Eufaula teen remembered by community

EUFAULA, Okla. -- The community of Eufaula is mourning the loss of a teenage boy who passed away this week.

Ajay King died Sunday after a year and a half long battle with bone cancer.

"At 15-years old, [he] made the decision to not seek treatment anymore," Tephanie Neill, Ajay's nurse for the last year, said. 

Neill said he decided he did not want to be sick anymore. 

"We promised him -- his family and I -- we told him we would make sure he smiled every day and he did," Neill said. 

Between Neill, Ajay's family and the Eufaula community, the promise was kept. 

The teen was made an honorary football captain for the Eufaula Ironheads. Eufaula High School held a special graduation to give him an honorary diploma. He was recognized by the Governor and made an honorary police officer. 

"Every law enforcement agent who was able got on the radio going, 'Ajay, congratulations buddy. This is your day,'" Neill said. "Ajay was beaming. It was an amazing experience."

Neill said Ajay ate a different home-cooked meal every day made especially for him by someone in Eufaula. She said he liked to try different things. 

Just a few weeks before he passed away, Ajay turned 16-years old. He had a party and was surrounded by friends and family. 

Neill said she does not want him to be remembered as someone with cancer, because he so much more than that. She said he was a fighter and made her a better nurse, mom and friend. 

"He never ever one time goes 'Why me?' Why did this happen to me?'" Neill said. It was always 'Let's just make the best of it'. He always saw the glass half full."

With the help of law enforcement, Ajay will have a full honors funeral this Thursday at Eufaula Middle School. 

The high school will let out of class early so the students can attend. 

 

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