ella’s life can be summed up in simple terms. She was very active. To those that did not know her she was just another child with a disability, someone to be pitied and ignored. But to her friends and family, she was a dynamic personality with a can do attitude. Her goal in life was to show others what she could do, not to sit by and watch the world pass her by. Life presented many challenges to her, but she responded by being stronger than 100 men. And she met those challenges with a smile that would light up a room. She would not accept sitting on the sideline. She would not be a spectator; she would be a participant in the game. Here are some of the things that she accomplished or aspired to:

1. Was a member of the brownie troop 714
2. Active in the Muscular Dystrophy Association
3. Loved to swim
4. Reading was a passion of hers
5. Started using a computer and Googling at the age of 3
6. Kept pushing herself to be self sufficient
7. Always had a kind word for anyone she talked to
8. Wanted to be a singer

Bella's favorite color was pink. She always had to have pink around. Her favorite stuffed toy was a pink puppy. She really loved that pink puppy, so much so that it started to fade from all of the use it was put through. Her favorite books were any of the Pinkalicious series. She combined two of her passions, the color pink and her love of reading, into one activity.

Another highlight of her life was the day she got a new powered wheelchair, the Herrera house needed to be outfitted with traffic signal lights and stop signs. She would zip all around in her chair, enjoying this new found freedom. Tasks that may have been difficult before now became easier, with Bella volunteering to get things for her family members. For a long time, her best friend, her sister Ava, would do things for her. And now Bella was able to return the favor.

She even found a unique way to answer questions about her disability. When a young man once asked her why she was in a wheelchair, she answered quite honestly, “Because God made me special.” This was truly a simple answer and yet so full of wisdom.

Bella is not here in body. She has departed to somewhere that people have tried to explain for years. But she will be with us always. She is no longer bound by a physical body. She is in our minds and in our hearts. The memories we have of her cannot be taken away. We can talk to her anytime we want and she can hear us. We are sad but happy for her. She is where there is no pain. She can walk and dance and sing, just like she used to dream of. Children are special and they go straight to heaven, no questions asked. She is in a place where nothing can hurt her ever again. And she will be waiting for us, no matter how long it takes.

Today, and every day.......we remember Bella.