Last year, Brynn Johnson and Cassie Miller were just good friends.
Both mothers of two young children, they helped each other out.
But on September 16, 2014, a horrible tragedy transformed both of their lives forever.
Cassie was picking up Brynn’s son, Wyatt, to take him to preschool with her son, Easton. Wyatt was crying because he didn’t want to go and both mums were doing their best to bundle the boys into the car and send them on their way – a fairly normal start to a busy parent’s day.
After waving goodbye to Brynn, Cassie reversed the car and accidentally ran over Brynn’s 17-month-old daughter, Rowyn.
“I thought Rowyn was on the porch as I pulled out of the drive,” Cassie told the Daily Mail.
“But suddenly I felt a thump and both boys said ‘What was that?’ I will never forget looking out of the rear view window and seeing Rowyn’s lifeless body lying in the driveway.
“I saw her at exactly the same time as Brynn. I dived out of the car and as I scooped her out of Brynn’s arms to lay her in the grass and give her CPR, I saw that Brynn’s white robe was covered in blood… we were all frantically trying to save her.”
Despite their prayers for a miracle, little Rowyn died.
“I remember saying, ‘I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry,’ as I sobbed and screamed,” Cassie said.
“I was in shock and could not believe what had happened. Every single day I struggle with what I did and the guilt is overwhelming.”
But, remarkably, Brynn never blamed her friend and their friendship has continued to blossom.
The Washington mothers set up a charity together in Rowyn’s memory, which raises money for parents who go through the same heartache of losing a child.
And, when Brynn gave birth to another daughter earlier this month, Cassie was one of the first people to meet baby Myrnow – a name Brynn says is almost an anagram of Rowyn.
“She has an instant love for her just like she did Rowyn,” Brynn said.
“It was very emotional for her as well and it was so beautiful to see the love in her eyes as she held her for the first time.”
Brynn told the Daily Mail the birth of her third child was a highly emotional experience.
“It was the same hospital I delivered Rowyn and I replayed that beautiful moment throughout my labor,” she said.
“I placed Rowyn’s picture in the hospital room and I could feel her with us, watching over to make sure everything went well.
“Each day since Mynrow has been born, my heart feels just a little bit better.
“I still miss my Rowyn so so much, but I know in my heart Rowyn had a huge part in sending us the perfect little baby for our family. I feel more than ever that she is with us every second watching over our family.”