Couple pays it forward in Positively JAX fashion after losing 3-month-old daughter

This month's Positively JAX winner has turned tragedy and heartbreak into something beautiful. A family whose daughter died of a rare heart and lung condition now makes sure other families with kids in the hospital don't have to worry about the little things.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – This month’s Positively Jax winner has turned tragedy and heartbreak into something beautiful.

Team A.Maise consists of a family whose 3- month-old daughter died of an extremely rare lung condition on Nov. 3, 2019.

Ashlyn Maise Leide was hospitalized for a month in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Wolfson Children’s Hospital. During their stay, the family received much-needed care packages.

Eric and Heather Leide were broken, but they had this support to help keep them together.

“We witnessed a lot of kindness and generosity when we were there. I mean, when you’re in that room, you feel like you’re all by yourself. But the community was reaching out, people in the hospital giving us things and donating just trying to make our day special,” Heather Leide said.

These care packages helped give them a sense of comfort and normalcy despite the stress of a sick daughter. Ashlyn passed away a month after that hospital stay and now the family pays it forward with the same type of support they received.

“It’s stuff you really don’t think about, like we have a snack bar, and coffee cart, because sometimes like with our daughter, her health was fluctuating, and we couldn’t leave her bedside. So just to be able to go outside the room, get a cup of coffee, or if you are hungry, a protein bar or snack,” Leide said.

Melanie Lawson talks with Team A.Maise, who tell us how they turned personal tragedy into an opportunity to make a difference for other people.

Team A.Maise makes monthly deliveries to UF Health and Wolfson Children’s Hospital to provide snacks, coffee, comfort carts and their latest idea -- a clothing pantry.

“We had the luxury that we can tag team and go home and get clothes, but we’ve met families that they were in a car accident on 95 and they didn’t have anything. They had no clothes except what was on their back,” Leide said.

So far, they’ve made more than 89,000 donations in just two short years.

“We know that we’re reaching out to people. We just didn’t know how much of an impact,” said Leide.

It is not only Positively Jax, but it’s also nothing short of amazing.

For more information or to make a donation to Team A.Maise, go to their website:

About the Author:

Anchor on The Morning Show team and reporter specializing on health issues.