There is no way to individually thank all of the people who have so generously shared their kind words, prayers and who have sent e-mails, cards and flowers to our family after the tragic loss of our 14-year-old niece, Maddie. She was killed in a skiing accident at Durango Mountain Resort on Jan. 5 as she celebrated the last day of Christmas break with friends.
The compassion and support we have felt from so many individuals in this community has been humbling. It is such a joy to be a part of a community that looks out for others. A special thank you needs to be extended to our family of friends at Prudential, the Steamboat Springs School District and Steamboat Springs Middle School for all the beautiful flower arrangements that were instrumental in making Maddie’s memorial a special tribute to a vibrant young girl.
Maddie was an accomplished skier who grew up skiing most weekends with her parents, two younger sisters and friends. We realize that this tragic accident has touched many of you close to your hearts as most of us spend our own weekends skiing with our kids. Many of us also are well versed in sending our children out on their own for an active and fun filled day of skiing with friends.
As a family, we have searched for a lesson to be learned from this tragedy. However, on that day Maddie was doing everything right. She was wearing a helmet, skiing in bounds on a maintained trail, and continuously checked in with her parents via texts and photos. It was an unfortunate accident that could have happened to any of us.
Our family has chosen to fight against the fear that grips a parent after such a loss, the fear that makes you hold your child back from exploring adventures on their own. Only days after the accident, our entire family of 40 members gathered on skis and spent an entire day celebrating Maddie’s own adventures. We were determined to find a small piece of solace and remove any fear of skiing that might be waffling in the minds of our children. In the days ahead, we will continue to appreciate our time together on the slopes and allow our children the opportunity to delight in ski days with friends knowing that Maddie is looking down and smiling in full approval.
Again, our heartfelt thanks to all of you who have reached out to our family during this difficult time and who have made efforts to celebrate the beautiful life of our niece.
Tim and Beth Bishop and family