At just 8-years-old, Salvador Rios IV made a big impact in the Alice community by showing them how to enjoy life as he dealt with the biggest battle of his life, cancer.
On Sunday, his parents posted to Sal's Journey of Hope Foundation Facebook page, that Salvador IV had passed away at home with his parents and sisters.
Rios is the son of Elena and Salvador Rios III. He was diagnosed with a brain tumor in 2013 at the age of 2.
"Early this morning, I lost a piece of my heart, my only son. I miss you and love you so much. I wish you were still here with us, but knowing that you're in a better place," they posted. "I know that God took you in his arms and gave me wings. My beautiful boy, I don't know what I'm gonna do without you. R.I.P my son."
Salvador IV had several surgeries and treatments in his life as he fought against the disease. Salvador IV and his family raised Childhood Cancer Awareness in the community.
He attended Saenz Elementary, loved to watch the Paw Patrol and the outdoors.
"We did all we could, but we hoped there was more that we could've done... We're devastated. But he lasted this long," Elena said. "We've learned to appreciate things more because of him...It's hard. We have so many emotions. We want to cry. We want to yell. We want to be mad at the world. I fell like I have this knot that doesn't go away."
Everyone has a purpose in this world. Elena believes that her son's purpose was to encourage others to never give up. He always had a smile on his face or was making funny faces at his family especially during treatments, she said.
"He never let the disease get the best of him. He never let it get him down. He continued to push himself," Salvador III said.
Salvador IV's services will be held at Rosas Funeral Home. His rosary is set for Thursday, Sept. 12 at 7 p.m. and the funeral and mass will be Friday, Sept. 13.
His parents ask that anyone who plans to attend not to wear black. Instead, they ask that everyone wear yellow, gold, white or blue.
Yellow, gold and white represent Childhood Cancer Awareness month which is in September. Blue was Salvador IV's favorite color.