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Family's faith praised at funeral for Toone siblings

LAYTON, Utah — When Rachel Toone was born in 2008, her 2-year-old sister, Rebecca, held out her arms expectantly, waiting to hold the newborn."We hold comfort in thinking Rebecca held out her arms for her sister again last Tuesday," said Doug Belliston, the girls' grandfather.Hundreds wearing yellow and pink ribbons, symbolizing the girls' favorite colors, gathered Saturday to mourn the loss of Rebecca and Rachel, who died from apparent exposure to pesticide.Rebecca, 4, died on Feb. 6, and 15-month-old Rachel followed three days later on Tuesday.Rebecca loved the color yellow and strived to be like her older siblings, Belliston said. __IMAGE1__The girl recently had taught herself to write her name, he said.Rachel loved ducks and would reach out to Belliston for hugs and kisses whenever she visited her grandparents."I can think of no greater trial than what this family is going through," said Michael Thompson, president of the West Layton Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. "But I can think of no family with greater faith."And while mourners remembered the two girls, the Toones also looked to assist others through the lessons they learned during their dark hours."While we know the unusualness of the events draw attention to our loss," Belliston said, "our hope is that we can all have greater awareness for those who suffer in less public ways."Members of the family and church leaders praised firefighters, police, medical personnel and others for their extensive service toward the family following Rebecca's and Rachel's sudden illnesses.The girls' great-uncle Richard Belliston remembered a card Rebecca had made in January, which said she knew how much her Heavenly Father loved her because of the family she had been given."I hope we can have the kind of knowledge that little children have who have so recently been with their Heavenly Father," he said.Members of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang a closing hymn at the service, "God Be With You 'Till We Meet Again." Following the services, Rebecca and Rachel were interred in Kaysville City Cemetery.


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