Last year, the TODAY show found out about Erin Ludwig, a young mom with breast cancer whose simple wishes were to be surrounded by friends and family and to have a family portrait taken with her husband, Jason, and her two daughters, Savannah and Aubrey.
The staff of the TODAY show were touched by the young family’s story, and Hoda Kotb was able to help Erin out with her wish. She made arrangements for Erin’s friends and family members to gather together for a special surprise party and flew to Virginia Beach, Virginia, to be a part of the event. And, of course, she organized a beautiful beach photoshoot for Erin, Jason, and the girls.
Sadly, Erin passed away in March at just 35 years old. So this year, Hoda felt the need to make another special visit to help out the newly single dad and his 6- and 2-year-old daughters as they learn to cope with their life without Erin.
Hoda brought along giant teddy bears for the girls and a few special gifts for Jason. She interviewed him about what life is like since Erin’s passing and how he’s learned to do “mom” activities like braiding his kids’ hair.
“How often do you talk about Erin?” Hoda asks.
“Every day,” Jason replies. “Every single day. We’ll just be doing something, a little thing will remind me of her, and I’ll say, ‘Just like Mommy used to do,’ or ‘That’s what Mommy liked.'”
Check out the video below to see Jason and Erin’s beautiful story and to learn what Jason and his girls received to make their lives a little easier after Erin’s tragic passing.
Elizabeth Nelson is a wordsmith, an alumna of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, a four-leaf-clover finder, and a grammar connoisseur. She has lived in west Michigan since age four but loves to travel to new (and old) places. In her free time, she. . . wait, what’s free time?