Ashley Cain, and his partner Safiyya Vorajee, recently had to live through every parent’s worst nightmare when their 8-month-old daughter Azaylia died from acute myeloid leukemia (AML) on April 24. On Monday, the alum of MTV’s The Challenge shared a video of himself playing with Azaylia to honor what would’ve been her 9-month birthday, according to People.
In the caption that accompanied the post, Cain wrote that his daughter turned 9 months old in heaven. “I’m finding it hard to look through photos and videos at the moment,” he wrote. “So I blindly scrolled through and posted the first video my finger landed on, and what an beautiful video it was!”
In the video, Cain is standing behind Azaylia as she cooed into the camera, cheering her on with chants of “Let’s get ’em, champ” while smothering the little girl in kisses.
“What a strong, clever, brave and beautiful little girl you were. My champion, my hero… MY INSPIRATION!” the post concluded. “#AzayliaDiamondCain FOREVER IN MY HEART.”
Cain also gave fans a small glimpse into what they were doing at home to honor the memory of Azaylia, sharing in a story that he and Vorajee were lighting candles at home to celebrate their baby girl’s life.
Azaylia was tragically diagnosed with AML at just 8-weeks-old after stomach pains prompted her parents to take her to the doctors. In a series of videos shared to Instagram, Cain described how his daughter’s trouble was originally written off as being colic, and how he had to take her to the doctor’s three times before getting help, according to the Daily Mail. “Each time they sent us away thinking our daughter had some normal routine baby problems. When in fact, her stomach wasn’t hurting because she had colic or was constipated,” he explained in his post. “Her breathing wasn’t impeded because of a blocked nose… She actually had leukemia not only in her bone marrow, but her stomach, her lungs AND her kidneys!”
During her battle against AML, Cain and Vorajee created a GoFundMe that raised more than $1.5 million. The fundraising account was updated on Saturday to explain how grateful the bereaved parents were to their supporters who rallied to help raise the money needed for Azaylia’s treatment in 24 hours. “That money can sadly no longer be used to help Azaylia, but we want to make sure it is used positively — and in Azaylia’s name,” the post stated. “After days of emotional yet careful consideration we have decided that, firstly, we would like to use some to give Azaylia a magical and deserving send off — something that we believe you would all want to be a part of. Secondly, we will use the remaining money to help other children through a new charity we are setting up in Azaylia’s name.” Cain explained how since they felt their daughter guided them throughout the process, it only felt right for them to continue to use the platform they built together to help those in similar situations.
“What we saw during our time fighting this monster has changed us forever, and we will spend the rest of our lives spreading Azaylia’s message of hope and strength to all those who need it,” he wrote. “We will ensure she lives on until the day we are able to hold her again in paradise.”
We can’t think of a more touching tribute, or a better way to honor Azaylia’s memory, than by trying to help other families facing the same situations. Our hearts are heavy for Cain and Vorajee today, but we hope that continuing to honor their daughter’s memory will bring them peace.