Michelle Stani gave birth to her fourth child, a son named Jayden, on Christmas Eve.
Announcing her pregnancy last fall, Stani called Jayden an “Irish twin” to her 11-month-old sister Jordan, adding that he would equalize her clan – two boys and two girls.
Just three weeks later, Stani was gone. The 37-year-old died of complications from COVID-19 on January 12 at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital.
Stani could never hold her newborn son.
Family and friends are left to mourn Stani, who they called a “beautiful soul”. They launched a GoFundMe page for “significant” medical, childcare and education expenses. As of Wednesday morning, the effort had raised more than $32,000.
Additionally, Stani’s eldest daughter, Samantha, 19, has created a personalized gift list on Amazon for household items the family needs.
In addition to Samantha’s siblings, Noah, 4, Jordan and Jayden, Stani is survived by his parents, John and Susan Stani, his partner, Frank Allen, and his two brothers, Sean and Jack Stani, according to his obituary. .
Described by family and friends on social media as a lively, fun and loving woman, Stani was devoted to the children – her own and the many she cared for and taught as a daycare director. She “valued the education very much” and “enjoyed being with the children,” her obituary said.
Born in New Brunswick and raised in the Somerset section of Franklin, Stani graduated from Franklin High School and earned degrees in education from Raritan Valley Community College and Caldwell University, according to her obituary. She graduated last year from Rutgers University with a master’s degree in education, her obituary said. In October, she posted a photo of herself “rocking” her cap on the way to graduation ceremonies and planning to wear it all day.
Before graduating from RVCC in 2009, Stani told a MyCentralJersey.com reporter that necessity launched his career in early childhood education.
“I started working at a daycare (center) so I could earn money and bring (Samantha) for free at the same time,” said Stani, who added that a boss encouraged her to pursue an education. in the field because she was good with children.
Stani overcame several obstacles to reach this milestone. She once lost her apartment due to a legal dispute with the owner of the complex and was forced to seek help from a shelter. During her last semester at RVCC, she not only cared for her daughter while taking six classes, but also worked two jobs and gained experience in the field.
“When I really think about it, it’s almost like a dream, I felt like I was dreaming this was going to happen, but I could never imagine what it would feel like,” Stani said. “It’s very emotional for me, and it feels really good.”
On social media, Samantha said she was “so proud” of her mum and her accomplishments, adding that she “impacted so many people” and was an “inspiration”.
Stani loved music, especially Dave Matthews Band, and loved to dance, according to her obituary, and she loved having deep conversations, but could also be lighthearted and enjoyed making people laugh.
“Michelle was a strong, independent woman with a soft heart and a beautiful soul,” her obituary said. “He was the kind of person that if you met once, you would never forget.”
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