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Obituary of Shaun M. O'Brien
Our wonderful 19-year-old son and Hanna’s best friend, Shaun Michael O’Brien, of Anamosa, Iowa, passed away at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital on June 3, 2018 after a three-year battle with acute myeloid leukemia. He was surrounded by his family, with his sister holding his hand until the end.
Shaun was born on February 11, 1999 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He was diagnosed with AML at the age of 16 in 2015. In May of 2016 he relapsed. Thanks to an anonymous bone marrow donor at the time, he received stem cells that saved his life and allowed him 15 fabulous cancer-free months. February 9, 2018 Shaun relapsed again. He received a second bone marrow transplant on May 25, 2018, but his heart failed nine days later. Without his first donor, Shaun would have passed away. Please sign up on the bone marrow registry and help save a life, like Miranda saved Shaun’s, at www.bethematch.org. Thanks to everyone who donates blood, platelets, and plasma. Shaun received countless transfusions during his leukemia fight. Become a blood donor and save lives!
Shaun was homeschooled, graduated at the age of 16, and started in Kirkwood’s CNC Machining program. He also loved his work and coworkers at D and R Engines. Shaun’s passions were to spend time with his sister, family, and friends, fish, shotgun and bow hunt, drive his car, motorcycle, and boat, work on vehicles, engineer anything, and be outdoors. He also loved his and Hanna’s dogs, Rusty and Sandy.
Shaun is survived by and touched the lives of everyone he met during his time on Earth: The Schilling and O’Brien family members, friends, neighbors, coworkers, instructors, students, mentors, nurses, doctors, fellow outdoorsmen, the tremendous group of people that followed and supported him throughout his illness, and countless others he met during our travels.
During Shaun’s last week of life, he enjoyed listening to the band Alabama. Although he was a young man, the legacy he left for us to admire is to be kind, brave, thankful, loving, thoughtful, giving, inspirational, honest, respectful, passionate, hardworking, happy, polite, and to love life. We do believe Shaun was an “Angel Among Us.”
A funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, June 7, 2018, at St. Patrick’s Church in Anamosa, Iowa. Shaun was a causal guy, and we encourage causal attire for those attending. There will be no burial or reception following the service.
We want to thank everyone who supported our family during Shaun’s cancer battle. Thanks to the doctors and nurses who took great care of him. To share a thought, memory or condolence with Shaun’s family please visit the funeral home website @ www.gayandciha.com. Many thanks to Dan from Gay and Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service in Iowa City, Iowa.