Grief counselors will be available for students and parents Wednesday and Thursday after student Anastasia Kopack, 10, lost a battle with cancer today.
“On behalf of the entire Lacey Township School community, we are grieving the loss of our student Ana Kopack,” Superintendent Dr. Sandra Brower said. “Our heartfelt sympathies are extended to Ana’s family and friends during this very difficult time.”
Kopack was diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare form of cancer, in March 2011. She traveled to St. Christopher’s hospital in Philadelphia often for treatments and recently underwent surgery.
Grief counselors will be available at Mill Pond School from 3:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday.
There have been countless fundraisers held for Ana from the Hebrew Park event in June and Zumba at the Lanoka Harbor School in March to a Medieval Tea Party in September.
Ana’s father Robert Kopack previously described his daughter as an “amazing kid” with a “great smile.” He also said she was “strong and has a great attitude."
"Ana is a great student and friend to all," Lanoka Harbor School Principal Rosemarie Bond previously said of Ana. Despite the challenges, she remained positive and focused on getting well, she said.
The profile on Ana's Facebook page said, "I am awesome! and...I love dogs."
Facebook has blown up with comments in remembrance and honor of Ana. People are remembering her as strong, an inspiration, special, a true fighter, a bright shining star, a princess, a beautiful person, brave, sweet, a truly amazing soul and a warrior.
Below are some of the comments people are saying. Please return to Lacey Patch for more stories on Ana in the upcoming days.
Please feel free to post your memories in the comment section of this story as well as upload photos of Ana.
If you knew Ana or met her for the first time she would melt your heart. Ana made me stronger each and everyday we spoke. She was my inspiration and always will be. Ana you are so loved and always will be and I promise you we will have that picnic one day we talked about. -Karen Crawford Norton
I remember her coming into my job with her Mom always wearing a beautiful smile! You have touched a lot of peoples hearts Ana! You are a true fighter! Rest in Peace! –Barbara Summa
You were the most beautiful person I ever met. You were so strong and always smiling every time I saw you. You made me smile and made me forget about the pain I was in. You were so brave. I will never forget your smile. -Pamela Vitale Patterson
Another angel has gone to heaven today…Ana from the many times I have met you, I can say that you have truly inspired me. You were such a strong and sweet little girl who always had a smile on. You‘ll be forever missed by your friends and family. –Patty Keene
This world recently lost an amazing little girl. A girl who could put a smile on anybody’s face, no matter what she was going through. She was one of the strongest little girls I will ever meet. Truly an amazing soul. Rest in peace Ana. You will be missed. -Renee Elizabeth Matzarazzo
Ana, she was always beautiful since she was a baby. She kept me going through the worst times of my life. She helped me through so much and I’m so proud of her. She changed my perspective on so many things. She is an angel now. She lost the battle but won so many hearts. She’s beautiful and not a day will go by that I will not remember her. She is my hero and I’m not afraid to say it. -Rachel-Lynn Inglis
Rest in paradise. You were a true fighter and left behind a great legacy for such a young age. –Kaylee Koskie
I am so thankful that I had the chance to be in the same school with a very brave little girl who fought a huge fight and was such a warrior. We are all so blessed to have known Ana and will keep her alive in our hearts forever and ever. We have all learned so much from her. She had so much hope and courage. –Tammy Wall