Obituary for Lucy Sofia Hayward

Lucy Sofia Hayward, born April 28, 2020 passed away peacefully on July 7, 2023. She was surrounded by her loving parents and caring medical team at University of North Carolina Hospital in Chapel Hill, NC.

Although Lucy’s life was short, it was filled with love, fun, challenge, and adventure.

Lucy was born in Overland Park, KS and resided in Fort Leavenworth, KS for her first 2 years of life. She moved to Pinehurst, NC in June of 2022. Shortly after her birth, she was diagnosed with SCN8A-related developmental encephalopathy with epilepsy, a rare disorder which caused many medical complications. Despite these challenges, Lucy faced every day with courage, determination, and sweetness. She lit up every room with her joyful smile, and she inspired everyone who had the privilege of knowing her.

Lucy loved snuggling with her family, floating in the bath tub or pool, flying high on the swings, playing with her favorite toys, and listening to music – especially her favorite song Bubbly by Colbie Caillat, which never failed to make her smile. Her days were spent going for walks with her parents and her dog, Remy, working hard to learn new skills with her therapists, reading stories, and watching Disney movies. She was even able to dip her toes in the Gulf of Mexico and take multiple spins on the carousel at Morgan’s Wonderland in San Antonio, TX. She will be remembered for her incredible smile and her loud stories. It was a life well lived, surrounded by those who loved her dearest.

Lucy is survived by her eternally devoted parents Philip & Danielle Hayward; grandparents Gregory & Patricia Hayward, Ed Pol, and Linda Pol; uncles and aunts Isaac Hayward (Mary), Bianca Pol (Bryan Pierle); cousins Milo and Bruce Hayward; great-grandparents Susan Hurd, Harry Hurd (Susan), Ed Opperman, and Ed & Sylvia Pol.

She is preceded in death by her great-grandparents Ruth & Robert Hayward, and Norma Opperman.

Her parents wish to thank the providers and institutions that gave Lucy incredible care and support throughout her life: Dr. David Yu, Overland Park Regional Medical Center, Children’s Mercy Hospital, St. Louis Children’s Hospital, Britain Development Center, University of North Carolina, Sandhills Pediatrics, Marianna Cauthen, Christine Campbell, Mary Wilkison, and Carley Younger.

A Celebration of Life service will be held on Saturday, July 22nd at 11am at Our Savior Lutheran Church in Southern Pines, North Carolina. We invite those attending to wear bright colors in Lucy’s honor.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Lucy’s memory to The Cute Syndrome Foundation at or via check mailed to PO Box 842 Ozark, MO 65721.

Online condolences may be made at

Services are entrusted to Boles Funeral Home of Pinehurst.

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