Terminally ill 8-year-old who asked for letters from dogs for comfort dies

MADISON, Wis. - The terminally ill Wisconsin 8-year-old who asked for letters from dogs to comfort her died Sunday afternoon. 

According to a Facebook post from her family's page that follows her fight with a rare and inoperable brain tumor called DIPG, Emma Mertens died in her parents' arms shortly before 4 p.m. 

According to a GoFundMe page, Team Emma raised nearly $137,000 for financial support. 

In February, the family also asked for help in comforting Emma, putting a flier on social media asking people to send letters to Emma from their dogs, either written or in email form with photos or videos attached. 

According to Emma's CaringBridge page, her email inbox was completely full in February with more than 2,500 emails, as was her Hartland, Wisconsin, P.O. box. 

In lieu of gifts and flowers, Emma's family is asking for her memory to be kept alive by supporting her foundation at 

Emma's family plans to livestream Emma's funeral service on her Facebook page. 

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