The 10-year-old terminally ill daughter of a prison inmate — who won a battle with his jailers to see her one last time — has died of brain cancer, FOX News has learned.
Jayci Yaeger lived long enough to be reunited with her father, Jason Yaeger, earlier this week at a hospice in Lincoln, Neb.
Her story prompted a nationwide outpouring of sympathy and pleas to jail officials to let Jason Yaeger be released from a federal prison to see his little girl before her death.
On Wednesday, the family's wishes came true when prison guards escorted Jason Yaeger to the hospice where Jayci lay dying.
Jayci, who could not speak, move or eat, could sense that her father was next to her and feel his touch, because she began breathing more heavily during his visit, the family told FOX News.
But to their disappointment, the visit lasted only about 30 minutes.
Jason Yaeger, who is serving a five and a half-year sentence on drug charges in a federal prison in Yankton, S.D., had appealed to prison authorities and the courts — and even asked President Bush for clemency — to be transferred to halfway house closer to Nebraska in order to spend time with his daughter, who was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer.
He was furloughed after a barrage of letters and phone calls from around the country convinced officials to let him visit the hospital, according to KETV.com.
The girl's condition had been described as minute-to-minute, and she recently suffered a stroke.
Vonda Yaeger said Jayci went into respiratory distress three times on Thursday. She passed away at about 2 a.m. Friday morning, KOLNKGIN.com reported.
The family told that station that they hoped Jayci's father would be allowed to attend her funeral.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.