May 27 2016
Avalanna Routh was remembered yesterday by her parents, family, Justin Bieber and Beliebers on the second anniversary of her death. Routh died at age six from a form of brain cancer – atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor – that mostly affects children.
Diagnosed when she was just 9 months old, Avalanna lived longer than doctors expected due to chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatments.
In an article published last year, her mother Aileen Roberts Routh described her daughter as “so little, yet she was so big… She had the beautiful gift of spreading her joy wherever she went.”
A big Bieber fan, Avalanna was nicknamed “Mrs. Bieber” because of her adoration for the star, whom she met for the first time in February 2012 in New York City for a Valentine’s Day date. The meet took place after a Routh family friend created the Facebook page “Get Avalanna to Meet Justin Bieber.”
At that first meet, the little girl and her family played board games, feasted on cupcakes and threw a “pretend wedding” with Bieber. Afterwards, the singer tweeted: “That was one of the best things i have ever done. she was AWESOME! feeling really inspired now #MrsBieber.”
Avalanna met Bieber on subsequent occasions. These included the pop star serenading her at his Harlem Apollo show in June 2012 for a rendition of “One Less Lonely Girl.” The pair also appeared on the Today show together that same month.
Aileen Routh said of her daughter’s relationship with the singer: “One of her greatest adventures was meeting Justin Bieber. In typical Avalanna fashion, she was completely unfazed by Justin’s fame.” She adds, “She fell in love with a cute boy who was mesmerized by our girl because she radiated life, love, laughter and so much mischief. She was the light of our lives and still shines so bright.”
In 2008, Routh’s parents created the Cure AT/RT Now foundation together with the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Her mother said her daughter’s “unique relationship” with Bieber “created a global awareness for AT/RT.”
Fundraising continues and has included a “Meet Justin Bieber” event. Funds are directed to Dr. Charlie Roberts, a doctor at the institute committed to finding a cure for AT/RT.
On the day of Avalanna’s death, Bieber tweeted:
just got the worst news ever. one of the greatest spirits i have ever known is gone. please pray for her family and for her. — Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) September 26, 2012
Justin has previously paid tribute to Avalanna’s life and passing, singing “One Less Lonely Girl” to pictures of the little girl at the opening night of his Believe world tour on September 29, 2012.
After that show, the heartthrob tweeted, “Goodnight Avalanna. Tonight was for u. I love u.” A month later, the singer tweeted about Routh on what would have been her birthday. “Today would of been the 7th Birthday of Mrs. Bieber. @Avalanna you changed my life. We will all celebrate you today no matter what. love u.”
On Friday, #2YearsWeMissYouAvalanna trended on Twitter as Beliebers around the world marked the second year anniversary of a huge loss.
We will never forget our Mrs. Bieber. Love you @Avalanna. Thank you for being a part of my life. I miss you. #2YearsWeMissYouAvalanna
— Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) September 27, 2014
For his part, Bieber has honored the only girl he has ever “married” with a message that still remains – at press time – at the top of his Twitter feed.
Justin Bieber didn’t forget Avalanna Routh, and it’s unlikely he ever will.