Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Happy Birthday Maggie

Margaret Ellen Spado

July 26, 1973

We were living in Brookfield, Illinois. Our house was on the corner of 31st and Harrison. It was a single story two bedroom affair built on a slab of concrete. The washer and dryer were at one end of the kitchen.

Our first born, Maggie, came to us that day and we became parents. We lived and loved. Then, on a fateful late Spring day, our lives would change forever.

L to R: Bobby, Maggie and Adrienne, Graduation Day, June 4, 1991

June 8, 1991

We were living in a cabin at Minneapolis YMCA Camp Menogyn, where I worked as a cook and caretaker. A one room affair with a sleeping loft, a screen porch and an outhouse. We had one 4-gang electical outlet.

We got the message early that morning via a knock on the cabin door by the camp director. Maggie was killed in an aotomobile accident in St. Paul. We were 300 miles away.

July 26, 2011

Maggie will be 38 today. We will celebrate with family and go out to dinner. We'll have decadent dessert, in the form of chocolate chocolate cake, at Cafe Latte' in St. Paul. We will all be together.

Please, my friends. I don't look for sympathy. I just wish to tell you we are still here and we acknowledge and celebrate Maggie's life and our loss on this, the day of her birth.

Maggie's Song
By: Dad

When I was young
I followed my dreams
My friends thought I was crazy
With some of my schemes

You stood by me, baby
Through good and through bad
This world is crazy
The end is so sad

Through twenty years of marriage
The love did divide
Twas a Pearl named Maggie
So sweet and sublime

She awakened our spirits
And of others around
Made her mark on the world
Her legend lives on


(Maggie won't you) Please come back
I knew you would
If you could

Life is a card game
It was the luck of the draw
It was comin' up aces
But fate had a flaw

Something has happened
No more smilin' sweet song
My world is empty
Maggie is gone

Repeat Chorus:

(Maggie won't you) Please come back
I knew you would
If you could


Sometimes we think we'll wake up from this horrible dream. Deep inside we know we won't ever live happily ever after.
Happy Birthday Maggie, we love you.


Perrine said...

This is a wonderful post to read. It is sad, for sure, but that love never dies is what its all about. Once someone like Maggie touches our lives we are all changed for the better. She brought smiles and tears and showed us that we could endure the worst and still go on living, even with the loss of such a wonderful person. Thank you for sharing the song, Joe. It was lovely and heartfelt. I know on today of all days your heart aches, as mine does. But the fond memories live on and will always be there for us to cherish. We were all blessed to have such a loving, wonderful person touch our lives. I am grateful for Maggie for being that person. I miss her and think of her often but know she (and Bob) are always there, somewhere, in spirit and that that spirit is eternal.
Love, Perrine

Marilyn & Jeff said...

Beautiful post for a beautiful person. Love and blessings to you all always.

Noelle Clearwater said...

My dear friend,
I saw your post about your dear daughter Maggie, and my heart is full in a way that I cannot describe to you. I have never lost a child, but I have known loss and death, and how it changes your entire world as you once knew it. I find you to be one deeply courageous man, willing to revisit this anniversary and its sorrow each year as a tribute to the one you love so dearly. I think that there is a certain understanding of life's paradoxical and often painful beauty that is gained from having witnessed its ending. And those of us who have borne witness are forever linked together in a chain of communion--understanding the fidelity to remembering and using our experience of personal pain to reach out to others who need the comfort of a hand on a shoulder or the warmth of a soothing embrace. Birthday Blessings to your divine girl, Maggie.
Love and Peace on this day to you and your family,

Mel said...

She's beautiful.
Said it before--worthy of saying again, sir.
She's just beautiful.

And you were so graced to have that angel in your life.

No doubt there's an empty place and some hurts still there. It's in the lyrics, as is the huge love shared (undoubtedly both ways).
I hope it's okay to just care about the empty spot that you get to search around in as you feel that loss. But I'm glad you feel it and don't just tuck it away and do what could have been done--not bother to trust TO talk about it, yaknow?

((((((((( Spadoman ))))))))))

Beautiful angel of yours--she has to be so proud of the person you are.
<-- am, too!

Mel said...

((((((((( Maggie )))))))))))

Happy Birthday little angel!!

Unknown said...

I have tears in my eyes as I read of your tribute to your sweet girl. That she remains a part of your life must be a huge comfort.

I send love and birthday wishes to Maggie and your family.

love and peace,

Dawn Elliott said...

I, too, have tears in my eyes as I read your beautiful tribute to your daughter. I love the fact that the family continues to celebrate Maggie's birthday each year - I do the same for my best friend from high school, who disappeared in 1986...
Bless your hearts.

GlorV1 said...

What a beautiful tribute to "Maggie." She must be smiling down on you. My hugs to you because I know how hard it is to lose a family member. Next week we will celebrate my son Val's birthday. He has been gone March 7 of 2004. We too will celebrate with the things he loved. I plan on making his favorite foods, lighting a lot of candles outside, playing his favoroite music and feeling his presence as I know you feel Maggie. It's hard to do but it does get done, tears and all. Happy Birthday Maggie! Hugs and prayers to all.

rebecca said...

dear family,
i hope your voices rang out in favorite stories, happy memories, tender mercy.
i am sitting here....drinking in your father love. thank you for taking us in to the heart of your heart.
your pearl, your bright song, your forever maggie.

Spadoman said...

My dear dear friends. We got through the day, together. I know that's the only way it was gonna happen. All of you are part of that togetherness for me as well. I appreciate the outpouring of love each and every one of you bestow upon me.

I wish Peace with all my heart to everyone, and a very sincere Thank You.

Elizabeth said...

What a beautiful young woman. I am honored to visit here - through Noelle -- and witness not just your dear daughter's life but your own endless love for her.

Peace and blessings to you onward.

deb did it said...

Happy Birthday Maggie, and love goes on and on...and on. ~ Peace~

Meri said...

Happy birthday, Maggie. . . and may your family live "Happily in spite of" your death, and "Happily because" you graced their lives.

Unknown said...

Your beautiful girl; your pride and joy so suddenly taken from you. Living with such a loss is something I can only imagine and even just imagining it, shakes me so, I try not to think about it, as there is nothing we can do when the reaper comes for those we love.

What we can do is what you and your family are doing - celebrating the life of a daughter you will always cherish.

My thoughts are with you.

Sending a hug.

mig said...

I'm lost for words.

susan said...

I know you don't look for sympathy but losing someone you love no matter their age is such a hard thing. May you always remember her smile.

I have a favorite card I've kept for years that says:

'Death is not extinguishing the light; it is putting out the lamp because the dawn has come.'

Rabindranath Tagore

Margaret Pangert said...

Seeing your daughter's face lit up from the inside, so full of light and vitality, helps me to appreciate the fact that Maggie had a wonderful life in the few years allocated to her, Spadoman. You were both lucky to have shared this joy. Your Dad's song says it all, so achingly tender and real. Happy birthday, sweet Maggie.