Ashley Cain has shared a heartbreaking tribute to his baby daughter, Azaylia, after revealing Sunday that she died from a rare form of leukemia.
“My heart is shattered,” he wrote on Instagram Monday alongside a photo of him holding her hand. “You gave my life purpose, my face a smile, filled my heart with love and my soul with pride. I can’t put into words my sadness and pain, there aren’t words to describe it. I love you with every ounce of my body and I miss you so much already.”
Cain, 30, a former professional soccer player and star of MTV’s “The Challenge: War of the Worlds,” had announced Azaylia had leukemia last October when she was 2 months old. Earlier this month, she was rushed to the hospital after Cain and his partner, Safiyya Vorajee, decided to stop treatment. The news came after they had learned in February that her cancer had returned mere moments before Azaylia was scheduled to ring a bell signifying the end of her treatment.
On Friday, Cain said in his Instagram story that Azaylia’s care team told the family to “make the most of this weekend.”
In his tribute posted Monday, Cain said Azaylia’s impact on him is immeasurable.
“You made me a better man. You made me the person I’ve always wanted to be. You’ve taught me more in your 8 months than I’ve learned my whole life,” he wrote. “I don’t know why you’ve been taken away from me and my heart aches in your absence.”
Cain also said Azaylia will always be a part of him.
“But I promise you that your name with live on,” his post read. “I will carry your name across every ocean, along every road, to the top of every mountain and across the whole globe.
“Your name will live, your legacy will be remembered and I will seek peace in living as your vessel to continue inspiring, giving strength, spreading joy and saving lives in your name, with your spirit, as your father until we meet again.”
Azaylia, he added, was a gift to him.
“You saved my life, you really did,” he wrote. “With my second chance, I make a promise to you that I will make yours live on in our hearts, our thoughts and our prayers.
“I am blessed, I am honoured and I am privileged to be your father. I would go through all of the pain again and again. Because what you gave me in those 8 months will live with me for eternity.”
He wrapped his post by sharing lyrics from the “Jungle Book” song “I Wan’na Be Like You” and writing his baby’s name and dates of birth and death.
“Azaylia Diamond Cain,” he wrote. “Rest In Peace Princess 10.08.20 - 24.04.21.”