Mattie Miracle 2021 Walk was a $125,000 success!

Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation Promotional Video

Thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive!

Dear Mattie Blog Readers,

It means a great deal to us that you take the time to write to us and to share your thoughts, feelings, and reflections on Mattie's battle and death. Your messages are very meaningful to us and help support us through very challenging times. To you we are forever grateful. As my readers know, I promised to write the blog for a year after Mattie's death, which would mean that I could technically stop writing on September 9, 2010. However, at the moment, I feel like our journey with grief still needs to be processed and fortunately I have a willing support network still committed to reading. Therefore, the blog continues on. If I should find the need to stop writing, I assure you I will give you advanced notice. In the mean time, thank you for reading, thank you for having the courage to share this journey with us, and most importantly thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive.

As Mattie would say, Ooga Booga (meaning, I LOVE YOU)! Vicki and Peter

The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation celebrates its 7th anniversary!

The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation was created in the honor of Mattie.

We are a 501(c)(3) Public Charity. We are dedicated to increasing childhood cancer awareness, education, advocacy, research and psychosocial support services to children, their families and medical personnel. Children and their families will be supported throughout the cancer treatment journey, to ensure access to quality psychosocial and mental health care, and to enable children to cope with cancer so they can lead happy and productive lives. Please visit the website at: and take some time to explore the site.

We have only gotten this far because of people like yourself, who have supported us through thick and thin. So thank you for your continued support and caring, and remember:

.... Let's Make the Miracle Happen and Stomp Out Childhood Cancer!

A Remembrance Video of Mattie

May 28, 2013

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Tuesday, May 28, 2013 -- Mattie died 194 weeks ago today.

Tonight's picture was taken in July of 2003. We took Mattie to the Outer Banks Aquarium and as you can see he was exploring the tank where he could touch the sea creatures. A big Ray passed us by and Mattie was fascinated by the whole process. Mattie kept us moving, exploring, and engaged with the world.

Quote of the day: It's all in the view. That's what I mean about forever, too. For any one of us our forever could end in an hour, or a hundred years from now. You never know for sure, so you'd better make every second count. ~ Sarah Dessen

This morning we sat outside on our deck and ate breakfast. Having the ocean in our backyard changes the whole dynamic of your daily routine. It forces us to stop, breathe deeply, and appreciate the water, the sky, and the amazing bird traffic. I can sit for hours outside and we try to do this every morning and evening. There is so much to observe and comment on, and it is SO different from our city views in DC! This is the view from our deck.

Peter and I went to Emerald Isle Woods to walk a nature trail. The Woods is a 41 acre park in Emerald Isle, with a 1.1 mile board walk loop through trees, the Bogue Sound, and a swamp. 

Yesterday I commented to Peter that I did not think Cardinals would be around the North Carolina beach area. I answered my own question today by seeing this beautiful cutie. Mattie's favorite bird!

Along the trail, we walked out on a pier that faced the Bogue Sound and causeway. Greeting us was this lovely Great White Heron!

I find swamps very interesting, especially when I am elevated above them and can check out the trees and the little islands they seem to form around them in the water. 

Peter captured this photo of Spanish Moss. I have heard about this type of moss but have never seen it in nature. Spanish Moss absorbs nutrients (especially calcium) and water from the air and rainfall. Spanish moss is colloquially known as  an "air plant." While it rarely kills the trees, it lowers their growth rate by reducing the amount of light to a tree's own leaves. It also increases wind resistance, which can prove fatal to the host tree in a hurricane. Despite all of this, the moss looks so funny to us, because it seems like the tree has a beard!

Nicholas Sparks wrote at least two books that I know of set in the city of Beaufort, The Choice and A Walk to Remember. So needless to say, I have always wanted to see Beaufort! This is a photo I snapped while we were driving into Beaufort (pronounced -- Bow Fort, unlike the city with the same name in South Carolina which is pronounced completely different - BYOO Fort). Both quaint and bustling, Beaufort is a small North Carolina port town but with many attractions, amenities, and activities to rival any seaside destination, which is why it earned the title of "coolest small town in America" by Budget Travel Magazine in 2012. 

Settled in 1709, Beaufort is North Carolina's third oldest town. Originally inhabited by the Coree Indians in their village, Cwarioc, meaning "fish town." Beaufort was then inhabited by French Huguenots and eventually settled by the British in 1709. In 1713, Robert Turner, who held the original land grant for 200 acres, laid out the town and named the streets just as they are today. The town was named in honor of Turner's friend Henry Somerset, Duke of Beaufort, and was incorporated in 1722. Peter snapped a photo of me with this sign. The lighthouse pictured here is Cape Lookout. Peter and I will be taking a ferry to this lighthouse tomorrow! 

As the seaport became active so did the lingering pirates, one in particular you may have heard of...... Edward Teach, aka Blackbeard. He and his crew would come into the Pamlico Sound to visit and resupply, and the Beaufort Harbor became their comfortable place for rest and rejuvenation. Most were appalled that these pirates were allowed to roam the land freely and were tolerated by government officials. As you can see Beaufort is sleepy, laid back, and very understated. There is a VERY different pace in the South from the North. Frankly a healthier pace if you ask me, a pace where people enjoy conversations, pleasantries, and where the service industry is actually polite!

Still standing today are the homes of Beaufort's early sea captains, seafarers, and merchants. Beaufort boasts more than 100 homes in the historic district that are more than a century old and several private residences that are more than 200 years old. We were surrounded by charmers like this today!

Beaufort as Peter says is a boater's and fisherman's paradise! All I can say is I saw boats of ALL kinds everywhere! On land and sea!!!

What I love about NC is it capitalizes on its waterfront. Most of the restaurants face the water. We sat outside on the Front Street Grill desk this afternoon and had a lovely lunch. We were surrounded by boats and birds. No congestion, traffic, hectic noise, and NO ONE was rushing me or holding me to a schedule. I can see why Nicholas Sparks can write in NC, it is just conducive to being creative and introspective. 

I end tonight's posting with several Foundation Walk photos. Tonight's series focuses upon the new activity we launched at the Walk this year, Kid Trots. The Trots were super successful. We had trots for each age group (age 3 and under, 4-5 years, 6-7 years, 8-9 years, and 10-12 years). All the children who participated won a medal, but for the actual child who crossed the finish line first in each race, he/she obtained a wonderful prize such as a free week of summer camp at St. Stephen's and St. Agnes School or tickets to Six Flags Park. This photo is of Charley Montroll. Charley is a well known performer who entertains children throughout the DC region. Charley shared his skills with us at the Walk, got the children warmed up and energized to race!

As you can see, this was Charley in motion. He even put his guitar down to inspire the kids to sing and dance! Charley has a beautiful way about him and was extremely generous with his time and skills!

Here is a snapshot of one of the Kid Trots. Mattie's friend Emily, on the left, did a great job in this race. From where I was standing, Emily crossed the finish line first! Trailing behind the kids is our friend Ann. Ann coordinated the kid trots and she got the kids motivated, excited to participate, and in the right frame of mind to race. 

I know which age range this was, it was the 10-12 year old Kid Trot. I know this because Ellie and Abbie were racing. Mattie went to preschool with Ellie and Abbie. Ellie's mom is Carolyn (our dedicated Walk raffle chair) and Abbie's mom is Ann. 

The blond cutie here is Charlotte, or as Mattie called her, "my girlfriend." Charlotte and her friend participated in the kid trots and as you can see they proudly were displaying their medals!

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