In a heartbreaking tweet, Kelly Cervantes, the wife of ‘Hamilton’ star Miguel Cervantes, revealed that their three-year-old daughter died on Saturday. Adelaide Grace Cervantes had severe epilepsy.
Miguel and Kelly’s daughter was diagnosed with severe childhood epilepsy around the time that her father was cast in Hamilton. Lin-Manuel Miranda, the writer of the musical, handpicked Cervantes to play the part of Alexander Hamilton in Chicago.
Adelaide had her first seizure when she was seven months old. Adelaide died just days before her fourth birthday.
Kelly Cervantes wrote on Twitter, “The machines are off. Her bed is empty. The quiet is deafening. Miss Adelaide Grace left us early Saturday morning. She went peacefully in my arms and surrounded by love. Finally, she is free from pain, reactions and seizures but leaves our hearts shattered. We love you so much Adelaideybug and forever after.”
Miguel Cervantes responded to the post with a sobbing emoji and features a mold of his daughter and son’s intertwined hands as his Twitter profile.
Kelly Cervantes also wrote a letter to her daughter on her blog last month before Adelaide entered hospice, saying, “You’ve been fighting for your life for so long and I can see now that you are tired. It is my turn to be the strongest… and let you go.”
Miguel and Kelly Cervantes have been working on raising awareness and funds to fight epilepsy. Their seven-year-old son, Jackson, has also joined the effort. He’s taught his classmates how to recognize a seizure.
Miguel told ABC7-TV, “We are fighting so that no one ever has to count how many seizures happen in a day.”
Adelaide inspired the “My Shot at Epilepsy” fundraiser campaign. The donations go to Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy (CURE). CURE released a statement saying, “Our hearts are heavy tonight with the news of Adelaide Cervantes’ passing. In her short life, Adelaide did so much to bring attention to a disease we should be much closer to curing. No child should have to suffer this way. No parent should have to sit by helplessly and simply watch as epilepsy takes a devastating toll on their child.”
In spite of their grief, the family is committed to continuing awareness efforts. Kelly said, “I want a cure for epilepsy. I want the fear that people have of talking about it, I want that fear to end. I want my baby girl to live, and I don’t get that. So I’m going to fight like hell for the rest of it.”
She wrote, “I promise you, my angel baby, that your efforts, your fight, your life will not have been in vain.”