Hallmark star Nikki DeLoach revealed on Instagram that her father has died. After she told followers on social media that her heart was shattered, fans and friends alike gathered on her page to wish her condolences, sympathy, and messages of encouragement.
‘You Were My First Love,’ She Shared
In a heartbreaking message on Instagram, DeLoach revealed to fans and friends that her heart is shattered after her dad died, but she was able to be with him in his last moments.
Daddy, You were my first love. My first words were the first words you spoke to me every morning as you scooped me up from my crib. “Hey there” you would say with the biggest, most joy-filled smile. You gave the best hugs. Oh, what I wouldn’t give for just one more hug.
You gifted me with your passion for music. You were the best dance partner, my favorite duet. You taught me kindness, to always lead with a service driven heart. You were my moral compass, my true north. You loved me fully, completely, and unconditionally. And I loved you fully, completely, unconditionally.
My heart is shattered. The hurt is so deep and big that it just burns. And at the same time, I rejoice that you are no longer suffering. You are no longer a prisoner to that disease. Your peace is my peace. You are no doubt dancing in heaven now with my Papa, singing James Taylor and sprinkling kindness and love like soft, glittery rain upon us all.
I’ve prayed so hard that no matter where I was in the world, I would make it to your side to hold your hand, walk you home.
There were a hundred tiny miracles that happened to get me to you, a divinely woven plan. I will eventually share these details for it is a true testimony to the power of God and of the love and soul connection we share. You waited for me. And I will never be able to fully thank you. But I promise to let your legacy of kindness and love live on in everything I do. I love you, Dad… until the the end of time and beyond.
To all of you who have prayed for my daddy and my family, thank you so much from the whole of my heart. I will never forget it.
DeLoach has been upfront and open about her father’s struggles. In 2018, she spoke with the Alzheimer’s Association about how her father had Pick’s disease, a form of frontotemporal dementia. Her father was diagnosed the same year that her son had open-heart surgery.
“Both experiences were extraordinarily challenging and traumatic, however, my faith has grown exponentially,” she said.
She explained that she’s open about her father because she wants to help others who may be going through something similar.
When it came to Dad’s diagnosis, I said to my family: ‘People want to help us. People want to reach out. There are other people going through this, and we will never know how sharing our story may help another family.’ When I know someone else is going through what I am going though, it helps me as much as it helps them. It helps us all feel less alone. I want people to be able to speak more openly about the help they need, because I have been there, and I know how important it is.
She shared that the disease had changed her father’s personality. He lost his patience that he once had and his memory sometimes didn’t seem to last longer than 60 seconds. She said he had always prided himself on looking sharp, but they had trouble getting him into clean clothes after his diagnosis.
She said he was only 64 when he was diagnosed.
Friends & Fans Shared Messages of Love & Sympathy
In just hours after her post, friends and fans had gathered to share notes of love and sympathy.
Alicia Witty wrote: “oh nikki. sending you so, so much love- this tribute has me in tears as i know it does so many reading it right now. i know he’s smiling down seeing these words ❤️❤️❤️❤️”
Danica McKellar wrote: “Oh Nikki! 💔 My grandmother passed 10 years ago years ago and it was heartbreaking because of how close we had been my entire life – she truly was like a parent to me. I discovered that the best way to honor her life was to emulate the things I admired so much about her. To ‘be’ her. You embody all of the wonderful things are say here about your father. You are a light in this world, Nikki.”
Miranda Bailey wrote: “Nikki. You know I love you. I am praying for a swift healing clarity and acceptance for you. Your father was an amazing person to raise you as special as you are. I am grateful to him. I love you. My condolences to your family.”
Erin Krakow wrote: “Nikki, I’m so very sorry. I’ll be thinking of you and your family, and sending you so much love! 💕”
Justin Timberlake replied with three hearts.
A fan named “LeslieLovesHallmark” wrote: “Nikki, I am so very sorry for your loss. Lots of prayers for you and your family during this time. Dementia is a terrible disease. My daddy suffers from it also.”
Another fan shared that her husband had the same illness, writing: “My husband suffered the same illness and it is a daily heartbreak, but still I miss him everyday even while I know he is finally happy in heaven looking down on our big family no longer hindered by his illness!”
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