On May 10, 2018 at 11pm, in her home in Hamden, CT and surrounded by her mother and father, 6 year old Lea Doran lost her battle against DIPG. Lea was a joyful, creative, sweet and special soul who touched thousands of people. She brought communities together. She brought out the best in people. She showed us what it means to be brave. She showed us how to laugh and find joy in the face of adversity. She showed us how to love deeply and how to find the beauty in every day. She showed us what truly matters in life. From the day Lea was born, she made people smile and laugh with her bright smile, sparkling brown eyes and joyful, sometimes defiant, spirit. When Lea wasn’t present, people knew it, as she brought a “spark” to the room and exuded joy wherever she went. Even at a young age she knew who she was and danced to her own beat. She made us laugh and was a joy to be around. She took time to find the beauty in nature, reminding us to slow down, be present and “smell the roses.” Even in the face of cancer, Lea was able to be positive, smile, sing, snap and use her manners. In just nine months, Lea touched thousands of lives and brought awareness to a rare form of pediatric brain cancer. Lea’s bright light will be greatly missed. Lea is survived by her parents Michael and Christa Doran, her beloved sisters Livia and Keira, her maternal grandparents David & Tura Vancini, her paternal grandparents Michael & Marilyn Doran, her maternal aunt Kate Vancini, her paternal aunt & uncle & cousin Margaret, Jeff and James Lembke.

Family and friends are invited to go directly to St. Rita’s Church, 1620 Whitney Avenue, Hamden on Wednesday morning at 10:00 to attend a Mass of Christian burial and are also invited to attend the committal service immediately following in All Saints Cemetery.  The visiting hours will be private.  In lieu of flowers, we are requesting that you make a donation to the Connecticut chapter of the Cure Starts Now, which was started in Lea’s honor.