It’s no secret that I am very protective about the use of the term rockstar… hearing the word thrown around willy nilly… makes me sad, often angry. I associate it with my Katy and the fight she had… and her ROCKSTAR status.
I want to tell you about another ROCKSTAR who also happens to be named Katie. Rockstar is the only word I can use describe her because she shares so many of the same rockstar qualities that our Katy had.
Katie Tuscano and I went to college together and I was immediately drawn to her beautiful smile…she was a huge Katy cheerleader from the moment she met her and learned of our story. Always checking in..asking how my girl was doing. Comforting me on the hard days over lunch at Panera.
After college Katie and I fell out of daily touch but Facebook kept us updated and especially kept Katie up to date on the happenings of Katy’s wait for a heart. Katie always a kind a generous person would always have a sweet comment word for a particularly cute picture or a specifically hard day of bad news.
When Katy died… Katie sent me one of the most thoughtful gifts we received following Katy’s death. She had a gorgeous fleece blanket made that was covered in beautiful pictures that she had picked out especially for me so I could wrap myself in Katy.
Six months after Katy’s death, Katie was in a horrific car accident that left her paralyzed. I remember learning the news of Katie’s accident and feeling completely hopeless and terrified. How could this happen to her…why Katie. She was so full of life. She is such a good person. I honestly couldn’t cope with the information and I was afraid to reach out and talk to her, let alone see her.
After talking to some mutual friends and seeing her beautiful smile via Facebook I saw that this horrific accident didn’t change her…she was still my beautiful friend.
Katie and I began talking via FB messenger…and it felt so good to chat with my dear friend.
That is until she wanted to get together. I didn’t want to see her. I was too sad to see her. I couldn’t handle seeing her.
So I being a horrible friend put her off… but that Katie she is persistent. She told me she would be at Katy’s grave on her anniversary on August 16 and she couldn’t wait to see me and meet Riley.
Sure enough we pull into the cemetery and I spot Katie’s wheel chair van and the tears immediately start streaming down my face. Not for my Katy, but for my friend Katie. Out she came with beautiful flowers for me and flowers for Katy. I got to meet Katie’s beautiful mom Tricia and we had a lovely visit with Katy.
As it was getting time for us to leave Katie handed me an envelope and explained that as part of her settlement she had asked that the gentlemen that did this to her make a charitable donation in her name and she had chosen the Katy M Murphy Foundation as one of them. I was completely shocked and thankful, but also humbled that during what had to be her darkest days Katie was thinking of others and how she could help other people so that a she could spread some light from her tragic accident.
After we hugged and said our goodbyes. I opened the envelope expecting a small donation for our newly established foundation… instead we received a substantial donation that will allow us to provide multiple headstones and many hours of clown care fun at Boston Children’s Hospital. In addition to providing resources to grieving families.
And I left knowing that there was another ROCKSTAR here on earth.