HYRUM, Utah (ABC4 News) – Nichole “Nikki” Clark’s family is struggling to make it through each day without the freckle-faced 11-year-old they love.
“It’s so hard to wake up and not have your baby girl,” Kevin Clark, Nikki’s father, said.
Clark tried to help his daughter when a wooden blind rod pierced her chest.
Despite previous reports, he said Nikki’s accident happened on Saturday. She was playing outside their Pleasant View house with the family’s dogs and the wooden rod.
Nikki tripped and the rod stabbed her upper left chest near her clavicle. It missed bones and pierced a main artery that ran down her left arm.
By the time Nikki was taken to McKay-Dee Hospital in Ogden she had lost too much blood and later pronounced brain dead.
“I can’t believe a little accident could be this much,” Clark said.
Nikki’s grandparents, who live in Hyrum, said the family’s decision to take her off life support broke their hearts.
“But being selfish and holding onto someone that isn’t that someone anymore... That wouldn’t have been our Nikki,” Grandfather Robert Allan Page said.
Her grandmother, Joy Page, said she misses Nikki’s foot rubs. She called Nikki her little helper and an angel.
“I can’t fathom going on without her,” Page said, with tears in her eyes. “I just can’t.
Nikki’s two older sisters and cousins have key chains with her name and a locket of her hair attached to it.
The mementos were provided by McKay Dee Hospital in Ogden. The family expressed their thanks and gratitude for the doctors, nurses and staff that helped Nikki during her stay.
Friends and strangers have overwhelmed Nikki’s family with donations and support.
One woman has offered to buy the girl’s plot at Hyde Park Cemetery so Nikki can be buried next to her great grandmother. A company has graciously offered to build Nikki’s headstone.
The family also expressed their thanks to the friends and strangers who have comforted them during this difficult time.
“She said she was always going to be the one to take care of us when we get older,” Clark added. “I never planned it to go this way.”
A viewing for Nichole will be held Friday, Nov. 23, 2012 from 6pm to 8pm at Nelson Funeral Home in Logan.
Her funeral will be Saturday, Nov. 24, 2012 at noon with burial to follow at Hyde Park Cemetery in Hyde Park, UT.