Jim Bob & Michelle Duggar Attend Memorial Service For Estranged Daughter Jill Dillard’s Stillborn Baby

Trigger Warning: This story is about infant loss.

Jill Duggar Dillard and her husband Derick are mourning the loss of Isla Marie, their daughter who recently died in utero when Jill was four months pregnant. The former Counting On couple celebrated Isla’s life with a memorial service on April 19 that was attended by their friends and family— including Jill’s mom Michelle and her dad Jim Bob, the latter of whom Jill and Derick have been estranged from for years.

In photos posted by Jill and Derick on Wednesday to social media, Jim Bob and Michelle can be seen attending a balloon release service for Isla. In addition, many of Jill’s siblings– including Jessa Duggar SeewaldJackson Duggar, Joseph Duggar (and his wife Kendra and her family); Johanna Duggar and several others— also appeared in the photos from the service.

Jill and Derick– who are also the parents of sons Israel, Samuel and Freddy– announced the loss of Isla on April 13 via social media.

“It is with heavy hearts that we announce the stillbirth of our beautiful baby girl, Isla Marie Dillard, the couple wrote. “Jill was 4 months pregnant (due in August) when we found out that our baby died in utero. From the moment we found out we were pregnant, we couldn’t wait to meet our baby. Isla was much loved from the start, and her 3 big brothers were so excited to introduce her to their world.”

 

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

A post shared by Jill (Duggar) Dillard (@jillmdillard)

While Jill has remained relatively close to her mother Michelle, she and Derick have been vocal over the past few years about their estrangement from Jim Bob, making his presence at Isla’s memorial service surprising to some fans.

Jill and Derick– who wrote a tell-all book last year that described living under Jim Bob’s rules– stated back in January that their relationship with Jill’s dad and some of her siblings is still strained.

“We’re still on the road to figuring things out [with my parents],” Jill said during an appearance on of The Unplanned Podcast in January. (She added that she hadn’t seen both of her parents at the same time since their youngest son, Freddy, was born in 2022.) 

Jill also stated at the time that her relationships with many of her 19 siblings have changed since she became estranged from Jim Bob.

“…if I’m getting together with one of my siblings and things aren’t like they used to be, there’s a part of me that’s sad about that,” Jill said. “I wish things could be like they were before. But at the same time, like I talk about in the book, would I trade [going back to] ignorance is bliss, this pseudo bliss, for where were at? No. I don’t just want to go back to living in this crazy, controlling environment.”

In the comment section of Jill’s Instagram post about Isla’s memorial service, fans expressed their happiness over Jill’s family being there for her during the tragic time.

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Jill (Duggar) Dillard (@jillmdillard)

“So glad your family and friends were there to support you,” one person commented.

“Even Jim Bob is there…glad they are able to come together for the baby girl’s service,” someone else wrote.

“So sorry for your loss,” another person wrote. “It’s nice to see your family with you.” 

In a comment left on one of her own posts, Jill stated that she and Derick were “so glad to get to honor [Isla] like this and so thankful for the family and friends who helped make it possible.” 

RELATED STORY: Jill Dillard Says Parents Jim Bob & Michelle Duggar Have Read Her Tell-All Book ‘Counting the Cost’; Reveals Where Relationships with Her Siblings Stand

(Photos: Instagram; Amazon Prime; TLC)

17 Responses


  1. They had a ceremony cause they wanted to. She birthed this baby. however, the balloons never reach heaven. They just kill wildlife and get caught up in power lines. please stop this.


  2. People are saying this is over the top and I find that so weird. They want to celebrate a baby that they obviously wanted and never even got to hold alive. I don’t see why having a funeral is “over the top”. It probably helps in the grieving process and everyone coming together to recognize your loss isn’t “too much”.


  3. Can someone please explain to me if there’s a difference between a stillbirth and a miscarriage? I see those words being used interchangeably but I thought they were different things and I’m not fully understanding.


      1. In Arkansas, a stillbirth is 12 weeks or more. So she had a stillbirth.

        Source: I live in Arkansas.


    1. I’m not 100% sure but in my opinion and the way i view it is miscarriage your body expells the baby before they are viable to live, stillbirth you go through labour and physical bare the child but they never take a breath.
      I like that way of thinking because it takes away the “weeks”. When I was pregnant my baby was my baby from the positive test but you know he was different stages or embro featus and developments during the “weeks”.


    1. I thought this ceremony was a little over top, however there are 3 stages of stillborn: early, late, or term.


  4. Very sad situation. Not very common to lose a baby that far along.. and it was a girl too. How heartbreaking.


    1. She was 4 months. I’m surprised they had a ceremony as at that point it’s still considered a miscarriage. They didn’t have a ceremony for their other loss so I wonder what changed. I’m sorry for their loss regardless


      1. What changed is she would’ve had to deliver. 4mths could be deemed anywhere from 16-20wks. Depending. I lost a baby boy at 19wks. I thought I was 21wks. But he had passed earlier. I was devastated to have to deliver. But grateful to see and hold what was a very tiny but very real baby.

        A miscarriage is the blood and tissue loss. A stillborn is delivering a deceased fetus/baby.

        It comes with a lot of grief and guilt. And what they’ve done to acknowledge a wanted baby is beautiful and special. No matter how over the top anyone else thinks it is.


        1. Do you know she had to deliver? At four months she probably didn’t have to. Maybe… if she was already about twenty weeks.


          1. You can see her photo holding a baby. How else do you think it got out? Any pregnancy past 14/15wks that doesn’t naturally pass is either a delivery (due to size) or a D&C because it’s just blood and tissue. She delivered.

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