Curtis Bengtson Sayles, 15, of Lansing, NY, died unexpectedly on Wednesday, March 5, 2014 in Cincinnati, OH with his Mom and Dad by his side. Curtis was born July 3, 1998 in Ithaca, NY, with severe cerebral palsy. Curtis overcame many health challenges in his short life and was able to rise above them with assistance from superior doctors, nurses, and family. Although a true fighter, Curtis could not defeat his collapsing airway that was diagnosed in March 2013.
Curtis enjoyed swimming, the outdoors, classical music, his school plays, favorite videos of Clifford the Big Red Dog and his family and friends. Throughout his short life there were many people that cared for Curtis to make his life as good as could be, so his family would like to pay tribute to a few. Curtisâ most recent home nurses: Jean Dennis, Stacey Dicke, Liz Moe and Bert Thompson; his teachers and therapists at home and at TST BOCES and the Franziska Racker Centers of Ithaca and Cortland; and to his pediatrician, Dr. Shrivastava and the Buttermilk Falls Pediatrics staff.
Curtisâ family would like to send a special thank you to all the dedicated doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists and staff at both the Upstate Golisano Childrenâs Hospital PICU in Syracuse, NY, and to the Cincinnati Childrenâs Hospital in Cincinnati, OH. Their compassion for both Curtis and his family was absolutely topnotch and will never be forgotten.
Curtis is survived by his parents, Carla and David Sayles and sister Annika Sayles of Lansing, NY; his maternal grandmother Dorothy (Alex) Bengtson of Schenectady, NY; aunts, Diane (Scott) Kilbourn of Scotia, NY, Susan (Wayne) Scott of Athens, TN, Sally Sayles of Dallas, TX, Elaine (Bobby) Davidson of Athens, TN, and Uncle Stephen Sayles of Newfield, NY. Curtis is also survived by his four cousins, Kris and Cortney Davidson, and Britta and Eric Kilbourn. Curtis is predeceased by his maternal grandfather Ralph W. Bengtson and his paternal grandpa and grandma, Robert M. and Barbara E. Sayles.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to the Upstate Medical Foundation-Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, Golisano Childrenâs Hospital, 750 E. Adams St., Syracuse, NY 13210, or the Ronald McDonald House of Cincinnati, OH, online at www.rmhcincinnati.org.
A memorial service will begin at 12:00 pm, Thursday, March 13th, at Lansing United Methodist Church, 32 Brickyard Rd., Lansing, NY.