Lillie Cowan
2005 - 2021
Robertson Funeral & Cremation Service - Charlotte
10310-300 Feldfarm Lane
Charlotte, NC
Lillie Swaffield Cowan, 15, of Charlotte NC passed away peacefully at home with her parents by her side on Friday, July 2nd, after a courageous 26 month battle with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, a fatal pediatric brain cancer.

Lillie was born on December 27th, 2005 to Georgina "Jo" Burrows Cowan and William "Will" Swaffield Cowan, Jr., the second of three beautiful daughters born within five years. Lillie was a true "Latin Lifer" and attended Charlotte Latin School from Kindergarten through 9th grade. Despite her worsening health she was delighted to start high school last August. She loved learning, and continued to attend school from her hospital bed as long as she was able. She especially enjoyed English, History and Art.

Lillie was a true creative spirit and a lover of the arts, from theater to sculpture, painting, literature and music. She played the piano and the double bass, and enjoyed acting and dancing in school plays and musicals. She especially loved sculpting, and her Motorcycle Taco Dragon perfectly illustrated her wild imagination.

Lillie embraced life enthusiastically. She was a friend to all animals, especially pigs. She loved Japanese culture, and was excited to visit Tokyo before her death, where she roamed the local fish market sampling the most unusual delicacies she could find. Her love of life was infectious and she was responsible for all of her family's wildest adventures, from Monster Truck Rallies, to underwater cave snorkeling, to stargazing in the Australian Outback. She loved winter, the beach, the Food Network, anything Christmas, water gun fights on the Fourth of July, creating new, inventive recipes, and her stuffed animals. In fact, she loved almost everything except grilled cheese sandwiches. For some unknown reason those never made it onto her approved list.

Lillie was devoted to her friends, and loved spending time with them. She especially enjoyed returning each summer to Camp Greystone, which helped nurture her beautiful Christian faith. Lillie had a unique combination of intelligence, compassion and fierce independence, as well as courage beyond bounds. Despite being handed the cruelest card she never complained about her diagnosis or her treatment. She bravely endured what no child should ever endure, and kept on smiling, trying new adventures, and creating as long as she could. Lillie lived every day she was given, and she will be sorely missed. As one of her teachers remarked, "She had such clarity in how she saw the world. She owned who she was, embraced those whom others disregarded, and strove each day to be fully in the moment and without reservation. She was brilliant in so many ways, and my life is better for having known her."

Lillie's greatest joy was being with her family. In addition to her parents, she is survived by her sisters Isabelle Grace Cowan and Susannah McCall Cowan, of Charlotte, NC, her paternal grandparents, Johnnie and William Swaffield Cowan, of Pawleys Island, SC, her maternal grandparents, Suzanne and Brendan McInerney of Charlotte, NC and Linda and Joseph Brian Burrows, of W. Yorkshire, England as well as numerous beloved uncles, aunts, cousins, and friends.

A private funeral for family will be held at Christ Church on Friday, July 9th at 11am. The service will be live-streamed at A celebration of life will be held in September to which all will be invited. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to one of the two charities Lillie designated: The Preston R. Tisch Brain Tumor Center at Duke or

The family would like to extend their heartfelt gratitude to Dr. David Ashley, Dr. Nicole Larrier, and the pediatric neuro-oncology team at Duke. They would also like to thank Dr. Chad Jacobsen at Atrium Health, Dr Leo Wang and Dr. Shilpa Shahani at City of Hope, and staff at Novant Health and Kids' Path Hospice for their exceptional care of Lillie over the last two years. They are deeply grateful to their family, friends, the Christ Church and Charlotte Latin communities, Cancer Partners of the Carolinas, the Make a Wish foundation and all who provided endless support and encouragement throughout Lillie's journey. Robertson Funeral & Cremation Service is serving the family.
Published by Georgetown Times on Jul. 7, 2021.
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Christ Church (Private)
Live-streamed at, NC
Funeral services provided by:
Robertson Funeral & Cremation Service - Charlotte
Sponsored by Robertson Funeral & Cremation Service - Charlotte.
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18 Entries
Dear Jo, Will, Johnnie, Bill & family, We were saddened and heartbroken to hear about your precious Lily. We aren´t use to having our child or grandchild pass away so soon. God must have a special place for her in Heaven. Sending prayers that God will give you peace and strength now and in the future. We are truly sorry for your loss. Ted and Barbara McCracken
Barbara and Ted McCracken
August 6, 2021
So sorry to read about your lose. She was a beautiful child and is with the Lord now. We lost out daughter 17 years ago this month. A lost you never get over. God Bless
Jean Ingram, Essex, Md.
August 5, 2021
I am so sorry for your loss. I am not a friend of the family, I am not one of her teachers, or classmates. I was reading the obituaries when her´s originally was published. Today while talking to a friend I was reading Lillie´s to her because Lillie´s life impacted me in such a way of how beautiful she kissed the earth with her very presence. You were very blessed to have her life in your lives. I know she is dancing with Jesus & the Angels at this very moment. I just felt the need to say how beautiful her life must have been.
Crystal Diener
July 24, 2021
I did not know Lillie personally but after reading about her WISH I had. What a remarkable young lady! So sorry for everyone´s loss.
David Bailey
July 11, 2021
Dear Jo and Will, I was Lillie´s second grade assistant at Latin, and truly loved her great spirit. My husband Will has also had the privilege of being her art teacher. Thank you for sharing her with us both, Lanier
Lanier Thomason
July 9, 2021
Goodness, I am so sincerely sorry. Although I retired from Latin 3 years ago, I remember Lillie and her sweet spirit. May her kindness be a lesson to all of us. God bless you.
Irene Pointon
July 9, 2021
Dear Jo and Will, thank you for bringing us closer to Lillie. We are all enriched for knowing her wonderful zest for life and give thanks to the legacy she leaves in our hearts. May she rest in peace and my love goes out to you all, fondest love, Rich and Vitty
Vitty Robinson
July 9, 2021
Dear Jo and Will. Joining you in the celebration of Lillie's life. May God's Love bring you peace and comfort you.
Kathy Britting
July 9, 2021
What a truly beautiful service for a truly beautiful person, inside and out. Lots of love and strength to you all x
Jess S-B
July 9, 2021
Lillie was a wonderful young lady who faced her illness with grace far beyond her age. She was an inspiration to many. We are praying for her family during this difficult time.
Donna & Louis TePoel
July 9, 2021
Dear Jo, Will, Isabelle, Susannah, Johnnie and Bill, Our thoughts and prayers go with you always. Lillie was, and is still, truly Amazing. Jo and Joe Thompson
Jo Thompson
July 9, 2021
Banana Duck sends his love xx
Ed Pickard
July 9, 2021
Dearest Jo, Will and all the family - Peace be with you all as you journey on with Lillie safely in God´s care and in your hearts for ever. Much love Clare, Ed, Ben and Lottie xx
The Foss family
July 9, 2021
Dearest Jo and family, I am heartbroken over the passing of Lillie. She was such a sweet young lady! So glad I got to know her. She will forever be in my heart. May God hold you all gently in his arms, giving you strength and peace. Love to you all.
Mrs. Ruthie Earp
July 8, 2021
Johnnie and Bill ,so sorry to know you have lost your beautiful granddaughter . My prayers to you all , God blessed that child with a spirit of love and appreciation of the world he created for her ..
Betty Roberts
July 8, 2021
Dearest Jo, Will and family. I am thinking of you all with much love. Jonathan Bunkall x
Jonathan Bunkall
July 8, 2021
Jo and family my deepest condolences on the passing of Lillie.
Sue McNulty
July 8, 2021
Lillie, You are an inspiration. Sending love to you and your family. Banana Duck sends his love xx Ed & Mimi Pickard xxx
Ed Pickard
July 8, 2021
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