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Michele and JJ Wade

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Mother's Day as a Bereaved Parent.

May is a special month for me, some reasons are blessings, while others are bittersweet. Family has always been and always will be one of the most important aspects in my life. Over the years, the good Lord blessed me with two bundles of joy. JJ Wade, my bouncing baby boy was born on September 22, 1972 and four years later on December 31, 1976 Diane Michele Wade, a beautiful baby girl, completed our family. January 26, 2004 was the beginning of unimaginable changes to my world...suddenly drafted into a club a parent never expects to become a member of...overnight I became a bereaved parent.

JJ died suddenly on January 26, 2004 from carbon monoxide poisoning. His death was initially considered to be either accidental or a homicide...ruled in June 2004 to be accidental. Michele was the only person that could testify to some of the inconsistencies with the scene that would possibly show homicide. The end of May changed the possible outcome of JJ's death.

Michele moved in to help me raise his traumatized sons, Brandon--11 and Jamie--10 (ages on 1/26/04). She enjoyed doing things with them and her four children.... Jeremy–11, Trent–8, Morgan–6, & Michael–3 (ages on 1/26/04). She took them to church, fishing, swimming, to the skating rink (even roller skating with them...LOL) and helped with homework too.

Mother’s Day 2004 was difficult without JJ here but Michele lifted my spirits with love and caring.... unaware of the unimaginable tragedy to strike our grieving family within two weeks. On May 20, 2004 my beautiful Michele was killed instantly in a car crash when an irresponsible woman crossed the centerline.

Coping with the emotional upheaval that comes with the losses is overwhelming in itself but I try to focus on the positive aspects in my life. I never imagined I would be raising children (grandchildren) at my age but I will always do my best to provide a safe, loving, Christian home for them. We have suffered tragedies in our lives and we must learn to live with the sadness. Even though my whole being (heart, mind, body, and soul) will always feel the ache of missing JJ and Michele, I will continue to follow where God and my heart leads me.
 

A few of the ways I share my children’s lives after they died is by starting some new traditions...yearly scholarships in their memory at a local college they both attended; a Celebration of Life Ceremony for loved ones from around the world to be held each New Year’s Eve; and cleaning a section of road in their memory. Also, I started writing poetry to put some of my emotions onto paper and possibly help others when they are faced with the turmoil and pain of burying a child. I have written poems about the memories we shared, the painful heartache of missing them, and the unrealistic views from people that haven’t endured the loss of a child/children.

 
 
 
 
 
Best interest
of a child

Step up to the plate
for children's rights!

Trips to Washington DC to attempt to have federal laws for children's rights, so the laws would be the same across the United States, instead of different from state-to-state. Siblings/children/grandchildren should not lose contact with other family members after a loss (parental abandonment, death, incarceration, etc).  Everyone should work together and put the best interest of minor children above anything else.

jjfamilyeaster.jpg
Right, JJ & his 3 children; Michele & her 4 children; Mike Cook (left) holding Michael

Pride and Joy

JJ's precious children/grandchildren:
Samantha Nicole Newsome 
     Damion Scott Newsome
     Devin James Newsome
Brandon Scott Wade
William James Wade, III
 
 
Michele's precious children
Jeremy Wade Lamm
Trent Darrin Lamm
Morgan Taylor Buonanduci
Michael Allen Cook, Jr.

 
 
 
Pay It Forward

Two annual scholarships at Paul D. Camp Community College, in honor and memory of JJ and Michele, accept tax-deductible donations to help fund the scholarships for lifetime:

Paul D. Camp Community College
Dr. Patsy Joyner, PDCCC
P.O. Box 737
Franklin, VA 23851

Dr. Patsy R. Joyner
Institutional Advancement Vice President
Paul D. Camp Community College 
100 North College Drive
Franklin, VA 23851
757-569-6791 phone
757-569-6795 fax
pjoyner@pc.vccs.edu