Mattie Miracle Walk 2023 was a $131,249 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

November 2, 2017

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Thursday, November 2, 2017 -- Mattie Miracle is 8 years old!

Tonight's picture was taken in April of 2009. After Mattie's birthday. Mattie celebrated his 7th and last birthday in the hospital. This was the photo I snapped of Mattie as he was headed home after this particular infusion of chemotherapy. Unfortunately however, Mattie would always run a fever about two days post treatment, and would then be re-admitted to the same floor you see here. Nonetheless, I wanted to capture a moment of happiness Mattie had, because he truly loved all the balloons he received for his birthday. Since today is the 8th birthday of Mattie Miracle, it seemed only appropriate to highlight this photo.

Quote of the day: Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other. ~ Abraham Lincoln

When I stop and reflect on what we have accomplished over the last 8 years it is amazing. Others may not say it or see it, but given I know this advocacy space, it is a feat. We are slowly working on changing the message of how childhood cancer treatment is provided, and change is never easy. I recall when Mattie Miracle was first established in 2009, a leader in the childhood cancer space approached us and wished us luck. Basically saying that most non-profits fade and end after 5 years. If they make it that long! That comment stays with me even today. I can picture that conversation as if it happened yesterday, and what this person did not understand is I am NOT the kind of person that handles NO well! I almost found her pessimism a challenge! A challenge that Peter and I continue to meet and rise to each year. 

This morning I posted a happy birthday message on our Foundation Facebook page. Before posting, I consulted with Peter and his sage advice was..... tally up the number of children and families we have supported. Typically I only report the services (through our child life specialist and snack carts) we provide per year, but honestly when I added up the numbers it was outstanding!
So Happy 8th Birthday Mattie Miracle!!! The Foundation was incorporated on November 2, 2009, two months after Mattie died. Thanks to our steadfast and generous supporters throughout the years, look what we have accomplished together:

1) Supported over 21,000 children with cancer

2) Supported over 15,000 families living with childhood cancer

3) Supplied over 25,000 pounds of candy to families 

Being that it is Post-Halloween candy season, this scene is all too vivid to me now. I have received candy questions and emails all day. In fact, it is almost impossible to get anything else done, other than addressing the candy!

4) Supplied over 15,000 toiletry items to families 

Each April, in honor of Mattie's birthday, we collect toiletries for our item drive. These items then stock our Snack and Item Carts at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and Children's Hospital at Sinai in Baltimore, MD. 

5) Funded three child life specialist positions

Jess was the first child life professional we funded at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. In this photo, Jess was with two nurses who were trying to simulate a procedure on Jess. Naturally the more personal insights a psychosocial professional has about what her children and families will be experiencing the more effective the care and support. 

Believe it or not, when children went for procedures and scans, they typically did this without the support of child life specialist. Peter and I learned from Mattie, how crucial Linda (his child life specialist) was to our existence. She came with me to EVERY procedure and scan and not only managed Mattie, she helped me cope. 

This is Lerin, our second child life specialist we funded at MedStar Georgetown. It was taken on Lerin's very first day of work at the Hospital. She was already making friends and getting to know patients. Lerin worked on the weekends. Prior to Lerin, there was NO child life support at the Hospital on Saturday and Sunday. Mattie Miracle changed that, because support is needed 7 days a week.
This is Morganne. She was our third child life professional in the Mattie Miracle child life position at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. Three great women, who I am happy we were able to fund! Like Lerin, Morganne worked on the weekends, and staff have told me they do not know how they ever made it before without having a dedicated child life professional on the weekends. 

6) Funded the first evidence based Psychosocial Standards of Care for Children & Their Families, published in a top-tier medical journal. Mattie Miracle paid for indefinite open access, so the public can read and download them at no cost. To read the standards go to:

We thank our supporters for making the miracles possible and helping us bring awareness to the importance of comprehensive cancer care, because ........ IT'S NOT JUST ABOUT THE MEDICINE!

1 comment:

Margy Jost said...

Vicki, I love this post.. I am reading it awhile after you wrote it. I love that you posted all of Mattie Miracle's accomplishments. They are amazing and a testimony to your dedication. The woman who wished you good luck did not know you! I love most of all Mattie's picture, his smile, his face of Hope. Mattie was special. He knew all those smiles would make you smile back after he was gone. I did not know Mattie but he inspires me to continue to be all that I can be to kids in treatment for Cancer