After battling cancer for 20 months out of her 27 months of life, Ariya passed away..this is her story.

After battling cancer for 20 months out of her 27 months of life, Ariya passed away..this is her story.

Samantha Jennings (@Ariyagodslion)


My name is Samantha and my life became complete on 5/18/17 when I gave birth to my first child, a beautiful girl that we named Ariya. 

She was pure, loving and filled our lives with joy. At 7 months old, she was diagnosed with infant acute lymphoblastic leukemia and our perfect world came crashing down on us. 

Our sweet girl endured harsh chemotherapy and after a full year of treatment, we got the news that her leukemia had returned. 

We spent the next 8 months finding her cure. We traveled from our home hospital to St. Petersburg, FL to undergo treatment. 

We spent months and months at a time living in a 200 square foot hospital room.

Unfortunately on Mother’s Day 2019, we heard the words “there so nothing else we can offer your daughter.” We didn’t take that for an answer.

 I couldn’t fathom giving up on her. In 24hrs we were on a plane and headed to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN. 

Unfortunately, Ariya’s immune system was run down from all the toxic and harsh chemotherapies that she endured. 

We thought it couldn’t get worse until we found out that she had contracted a pulmonary fungal infection which is common in patients without an immune system. 

After battling cancer for 20 months out of her 27 months of life, Ariya passed away on 8/2/19 and went to be with Jesus. 

Our lives since that day has not been the same. I am completely lost and heartbroken. My mission is to ensure that Ariya’s memory lives on and to raise awareness for childhood cancer. 

When we named her, we didn’t know that it had a meaning until after her diagnosis. Ariya is “God’s Lion” and that’s exactly how she fought throughout her journey.

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1 comment

  • Thank you so much for sharing my sweet girls story. This means the world to me. God bless!

    Samantha Jennings

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