Remembering Arabella

GIRARDVILLE, Pa. -- Candles were lit in Girardville Sunday night for  3-year-old Arabella Parker.

The little girl died Friday after police say she was brutally beaten last month by her mother’s boyfriend, Jahrid Burgess, 19, of Trevorton.  Her injuries were so severe doctors were forced to remove part of her brain. Arabella spent more than a month on life support.  She was taken off her ventilator Wednesday and was breathing on her own for two days until she died.

"I was honestly hoping that she was going to make a recovery and pull through. I knew it was going to be a long road, but I was hoping for the best,” Jordan Groce of Girardville said.

Mourners who gathered in West End Park in Girardville never knew the toddler, but one organizer says as a mother she felt compelled to honor her.

"As soon as I found out about her passing, it really hit home. I couldn’t even imagine if something like that would happen to my daughter,” Amanda Groce of Girardville said.

Burgess is currently locked up charged with causing the girl's injuries, but at this time he has not been charged with her death. Arabella’s mother, Samantha Dalton. is charged with neglect and lying to investigators. Burgess' mother is also charged with obstructing the investigation.

"Stop child abuse. avoid the neglect. These children don't deserve it. You'd be surprised how many cases you see coming in and out of Schuylkill County,” Amanda said.


  • Sherrie Gualdoni

    So sad that the monster under the bed was her mother and the scum she brought in. Little Arabella never had a chance and suffered at the hands of the one person a child should trust and count on. Rest in peace beautiful Arabella, may you finally have the love you deserved.

  • nowiseenitall

    There needs to be tougher laws against child abuse especially when there is severe injury or death. There needs to be a Arabella law. This innocent beautiful little girl and others like her should never be forgotten. Please take a moment and write your congressman, the governor . If our government can pass frivolous taxes , make marijuana legal, make same sex marriage legal, they certainly can protect our children better.

    • Lisa Marshinski

      9 down? I see you’ve aggravated the ones who think what that looser did was ok. I on the other hand completely agree w/you. Child abuse is so ignored in this country, yet they’ll put cameras up everywhere. . . . for your safety ofcourse.

      • Michele Wasylyk

        I agree with harsher penalties for people who neglect or abuse children. My question is why are there harsher penalties for people who neglect or abuse animals? ( Don’t get me wrong I don’t agree with animal abuse or neglect either) It just seems wrong to not protect these babies from people who abuse and neglect them. Just look at little Arabella , how could anyone do that to her? She’s so innocent. Well, at least she’s in the arms of Jesus and no more hurt and pain for her. And for her family, may God give you comfort and peace through all of this.

    • wellmaybeido2

      This guy will likely be charged with homicide and then the regular legal system will take over. And for those who say that animal abusers get more punishment than child abusers, (there’s no direct reply button for some reason) that just isn’t true, but both should get stiffer sentences. The problem in both cases is that by the time someone knows what is happening, it’s often too late.

  • Larry

    RIP little angel, it’s a shame your mother didn’t make better life choices. I couldn’t make the vigil but when will they be holding the bring your bat and beat this low life of a person until he needs his brain removed? Please let me know so I can save the date. Thanks.

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