your family as you find your way without her.

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  4. This is beautiful. May she rest in peace. Your family, all of you, truly changed the world. You have the strength of 100 people Eileen, you have been strong for Quinn and for your family and I hope you can accept the comfort of strength of others who want to carry you during this incredibly difficult time. Hugs.
    Stacy

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  5. There are no words that could match yours in expressing how amazing your eulogy is. You write beautifully and you honored her perfectly. I'm not a "tear up" kinda gal, but I got misty eyed reading this. Quinn really hit the jackpot with you as her mother.

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  6. Thank you for sharing your sweet baby girl with us. Sharing her life, her journey, her personality, and those great looks you speak of. They really are absolutely fabulous. Thank you Eileen, and thank you Quinn!

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  7. The world lost a precious gem when heaven gained a beautiful angel named Quinn. Thank you for allowing all of us to share in your story.

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  8. These children do choose us to make their lives full and you certainly did that. May your beautiful memories provide you comfort.

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  9. Thank you for sharing. It was beautiful!

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  10. The world lost some of its sparkle with the passing of your beautiful Quinn. Thank you for sharing her with us, we are all better people for knowing Quinn and your amazing family. Eileen, your strength, dignity and unconditional love for your family is something I aspire to. I wish you and Brett the all the strength you need to honor Quinn and her beautiful brothers.

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  11. standing with you all in spirit....

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  12. I'm sorry I have written my condolences until now - I could not find the proper words to express my deepest sympathies to your family. Reading your Eulogy to Quinn was so touching - you have been such a fantastic person through all of this - i can only imagine how hard it has been. I am sure that Quinn is shining down from above even on the darkest days.

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  13. What a beautiful and happy little girl, I loved seeing all the pictures. I'm so happy you all had each other, your family is so full of love, and my heart aches for you that this has happened. I know things will never feel exactly right again, but I hope each day gets a little bit easier.

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  14. How beautifully written and how lucky Quinn was to have you for a Mom, and you to have her as a daughter. She was a beautiful little girl who touched the lives so many, even those of total strangers. May her memory brighten your days and may you find peace during this difficult time.

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  15. Beautifully written. Sending you and your family blessings and love through this unimaginable difficult time. Quinn was and will forever be beautiful.

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  16. Dearest Linzer Family,

    Not sure if you've ever heard the song, "Beam Me Up" by Pink...I believe she wrote it for a friend who had lost a child. I will try to attach the link to it...so sincerely sorry...grieving, loving, and thinking of your sweet family. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=PFYm9LKsuUo

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  17. Never having met your family, yet living through every post you wrote - I want you to know that Quinn touched my life in ways I can't find the words for. She taught me to live, not just walk through each day waiting for the next. She taught me to smile, and really laugh - at things that I may never before have thought were funny. But mostly, through the way her eyes lit up whenever she was around the four of you - she taught me to love! Thank you for sharing Quinn with all of us. She is and will always be beautiful, and I hope everyday from now until you hold her again - you get a sign!!!
    My thoughts and my prayers are with you!

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  18. This is such a beautiful testimate of your love and the power of Quinn. Sending you so much love. Xoxo S

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  19. Sending you love and prayers.... Xoxo

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  20. You are amazing. To be able to write such a beautiful eulogy (in tears over it!) and still devote the time to let all of us know what you wrote while you go through this - you are one in a million.

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  21. What an amazing smile Quinn has. Thanks for sharing her with us.

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  22. Thank you for these warm and inspirational thoughts. I am in awe of how you've dealt with this tragic loss of such a sweet and wonderful little girl. My heart goes out to you and appreciate how you've shared your feelings. May you find comfort in Quinn's sweet memories.

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  23. Sorry for your loss. I just heard about Quinn's story a few months back and stumbled onto your blog. What an inspiration. Sorry if that sounds insensative but it teaches people to live each moment like it's the last you get.

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  24. The mother you refer to as "stronger than you" - that woman is you, Eileen. You are that "stronger mother than me". You have articulated your time with Quinn so beautifully. From the point of diagnosis you have embraced all that life has to offer & have shared it with us all through your blog. When it's my turn, I will think of you, Quinn & your family knowing that it will give me just a bit more strength to go forward. I really don't know what else to say. Your family has walked this journey in time with ours & Quinn will always be remembered here even though we never met.

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  25. My Dear All,

    I am sending love and support from Turkey Eskisehir. from there how much we loved and still love our Angel Quinny. Elieen you are the strongest and the perfect woman that i ever seen. Be strong i believe that God has a plan for each of us. My heart and love with you. Quinny you are an angel sweetest angel i love you. İ have never met you but fall in love to you sweet girl. Elieen thank you that you shared everything about Quinny and thank you for your last sharing. We are with you. And Quinn is with us she is looking us from heaven the greatest place. Quinny i love you. Love you sunshine.

    Elieen you are so wise brave woman so beautiful as QUINNY....

    ALWAYS IN OUR HEARTS....

    Esmira and Tunjay CİFTCİ

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  26. I have been thinking about Quinn nonstop, and sending so much love and so many prayers your family's way. What you wrote is beautiful and amazing, but it breaks my heart that you had to write it...Quinn should still be here with you. There really are no words...you said it all. Just sending lots and LOTS of love.

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  27. I have been thinking of you guys- sending my prayers and love from Germany. This post is so beautifully written. She was so blessed to have you as her family, just as we were all so blessed to get to know her- even if it was afar and just from this blog. Thank you so much for sharing your precious little angel with everyone- we are all so much better for having witnessed the larger than life spirit of Quinn Linzer!

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  28. Eileen=Mother
    As Quinn inspired you to be your highest self, you inspire us.
    My deepest, most heartfelt condolences to you, Brett and your sons. I send you all love and strength. Quinn was a beautiful and precious gift, thank you for sharing her life and journey with us, we are all richer for having "known" her.
    Hope

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  29. You have been in my constant prayers and will continue to stay in them. I follow Chelsea's blog and began following yours through her. I already miss Quinn so much, and have never even met her. Your beautiful family has touched my heart. My children, family, and entire church will continue to lift you all up on prayer.

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  30. What a beautiful tribute to your daughter and the wonderFULL life you all shared. Thanks for giving us another glimpse into your lives and the person Quinn was. As I continue to remember Quinn (because how can she be forgotten, even to those of us who never had the fortune of meeting her?), I will think of her and her brothers giggling over dances in towels and Quinn getting excited when her daddy came home. I will picture her as I know she is now - happy and healthy and smiling as she feels an ocean breeze. But most of all I will picture Quinn in your arms, where she belongs. Sending you all strength, peace and love.

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  31. I continue to think of your beautiful family over the last couple of days! You are all so so strong and your words for Quinn were beautiful! Thank you for sharing yours and Quinn's journey with us! My heart goes out to you all and I pray you continue to find peace in the wonderful memories you have of Quinn! Love and prayers!

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  32. I wish I had words that could ease your pain, but of course, there are none. Just know that my arms are just two of the 10,000 that are here to hold all of you up in whatever way we can. So very much love to you all. xoxo

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  33. Beautiful, absolutely beautiful eulogy. I'm not much of a crier but I am sitting here trying to stop the tears falling. As lucky as you say you were to have Quinn, I think she was just as lucky. You were obviously put together for a reason. Loved the references to what Quinn should do in heaven. I hope she is having a ball up there. Thinking of you and hoping for the day when the pain starts to ease for you and your family. xxx

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  34. What a beautiful tribute Eileen! I truly believe each soul comes here with a purpose, and while some souls may take eighty years to fulfill their purpose, others may take just one. It takes a very special and magical soul to do the work of a lifetime in just one short year, and your Quinn was clearly one of those amazing souls. What a gift that you chose each other for this journey, albeit bittersweet that your physical time together was so short, but I have no doubt that her spirit will remain around you until you meet again. In the meantime, be kind to yourself, and wrap your arms just a little tighter around those sweet little boys of yours! Sending all of our love, Deanna and Dave

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  35. Thank you so much for sharing Quinn with us and your beautiful family! You are in my mind and in my heart! xo

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  36. I am so sorry that you all didn't have more time with sweet Quinn, but i am thankful for the time that you did have and that she was never in pain. I'm thankful that you shared her journey with all of us. She had so much life behind those big, beautiful eyes. I pray that you all can find some comfort in your memories and love for her. God bless you all.

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  37. Eileen,

    You and your family are never more than a second away from my thoughts. Im so grateful for your blog. You make me want to be a better mother...Thank You for sharing your beautiful words.

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  38. Eileen, I haven't been on FB in awhile, so had no idea what you were going through, just happened to see the post from someone else. I just want you to know that my thoughts and prayers are with you. Reading these recent posts on your blog really moved me and impelled me to write you and let you know how strong you are for going through this and for being able to give Quinn a childhood despite her illness. Thank you for sharing your your touching eulogy and your memories of your daughter. with love Janelle

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  39. I'm so sorry for your loss of your sweet baby girl. I've followed your story through Trek and Chelsea's blog. Your eulogy was beautiful....just like your baby girl.

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  40. Wow - so beautiful. I couldn't have done that at my sons funeral - i was in too much shock. Prayers for you all.

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  41. Beautiful tribute. Thank you for sharing something so personal. You are an amazing mom. It's very clear where Quinn got her awesomeness from. Quinn was an amazing little girl. I never met her but knew how awesome she was thanks to your blog posts and pictures. You helped countless people like me get to know her from afar and I'm very grateful for that. Thank you for sharing sweet Quinn with the world. I'll never forget her - her strength, her determination and her beautiful smile. My thoughts and prayers are with you now and in the days ahead.

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  42. Your words were beautiful and so touching. There is so much love in your family. Thank you, again, for sharing Quinns life with us and for sharing your video. I am very sorry that you are having to go through this loss and I pray that Quinn shows you time and again that she is and forever will be with you.

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  43. Eileen,

    I am so terribly sorry for your loss- I hadn't checked your blog in a couple weeks and I was shocked to learn about Quinn- though it was inevitable, it was still a shock. Tears being shed here in Wisconsin for you.

    Thank you for sharing your journey with us all- it has changed the way I look at my own son, and my daughter-to-be...I hope that my little gal is half the spark of light that Quinn was to everyone around her. I will be praying for you and your brave family- keep going one day at a time and thank you again for sharing Quinn with the world. God Bless!

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  44. Thank you for sharing such a beautiful part of your life with us. I am sad for your loss, and happy that you had a chance to be a part of her life. We all did just a little.

    I saw that lavender sky. The neighbor looks lovely with all the lavender. There is not a day that goes by that Sebastian doesn't ask what the ribbons are for. He loves to hear about the beautiful little girl, Quinn.

    Love,
    Tess

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  45. Thank you for the honor of sharing your lives for the last 'One year, two months, three weeks and three days.' You ARE that stronger mom. The one we all look at and think, I could never do that. You have been amazing and inspiring and uplifting through what would make most buckle at the knees and refuse to really live out that one year, two months, three weeks and three days. Instead you looked beautiful Quinn in the face and said we will make this a beautiful existence for as long as we can. You gave her every single thing a little girl can ever dream of. Her big brothers gave her every ounce of a relationship any girl could ever hope for. Daddy's little girl will always know what it's like to be a princess. Your family is the picture of grace and resilience. Quinn will always be with you and a part of your presence. We will all miss her physically, but she has instilled so much love and change for the better that her legacy will be seen every time we live every moment to the fullest, never more taking advantage of our time together. Her smile will be seen in a rainbow, her tears in the next rain and her love in the beam of sunshine that kisses your face in the morning and warms your soul. Thank you. Thank you all for letting us in your beautiful world and for making us better for it XOXO Continued prayers for peace in your heart <3

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  46. you are a brave, brave woman, even though you can't see it now. You did good. I say that all the time, but it is the truth. You did good! Continue to do good in Quinn's name. Good luck to you - you, your husband, your boys will all be in my prayers. I'm sorry for the pain you will feel for the rest of your life, but I know you will continue to do good. And Quinn will always be alive in all of our memories.

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  47. I am so sorry for your loss. Quinn has an incredible way of drawing people in from near and far with those "wise eyes" of hers. I come to you from afar, a stranger that was captivated by those eyes and that smile, to learn a lesson about love and living in the moment.

    I just have one thing to share with you. When my grandmother passed a story was read at her funeral called Waterbugs and Dragonflies. You can Google it and find it easily. It is a beautiful story, a metaphor of sorts about Heaven and Earth. Since my grandmother's passing I see dragonflies all the time. While I was reading the email of your dear Quinn's passing, I was sitting up at the lake watching my daughter play in the sand. Just at that same moment I was reading the blog post a dragonfly flew by. It brought comfort to me to see the dragonfly at that time, as I hope this sharing of this story can bring some comfort to you. I too will look for lavender skies and heart shaped clouds.

    Kris (from Ohio)

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  48. I want to say something, anything to try to make the situation feel better or the hurt to not be but there are no words that can do that. I have been following Quinn for so long and I think of her everyday and I think of all of you and how hard it is to be going forward. You are an amazing family and have been beyond brave. I don't think I will ever forget this blog and I know I will never forget Quinn and her story. She has made me want to be the best mom to my boys that I can be. Her story has helped me to slow down and enjoy life with my family. I don't think about her and say poor Quinn , I think about her , like you said, as Quinn the strongest, bravest little girl that I have ever seen. She is a beautiful little girl that so many people have come to love and care about. God bless you all.

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  49. Dear Linzer Family,

    I am so grateful for the tribute to Quinn, each day goes by and I'm reminded to slow down when it comes to my kids. You and your family have shown me that there is more to life than materialistic things and rather than become frazzled about everything, to slow down and enjoy my kid's because after all they're only kids once and "tomorrow" is never guaranteed. I wish Quinn could see the strength and love that's being displayed, she was a strong young lady and will forever remain etched in my heart. My prayers go out to you and your family.

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  50. I'm so sorry for your loss. Your eulogy to Quinn is beautiful.

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  51. The way your family chose to live life to the fullest, even in the midst of unpredictable and undesirable circumstances was inspiring, to say the least. Thanks for sharing Quinn, and your heart, with us. May the God of comfort and peace hold you so close during this time of unimaginable sorrow.

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  52. I'm so sorry for your loss of your sweet baby girl.

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  53. I wanted you to know that Quinn and your family continue to stay in our hearts and prayers. I have been following your story for sometime now, and I want you to know how much Quinn and her amazing family have touched our lives. I don't feel any words will be right at this moment other that I am so sorry. Please know that sweet Quinn has done more, has touched more in her sweet life than most will do in a lifetime. The love, support, opportunities and life that you gave Quinn melts my heart; every post I read, every picture I saw, it could be felt. Just know that Quinn has made a difference in the world. Thank you for sharing your Quinn, your story, your world. It has made us better. Quinn has made this world a better place.

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  54. Your words about Quinn are absolutely beautiful - I can picture her and all you describe in my head as I read. I have been following your blog for awhile now and I just wanted to offer my condolences on the loss of your beautiful baby girl Quinn. She has touched my life and countless others in ways I've never thought a stranger could. Thank you for choosing to share your story and your lives. I've been thinking of Quinn and your family a lot recently and am hoping you can find peace. Every time I hear the song The Mighty Quinn I think of your daughter even though the lyrics really don't have anything to do with a little girl. But Quinn, she is mighty, that's for sure!

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  55. So beautiful Eileen. May God watch over Quinn.

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