Nicholas Alexander Gura, 5, of Montgomery, fought for years the leukemia that was afflicting his body. Although it took its toll over time, Nicholas never gave up and fought for every day. His spirit was finally released on Sunday, Aug. 16, 2009, at Loyola University Hospital, Chicago.
He was born Sept. 26, 2003, in Hinsdale, Ill. He came home to his parents and two big brothers, Zachary and Joseph II, and a big sister, Starla, in Bolingbrook, Ill. His first years were full of all the milestones that make parents proud.
In 2005, the family moved to Montgomery, and in October, Nicholas was diagnosed with Leukemia (ALL). He began a battle that would last just under four years. Nicholas was a rapid responder to his treatments, but a relapse came in October 2008.
Good news was on the horizon when, thanks to his brother Joseph, Nicholas received a bone marrow transplant on Feb. 4, 2009. Everything was shattered when another relapse came in July of 2009. Through it all, Nicholas remained energetic and showed a strength of spirit that lifted the hearts of all around him.
Everything Nicholas did made his parents smile. In difficult times, his big brown eyes and infectious smile made all things better. He loved to listen to music, and when he sang, his voice rang down the halls. Even when you met him for the first time, you recognized something special inside Nicholas that radiated with every word and step. Even though he was small, his faith was larger than life. His relationship with Jesus was one that humbled everyone he met.
Nicholas loved to play basketball, baseball and when it came to fishing, you couldnâ€™t find a more patient and dedicated angler. Wrestling, running, being chased and jumping off the couch made his laughter ring throughout the house. Chuck E. Cheese was a favorite destination, and when it came to television, Sponge Bob Square Pants and Patrick stole the show.
He also loved to play swords and left marks to prove it. Video games ruled the house when he could play Guitar Hero and on Nintendo Wii, carnival and boxing. The one thing Nicholas wanted most in life was to swim, but the doctors said he couldnâ€™t get his chemotherapy port wet. Even a trip to Disneyland paled in comparison to his wish to have a swimming pool, and that wish came true when Make-A-Wish Foundation installed one of his very own in June.
At the end of the day, questions left unanswered must stay that way. One thing is known and will forever remain true, Nicholas lives on in the hearts of his family, and anyone that he met that was lucky enough to call him friend.
He now leaves his loving parents, Sherri (nee McNulty) Gura of Montgomery and Joe Gura of Westmont, Ill.; two brothers, Zachary and Joseph II of Montgomery; two sisters, Starla of Montgomery and Skylar of Westmont, Ill; two maternal aunts, Rose (nee McNulty) Hurst and Lakeisha McNulty; two maternal uncles, Vincent McNulty and Timothy McNulty; one maternal great-aunt, Delores (nee Mitchell) Smith; two paternal aunts, Donna (nee Gura) Tadey and Dawn Gura; three paternal uncles, Jim Gura, Jeff Gura and Jerry Gura; paternal grandparents, Emery Gura and Marlene Gura; and one paternal great-grandmother, Elsie McIntyre; and many cousins and a family of friends.
He now joins his maternal great-grandmother, Alberta â€œMammoâ€ Mitchell; maternal grandparents, Lee Edward and Shirley (nee Mitchell) McNulty; two maternal uncles, Derrick McNulty and Jimmy McNulty; two maternal aunts, Ella McNulty and LeEster McNulty; his parental great-grandfather, Joy â€œMacâ€ McIntyre.
Visitation will be on Friday, Aug. 21, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. A service to celebrate his life will be held on Saturday, Aug. 21, at 11 a.m. at Conley Funeral home, with a visitation from 10 to 10:45 a.m. Interment will follow.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in his name. Checks may be made to the â€œNicholas Gura Memorialâ€ and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119 or directly deposited in his name at the Old Second Bank, Elburn branch. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com.