Marshall Clark

Just Before he Passed, This 7-year-old Boy Wrote a Heartbreaking Letter to Family and Friends

“…by the time you read this, I will be in heaven.”

Marshall Clark
Marshall Dylan died peacefully in the arms of his mother, Lara Clark

This was the opening to 7-year-old Marshall Clark’s final heartbreaking message to his family and friends. In September 2013, this bright beautiful boy with soft brown eyes from Plymouth, England was robbed of his childhood due to a rare genetic disorder in the nervous system that begins in early childhood, Late Infantile Batten Disease.

Within 18 months of the terminal diagnosis, Marshall lost everything.

He lost his vision, ability to communicate, walk or feed himself. This illness may have taken his physical freedom but it never stopped Marshall from living his life with a smile. His heart shined brighter than ever, showing his loved ones his pure soul and determination for life.

His Grandmother Elsie, a trained nurse, cared for her grandson at home. She described Marshall to the Daily Mail as a beautiful, brave little boy.

“Due to the uncontrollable seizures and tremors, he would involuntarily fall to the floor up to 40 times a day. That’s why he wore a helmet, but he took everything this disease threw at him and kept trying, kept getting back up.”

Marshall Clark
Marshall Clark who has died of Batten Disease – Pictured with grandparents Elsie and granddad Mike

He never complained or got frustrated by it.

As the disease took over every joyful aspect of his life, Elsie said Marshall never once cried, complained or gave up.

“When he lost the ability to walk, he learned to crawl. When he struggled to feed himself using a knife and fork, he swapped his cutlery for two forks and would eat one mouthful at a time. And even when he was bed-bound, unable to move or talk, he continued to smile,” Elsie shared. “

His determination and his happiness throughout it all has just amazed me.”

Marshall Clark
Elsie described Marshall as a ‘beautiful, brave little boy’, who – despite his infancy – seemed to ‘accept’ his illness

Marshall never stopped trying. Whatever cruel card the disease decided to deal him with, Marshall would accept it and continue to fight to live life to the best of his abilities.

This October 29th, Marshall wrote in his last letter to his loved ones that he will be in heaven sliding down “loads of slides,” eating strawberries and cupcakes, running around and watching his favorite videos.

He writes,

“Be happy for me that I am no longer trapped in a body that stopped me from enjoying my childhood. I am now free to do all the things I have missed so very much.”

Here is Marshall’s full message posted on his Grandmother’s Facebook:

Marshall Clark

This beautiful and brave little boy, Marshall Clark, leaves remnants of his soul through his deeply inspiring story.

He reminds us to accept the things we cannot change and to never give up.




  1. In my quiet time with God this morning, I’ve followed so many threads of thought, but this story catapulted me right into the very center of His Heart. It’s fascinating how stories like this breach every wall of resistance and unite us together…like family.

    Thank-you for this…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What a heartbreaking, yet beautiful story. He knew and lived what most of us forget, (and what beautiful parents and Nana for teaching him), that love transcends death. And that yes, he is now free of his body, free to play, and yet free to still love his family and feel the love from his family.


  3. Thank-you for sharing this wonderful story of this young man who i hope is even now experiencing a joy and peace unbounded in that Heaven he looked so forward to dwelling in. May his comfort be unending.


  4. Marshall Clark, a true Hero in the face of suffering despite his small size was a giant for humanity, hes my Hero and I look forward to meeting him in Heaven one day, May our Great God give his loved ones strength and wisdom through this terrible loss not only to them but to the world, my oh my what he would have become.


  5. So incredibly beautiful and moving, such courage from a boy. The will to move on and never give up, a hard one. But is something we should all strive for. I try. And will continue to do so.

    Such strength against such adversity. Words cannot capture.


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