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Emerson J. Barbaro, 10

Emerson Jean “Emmi” Barbaro, age 10, of Fayetteville, NC, passed away Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012, while sledding with her best friend and brother, Julian, and her two cousins, at their grandparents’ home in Dassel.

She is survived by her mother and father, Heather and Richard Barbaro; five brothers: Ryan of Dexter, MI (his wife, Devon and children Andrew, Dane, Mae, Nora); Justin of Fayetteville, NC (his fiancée Callie); Brandon of Chapel Hill, NC; Colin of Chapel Hill, NC (his fiancée, Lauren); and Julian of Fayetteville, NC; and her grandparents, Barb and Craig Kay of Dassel.

Emmi is further survived by great-grandparents Orval and Alice Lea of Rushford; her Aunt Pamela and Uncle Eric Sandstede of Dassel; Aunt Carrie and Uncle Joel Harmala, and cousins Greta, Ryan, and Darby, of Pequot Lakes; Aunt Leah Kay of Duluth (her friend, Michael Clark); Aunt Jeanette Bratti of Wantaugh, NY; and Aunt Kathy and Uncle Charles Prentice of Inverness, FL.

Emmi only lived 10 short years, yet she touched the lives of many. She loved Jesus and she loved life! She woke up every day with a smile on her face and joy in her heart.

Emmi was a great soccer player for the Fayetteville Force; ran several 5K races; completed two triathlons; and loved to swim, tumble, and flip. She dreamed of competing in the Olympics one day, loved to sing, believed in Santa Claus, and savored the good in all people.

Emmi conquered her small world with luminous laughter and boundless energy. She was never ready for bed, but always the first one up to start a new day.

There were few things that Emmi wasn’t truly good at. She welcomed any challenge with relentless determination. She was never afraid of defeat, and win or lose, the result was always the same – a beaming smile from ear-to-ear. Emmi’s small frame carried a big personality, and an even bigger heart.

Unfortunately, a tragic accident ended her life here on this earth. She now sings and plays for Our Lord in Heaven, and will be missed very much.

A celebration of life service took place Wednesday, Jan. 2 at 6 p.m. at Manna Church in Fayetteville, NC, preceded by visitation from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the church.

Visitation also took place Thursday, Jan. 3 at Jernigan-Warren Funeral Home in Fayetteville, NC from 6 to 8 p.m.

Emmi had been trying to raise money for the American Heart Association: Jump Rope for Heart. In lieu of flowers, please consider going to her blog: www.ForeverMissed.com Emerson Barbaro and leave your memories and consider a donation in her name.

Arrangements were handled by Jernigan-Warren Funeral Home of Fayetteville, NC.