On March 17th, 2001, Ariel Salomé Jean-Baptiste greeted the world as the firstborn of Watson and Priscilla Jean-Baptiste. As foretold, she was confirmed with Edwards Syndrome or Trisomy 18, a rare chromosomal abnormality often fatal before birth or within the first year of life. Notwithstanding the odds, Ariel defied science. Blessed with a village rooted in faith and love, as well as a team of formidable specialists, Ariel thrived beyond toddler years to attend several specialized schools in Nassau, Putnam, and Westchester counties. On her fourth birthday, Ariel welcomed her first sibling Abigail, which led to a series of yearly dual celebrations forever engraved in our hearts. Years later, her brothers Anthony and Andrew completed the pack. Ariel enjoyed interacting with everyone, and often expressed her gratitude with her trademark smile, foot, or hand gesture. A short or lengthy encounter with Ariel was synonymous with experiencing the hallmark of absolute humility. While counterintuitive, especially with new onset of seizures at puberty, road trips along with family and community functions afforded Ariel a full life. Her zeal to overcome a myriad of health challenges was comparable to her numerous lifechanging deeds. Irrespective of her developmental and cognitive limitations, her contribution to the less privileged through her caretakers and family network was noteworthy. At 18, she received her First Holy Communion, a groundbreaking event which catapulted interest in establishing a special needs religious education program at Holy Family Church. At the Bridge School in Rye Brook where she spent nearly nine years, Ariel held the highest attendance record, inclusive of pandemic times. Surrounded by her parents, Ariel assumed heavenly wings on that sunny morning of May 16th, 2022. A peaceful smile followed as she ascended to her creator.
In lieu of flowers, kindly consider a gift to the Ariel's Gift Fund for Religious Education.
Click the link below to make a One-Time Donation, and put "Ariel's Gift Fund" in the Comments
Holy Family Church will live stream Ariel's Funeral Mass please use the link above to watch.
Ariel's Gift Fund for Religious Education