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This is a story that will wrench sobs from every mother, in fact anyone, who reads it. Thank you for sharing her story with us and she will remain in my thoughts though I never knew her.
I hope her little ones are finding healing and for the rest of her family, I wish you happy memories and peace.


Tears are pouring from my eyes as I sit here trying to think of the right words to type, but they aren't coming to me. I keep asking myself why was a woman at 31 years of age taken away from her two beautiful children? It seems so unfair. Thank you for keeping her memoery alive. A small part of Maddy lives in all of us.

From Matthew and Ella to Mommy

This memorium will appear in the family's local paper.

Madeleine (Little) Joiner

Oh Mummy,
We did not know you long enough!
Why can’t we see you anymore?
Feel your hugs and snuggles.

You gave us life,
Our first loving touches,
Sustenance and support,
Smiles and laughter.

Your confident love
Set the foundation of who we are,
Of who we will be,
We so wish you had been able to stay to share the rest.

You did not get to see us off to school,
Teach us to play the sports you so loved.
Take us to the field, rink, or pool,
Share our triumphs and disappointments.

Remember when we were sick or impossible,
You didn’t flinch; you were always there,
Present, with care, laughter, worry or action,
Just being you.

What spirit you gave us!
It is in our hearts
In our eyes
The way we move and speak.

Why can’t we take an airplane to Heaven?
To see you once again,
To be with you again,
Just because we miss you so.

All our lives we will be searching
For that ticket to Heaven.

From Matthew and Ella
With a little help


Thanks for sharing your reflections - so well told.

After reading your stories I was reminded of a line written by French author Elie Wiesel: "... and here I am crying because I have nothing left to say".

Maddy's Uncle Tom

Patti B.

Today I will hug my children a little harder becuase of Maddy, and love those around me just a bit more because of Maddy. I will hold my thoughts that are not as positive as they should be and embrace all that I have because of Maddy. I am grateful for being able to do all this, for tomorrow is another day and I know not what it holds. Today I will think of Maddy and share her memory.


I never met Madeleine, but I've spent a lot of time thinking about her and the people she loved and left behind. When I read your beautiful tribute, I sat at the computer for a while crying. My son asked what was making me sad and I told him that it wasn't just that I was sad, but that I was very happy too.

I don't think you could have offered a more fitting tribute to your cousin than reminding us all of how fortunate we are and giving each member of the community the opportunity today to spend a little time being thankful for those in our lives.


What a beautifully written tribute and what wise words for us all...especially as we enter such a busy season where precious moments can be lost in the shuffle.

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