Family Finds Hidden Message on Mirror—Then They See Who Wrote It…

After the death of a loved one, most people would do anything to hear one last comforting word from their lost family member. Dean Orchard and his wife, Caroline, got to do just that.

Their 13-year-old daughter, Athena, lost her fight to bone cancer osteosarcoma, leaving behind three brothers and six sisters. She died in her father’s arms.


Athena’s death left Dean Orchard and his family distraught

Athena found a tiny lump on her head and received the diagnosis when she was just 12 years old. She was given one short year to live her young life to the fullest—and she did just that.

One day after Athena’s death, her dad was going through some of his daughter’s old things when he came across a secret 3,000-word message scrawled on the back of a full-length mirror in her bedroom.

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The mirror’s backside was covered top-to-bottom with the passionate last words of a courageous teen whose wisdom shines far beyond her years.

“She never mentioned it, but it’s the kind of thing she’d do,” said Dean. “She was a very spiritual person, she’d go on about stuff that I could never understand—she was so clever.”

“We’re keeping the mirror forever, it is a part of her we can keep in the house, it will always be in her room,” her mother Caroline added.” Just reading her words felt like she was still here with us, she had such an incredible spirit.”

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Kelsey Straeter
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Kelsey is an editor at Outreach. She’s passionate about fear fighting, freedom writing, and the pursuit of excellence in the name of crucifying perfectionism. Glitter is her favorite color, 2nd only to pink, and 3rd only to pink glitter.