The loved ones of Everybody Loves Raymond star Sawyer Sweeten gathered on Sunday, May 3, to say their final goodbyes to the late 19-year-old, ‘People’ magazine reports.
His family allegedly wore blues and greens — his favorite colors — to his funeral in Riverside, Calif.
Family members — including his twin brother, Sullivan, and his stepfather, Jerry Gini — served as pallbearers as they loaded the casket into a hearse, which was driven by a motorcycle because, as his stepfather fondly remembered, “He loved his Harley-Davidson.”
After several relatives shared their memories and honored his legacy, his mother, Elizabeth Gini, spoke last, bidding farewell to her child in an emotional eulogy.
“From the moment I knew you were to be born, I was overjoyed, which was only made more joyful when six months later I found you were to be a twin. My heart was filled with anticipation and love, but in the back of my being there was also fear.
“I was fearful of losing you, but I pushed those feelings deep down and found delight in carrying you… I’m grateful for all my memories and every moment we shared. You confided your hope and dreams in me and I encouraged you along the way.
“I will miss sending and receiving funny cat videos, your hugs, our talks. But most of all, I’ll miss your little hands holding mine. They were forever printed in my heart.
“My physical time with you is over now. So, son, you put those hands that I held for 20 years, one on your baby sister and one in God’s hand, and guide her along this journey until I can hold you both again.
“And tell God, ‘Thank you’ for me. And tell him how grateful, lucky and privileged I feel that he chose me to be your mom and I hope I made him proud. And I will help guide those who you left behind until we are called up to be with you.
”I hold you with my whole entire heart, Mom.”
— Lizz G 🌊 (@GiniMomof9) January 9, 2014
His mother didn’t elaborate on her daughter who preceded the young actor in death. However, his family did share their hopes to build an outdoor play area for cats in his memory, as this one-time aspiring veterinarian was passionate about his furry friends.
Sawyer tragically took his own life on April 23 with a gunshot to his head. The 19-year-old was at his family’s home in Texas at the time.
To read his mom’s speech in its entirety, head on over to ‘People Magazine.’
If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255)