‘Her smile was everything’: Parents mourn 15-year-old after her sudden death
THOMSON, Ga. (WRDW/Gray News) - A mother and father in Georgia were getting ready to celebrate their daughter’s sweet 16, but now, suddenly, they have to prepare to bury her instead.
Nylah Tutt, 15, died suddenly Monday. Her family and friends told WRDW she was a joy to everyone she met.
“She was put here for a reason,” said Nylah Tutt’s mom, Melinda Hudson. “I think her reason was to bring light, bring happiness and bring joy to others.”
The 15-year-old was a sophomore at Thomson High School. She was active in theater and ROTC and had big goals for her life.
“Her smile was everything,” Hudson said. “I would come home from work, and the first thing she would say was, ‘How was your day?’ Even if I come home in a bad mood. ‘My day was OK, Nylah.’ And she’d say, ‘Don’t sound like it. You got to smile.’”
Nylah Tutt had a congenital heart defect and transposition of great arteries. She was a fighter and everyone’s queen, especially to her father, Barry Tutt.
“You wouldn’t think anything was wrong with her,” Hudson said. “Nylah, when she came into this world, she came in with a lot of odds against her. It was adversity to us, but it was survival to her. She defeated all of it. She may have not defeated it on paper, but physically and mentally, it was defeated.”
Hudson says the family was preparing for Nylah Tutt’s sweet 16 birthday party. The theme was “The Fresh Princess of Bel-Air” because the teenager loved television and theater.
Now, Nylah Tutt is sitting on her forever throne.
“She served her purpose, and fortunately, she’s with the Lord now,” Hudson said. “Job well done, Nylah.”
The 15-year-old’s family, along with her classmates, decorated a rock in front of the high school Tuesday to rally behind several families grieving in the school district. Two other students have died in recent months: high schooler Megan Ebenroth died after she got an infection from a brain-eating amoeba and middle schooler Jace Simmons died by suicide.
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