PONTIAC, Mich. (WJBK) - It's been one week since 18-month-old Eliana Culbertson died after she was hit by a car in Pontiac.
As her family prepares to say good-bye they're helping save other lives by donating little Eliana's organs.
"My little girl was my everything," said Danielle Culbertson. "My absolute everything."
Culbertson, of Pontiac, says she lost sight of her for seconds. Curious and adventurous, 20-month old Elaina Culbertson, usually clung to her mother's side - but last week, outside their home on Warwick, the little one skipped down the sidewalk.
The toddler ran right behind a neighbor's SUV, backing out of the driveway. The horrible memories are replaying in this mother's mind.
"I ran down that sidewalk and I kept saying not my Ellie," Culbertson said. "I know kids run and they play games it only takes a second - one second - for something like this to happen.
"Running down there to go get her and swooping her up off the sidewalk ... I see her eyes rolling and me shaking her, hoping and praying."
Little Eliana fought to recover, but was declared brain dead and passed away inside Beaumont Hospital July 20th.
"Some people say there's nothing you could do," Culbertson said. "Regardless of how anybody else feels, I hate me because she's not here. I can't bring her back.
The only positive part of this mother's pain is the donation of her organs.
"She saved two kids' lives," Culbertson said. "Somebody got her heart, somebody got her lungs and liver."
The grieving mother asks everyone to consider becoming an organ donor.
"Save somebody else's life," she said. "Give someone else a fighting chance at life."
As her little angel will be laid to rest this weekend, this mother -- reminding herself:
"At least another parent doesn't have to have their heart hurt like this," she said.
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