Grieving Father Creates Touching Memorial for His Disabled Son

Matthew Stanford Robinson Memorial

Photo: Enjoy Utah

When Matthew Stanford Robison was born in 1988, his parents Ernest and Anneke were told he only had hours to live. Due to lack of oxygen and complications at birth, Matthew was born with severe disabilities. He was mostly blind, paralyzed, and spoke few words. Still, he defied the odds and lived for almost 11 years, passing in his sleep in 1999.

In 2000, in order to transform Matthew's grave into a place of happiness, Ernest and his cousin Susan Cornish fabricated a touching statue that stands in memorial of the young boy's courage. The inspirational sculpture depicts Matthew climbing out of his wheelchair, healed from his Earthly burdens as he moves toward heaven. In the years since its completion, Matthew's gravesite has become a source of inspiration for people grappling with disabilities.

“Matthew was a joy and inspiration to all who were privileged to know him. He was a testament to the supreme divinity of the soul and an embodiment of the completeness our spirits yearn for. The godliness of his soul inspired, influenced and blessed all who knew him. He came into this world as a miracle and left this world as a miracle.” This portion of Matthew's obituary captures the sentiment that also inspired the Robison's to start the Ability Foundation.

Matthew Stanford Robinson Memorial

Through their own experiences, they were keenly aware that many people with disabilities are held back because they cannot afford assistive equipment. Since 1993, the foundation has helped those in need get the necessary equipment needed to gain control of their lives.

Replicas of Matthew's memorial, as well as other memorabilia, are available via the foundation's website.

Matthew Stanford Robinson Memorial

These touching words are inscribed on Matthew Stanford Robison's memorial sculpture, which is located in the Salt Lake City cemetery in Utah.

In memory of those
who walk more closely
in the hands of God

And who more humbly
the world inspiring
the hearts of men

With their legacy complete
In love, they return
home again to God

To behold his face
and be wholly healed
In joy forever more

Ability Foundation: Website | Facebook
h/t: [reddit]

All images via the Ability Foundation except where noted.

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Man Paralyzed From the Shoulders Down Uses Limited Mobility to Create Inspiring Art

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Heartwarming Portraits Highlight the Universal Beauty of All Special Needs Children

Inspirational Surgeon Operates from Stand-Up Wheelchair

Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Staff Editor and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. Since 2020, she is also one of the co-hosts of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.
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