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Man searches for years to find family of child cancer patient in order to give them painting she made before her death

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Photo by CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT/AFP via Getty Images

A Texas resident has returned a beautiful piece of artwork to its late creator's parents, sparking warm emotions and memories of the 8-year-old girl who created it.

What are the details?

A KOKH-TV report detailed that Jim Higgins, who purchased a painting from an auction in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, that was sponsored by the Oklahoma University Children's Hospital, decided to return the painting to the child artist's parents following her death.

Higgins purchased the piece — a collage-style painting created by an 8-year-old girl named Hope — approximately 10 years ago, saying that it was "one of the best ones" at the auction.

Higgins said that he met the child's parents at the auction and learned that their daughter suffered from a rare and terminal form of brain cancer.

Just a few years after the auction, Hope passed away — and keeping up to date on his donation to the children's hospital, Higgins decided to embark on a journey to reunite the painting with Hope's parents.

It took him nearly four years, however, before he was able to track down the family, and decided to enlist the help of a local TV station.

Feeling that he was running out of options, he reached out to KOKH, who ultimately helped track down Hope's parents, Chad and Bridget Dollarhide.

Within hours of Higgins' request, KOKH was able to get a hold of the Dollarhide family and set up a reunion with Higgins.

The family met with their benefactor on Wednesday and received their late daughter's artwork.

Bridget said that having her daughter's artwork returned was moving beyond compare.

"That gives me such a warm feeling," she told the station. "She's still spreading her brand of hope even though she's not with us anymore."

Bridget said that she fondly remembers Hope's process in creating the artwork.

"She had so much fun," Bridget told the station. "That was like the highlight of her days in the hospital was working on that."

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