Boston NAMI Walk 2012

May 14th, 2012 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Here's Alex Travis' team picture from the 2012 Nami Walk in Boston. Please visit nami.org for more information on how you can help raise mental health awareness and eliminate the stigma that surrounds it. We miss you Cailean...

CAILEAN – HERE, THERE, AND EVERYWHERE

Nov 24th, 2009 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

It is hard to believe that we are facing our sixth Thanksgiving without Cailean. I wish that I could say that it’s getting easier, but that would not be true at all.We continue to mourn his loss and life continues to present many challenges each and everyday. My heart is indeed broken; trying to celebrate holidays is definitely not an easy task.

I feel fortunate that I constantly feel Cailean’s presence and spirit. He is always present in my heart, soul, and mind. His picture is in every room of our house. As I travel to work each day I pass places where Cailean spent happy times – on the way to West Point I pass a restaurant where he worked, his high school, and on post, several buildings that were very familiar to him. On the way to school, I drive by the country club where Cailean played and worked. In school I go out of my way to pass two pictures of Cailean that are hanging in the hallway – just to say hello.

This year I’m sure that Cailean would have been very grateful for two new family members. He would have warmly welcomed and loved his first niece, Tatum, and his future brother-in-law, Joe.

On Thursday I will give thanks to family and friends who continue to remember and honor our dear and kind Cailean. I’ll also give thanks for the memories of happier times.

ON THE EVE OF CAILEAN’S TWENTY-THIRD BIRTHDAY

Jun 19th, 2009 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Always be just a little kinder than necessary are words I noticed on a huge billboard as we drove through Watertown, MA on our way to participate as part of the Caileans Walkers group in our fifth annual NAMI Walk on Sunday, May 31, 2009. This quote from James Barrie, author of Peter Pan, struck me as being an appropriate theme for a day in which over thirty people gathered to honor our son, brother, and friend to many, Cailean Walker Sheeran.

The words certainly applied to Cailean, a gentle, kind, funny young man who loved to have fun and make other people happy through his wonderful music, funny sense of humor, and positive personality. On the eve of his twenty-third birthday, I can only assume that all of his attributes would have carried him very far in life and as a husband and father.

The quote also fits Brittany and Joe who opened their home to overnight guests and who also hosted some wonderful barbeques for the walk participants at their home over the weekend. Additionally, it describes those who walked as part of our team, many of whom traveled many hours to be able to join John, Brittany, and me : Ben, Bill, Bobby, Cathy, Chastity, Christine, Dana, Danny, Diane, Dylan, Debbie, Dylan, Erica, Graham, Gillian, Judy, Joe, Kathy, Maris, Melissa, Mike, Pam, Raquel, Rebecca, Richie, Ryan, Tammy, John Sheehan (separate from John Sheeran).

Others were also kind in giving, soliciting, or sending donations, many of whom are already listed as walkers above. Donations to NAMI were also given by: Mary Ehler, Amy Dowd, Anonymous, Nancy Lee, Dolores and Alan Norton, Robert Travis, Barbara Swartzwelder, Brion Travis, Margaret Yonco Haines, and Cynthia Timmerman. We were recently notified of donations given by John and Penny Seekircher and Kathryn Plummer in Caileans Name for the Lyme and Tick-Borne Diseases Research Center at Columbia University Medical Center. There were many others who wished that they could be there; they sent their thoughts and wishes to let us know they would be thinking of us on this heart wrenching, but yet heart-warming, day. We hope to post a group photograph of the NAMI walk shortly.

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to all listed above and to everyone who continues to remember and honor the very kind Cailean Walker Sheeran.

Happy Birthday, Cailean – you are always in my heart and thoughts. Love forever, and then a day, Mom

Missing Cailean for Five Years Now

May 11th, 2009 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Cailean

FIVE YEARS GONE

May 11th, 2009 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

WHILE TYPING THE CAPTION, IT JUST OCCURRED TO ME THAT “FIVE YEARS GONE” WAS THE TITLE OF ONE OF MY FAVORITE JERRY JEFF WALKER ALBUMS FROM 1969 OR SO. WE GAVE CAILEAN HIS MIDDLE NAME WALKER TO HONOR THE MAN WHO INTRODUCED US TO THE WORLD OF TEXAS MUSIC AND THE CITY THAT IMBODIED IT, AUSTIN. FORTUNATELY,CAILEAN AND MAUREEN AND I VISITED AUSTIN 3 SEPARATE TIMES. IT SEEMS THAT SOME KIND OF COSMIC COINCIDENCE OR CONGRUENCE HAS OCCURRED. REGARDLESS, I WANT EVERYONE TO KNOW HOW UNFAIR ALL OF THIS IS AND WAS. CAILEAN WALKER SHEERAN WAS A GODSEND! BLESS YOU BUDDY AND KEEP ROOTING FOR THE CELTICS. LOVE, DAD.

A Heart Warming Story on a Beautiful Winter Day

Jan 16th, 2009 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Little did I know that stopping by a small store in Highland Falls would bring a conversation that was to warm my heart and soul. After completing my sales transaction and just as I was about to leave the store, J., the salesperson, remarked that I looked familiar to her. I commented that I lived across the river in Garrison and asked if she was from Highland Falls. She replied in the affirmative, so I offered that perhaps she might have known our children who attended the local high school in that town. J.told me that she graduated from O’Neill High School in 2003. I replied that she might have known our son who would have graduated a year behind her in 2004. J. immediately exclaimed “Cailean”! She shared that he was always on her mind, how she spoke to him everyday, and always carried his picture around with her. J. told me how much she always had liked and admired Cailean – he was so nice and kind to everyone in school.

I always try to remain stoic when I talk about Cailean, usually to no avail. I started crying and J. apologized for making me upset. I told her that it was fine and how much I loved to hear stories about Cailean; that this, indeed, was a nice moment for me. Her words brought me solace at what has been a distressing time.

How wonderful to know that Cailean’s spirit and goodness lives on in the memories of family, friends, and even a stranger whose name I did not even know up to now ! As his mother, I was so proud and comforted to again hear how his life so positively touched the lives of so many others!

another Celtic season begins

Nov 5th, 2008 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

well Cailean, it’s hard to believe that another nba season has just begun, and, further, you are not here to enjoy it with me. it seems like last june’s championship is still resounding in my brain. fortunately, i saw 4 games in boston during the playoffs with brittany, joe and pam, etal and the celts won each one. each game made me remember all the times that you and i drove up to boston to see a game, especially in 2002 when they almost made the finals. they were some of my favorite moments ever. i thought that you would appreciate the fact that brittany and i both dedicated last season and our title aspirations to you right after kevin garnett was acquired. the first thing i did after they won the championship was think of you, my all time basketball buddy. they did it for you buddy, they did it for you. love, dad. p.s. here’s to the next one Cailean!

FOREVER YOUNG

Jun 20th, 2008 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Today marks Cailean Walker Sheeran’s twenty-second birthday. Unfortunately, for all of us, he will always be “Forever Young”. We can only imagine what his future would have been. As I noted in an earlier entry to this website, that although Cailean passed away at the young age of seventeen, he endured more pain in the last year of his life than anybody should ever have to. In a way that made him wise beyond his years. He absolutely tried to be the best son, brother, uncle, grandson, nephew, cousin, and friend during this time.

We wish to thank all who came to Boston on May 31 to join us in Cailean’s honor in this year’s NAMI Walk. Almost forty – veterans and newcomers attended. We also wish to extend our gratitude to those who could not attend but sent their best wishes and/or donations. We appreciate the effort that everyone makes to be present – most are from out of town and travel many hours. Such an outpouring touches all of our hearts and we have to believe that Cailean was also there.

Watching the Boston Celtics win the NBA championship this week was very bittersweet. Cailean would have been so happy that his team had finally won! The last time they had taken the title was just days before Cailean was born on June 20, 1986. We have to believe that Cailean is cheering now!

This would have been the year that Cailean graduated from college. We congratulate his friends who indeed made this milestone or are close to it in academics or in the service. The new Coldplay album came out this week. They were one of Cailean’s favorite groups and to this day I feel a special connection with them as well (Chris Martin has an uncanny resemblance to Cailean at times). I think of our son during the song “Vive La Vida” – for a while Cailean did rule the world!

Happy Birthday, Cailean. Love Forever and a Day, MOM

Happy Birthday Indeed

Jun 20th, 2008 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

pierce

NAMI Walk Pictures

Jun 1st, 2008 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Thanks to everyone that came out for the walk and for all the others that made donations. Here are some pictures from the day.

http://picasaweb.google.com/mattcornell/20080531Nami?authkey=dOhWqIagbP4

nami08

CAILEAN: FOUR YEARS AND COUNTING

May 28th, 2008 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

well Cailean, it’s now four years since you left us as your mother and father and sisters continue to experience the many facets of your ever resounding absence; the answer to the old rhetorical question ” but who’s counting?” is quite simply “we are, every day and week and month and year”…..
which is not to overlook another form of math: THE INCREASING LIST OF THE MANY THINGS THAT NEVER WILL BE versus THE LIST OF MANY THINGS THAT NEVER WILL OCCUR AGAIN. regardless, you continue to reside at the center of our everyday lives.
I heard a song on the radio the other day by Marc Cohn entitled ” Let me be your witness” which seemed to evoke the many ways in which you remain with us. Brittany and Mariel are your witness as they remember what it was like to have a brother who was so loyal and endearing. your mother is your witness as she remembers what is was like to always have a reason to give her love and support. Emma is your witness as she lays her head on the sofa in the tv room exactly on the spot where you used to do the same. your father is your witness as he now sits at the computer watching Celtic games on the tv while simultaneously checking the play by play stats on Yahoo sports for the game just like you did. and in the background, we can hear you endlessly playing that blues riff on the guitar as we all sit together.
this weekend, your friends and family will once again meet in Boston for another memorial walk as we honor your memory. which brings me to another song I just heard on the radio which was written and sung by Julie Gold. the song is entitled “Heaven” and it includes the oft repeated refrain ” I think I’ll go to heaven… heaven is in your eyes.” so very true Buddy every time we see your picture. thanks for being our son and brother. love, Dad. 5/28/08

May 12th,2008

May 12th, 2008 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Four years, and counting. I can remember exactly how my May 12th played out in 2004. I remember that it was a beautiful day in Boston. I was wrapping up classes at Northeastern and thought that hopefully Cailean was sitting outside enjoying the day as well. I went to bed unusually early that night, even by my standards. And most of all, I remember Matt waking me up in a gentle voice and knowing immediately what happened.

I hope this May 12th finds all of his friends and family at a happy and healthy place in life. He would’ve wanted nothing less…
Rest in peace, Cailean.

Memorial Ad

May 8th, 2008 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Memorial Ad 2008

NAMI Boston 2008

Apr 18th, 2008 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

http://www.nami.org/namiwalks08/MAS/caileanwalker

Its that time of year again. I’m sure that Cailean weighs heavily on everyone’s mind.

Team Walking for Cailean Walker will participate in its fourth NAMI Walk Boston this year and Dexter is so excited about it already. Cailean committed suicide just shy of his 18th birthday. His life was too short, but his magnetic personality continues to affect the people that knew and loved him.

Suicide is the third leading cause of death in the 15-24 year old age range. NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, is the largest education, support and advocacy organization that serves the needs of all those whose lives are touched by these illnesses. This includes persons with mental illness, their families, friends, employers, the law enforcement community and policy makers. The NAMI organization is composed of approximately 1100 local affiliates, 50 state offices and a national office.

The goals of the NAMIWalks program are: to fight the stigma that surrounds mental illness, to build awareness of the fact that the mental health system in this country needs to be improved, and to raise funds for NAMI so that they can continue their mission.

NAMI is a 501(c)3 charity and any donation you make to support my participation in this event is tax deductible. NAMI has been rated by Worth magazine as among the top 100 charities “most likely to save the world” and has been given an “A” rating by The American Institute of Philanthropy for efficient and effective use of charitable dollars.

Together, we can help to fight the stigma that surrounds mental illness and raise awareness about suicide prevention.

You’re all invited to join us on May 31, 2008 at the Artesani Park, Brighton (Boston). If you know anyone else that might be interested please pass this information on to them.

http://www.nami.org/namiwalks08/MAS/caileanwalker

I have reserved tables/grills at the Arsenal Park again for a post-walk BBQ. Even if you cant make it to the walk, please feel welcome to come to the BBQ.

Thanks,
Mariel

Hotel Info:
The Sheraton Newton Hotel(right over the Mass Pike): rates for $139/night
http://www.starwoodhotels.com/sheraton/property/overview/index.html?propertyID=831&arrivalDate=2008-05-30&departureDate=2008-05-31&lengthOfStay=1&reservationTotalCost=&roomOccupancyTotal=01&flag1=&rateCategoryCode=&ratePlanCurrencyCode=&rateFrequency=&roomTypeCode=&roomBedCode=&roomRate=&numberOfAdults=01&smokingPreference=&city=&stateProvince=MA&country=US&postalCode=&metroCode=&hotelLocationType=&pOI=&PagingKey=&requestedChainCode=SI&requestedAffiliationCode=SI&goToRooms=no&diffOfCount=-1&rateS=&totalCost=&ratePlanName=&numberOfRooms=01&countOfPaging=0&promoCode=&fromRes=FR&okRate=Y&averageRate=&bn=westin&rcc=&rac=&bedColor=false&smokeColor=false&rateColor=false&iataColor=false&wheelColor=false&adultColor=false&bid=we&wheelchairPreference=0&count=0&countOfPages=1&countPosition=0&totalCount=0&fromPage=23XX&roomBedCodeDis=&ratePlanNameDis=&roomSharers%7C0%7CguestFirstName=&roomSharers%7C0%7CguestLastName=&rateCodeDetailsIndicator=Y&fromSearch=11XX&maximumReservationRooms=3&promotionCode=&corporateAccountNumber=&rcdi=&starwoodPreferredGuest=&fromPR=PR&sortingOrder=&iATANumber=&ratePlanID=&LaunchLocation=&ratesortSelect=

THE SMILE HE LEFT BEHIND

Jan 4th, 2008 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

A few weeks ago I heard a song whose title touched my heart. The Smile He Left Behind seemed to capture how Im attempting to remember Cailean these days- picturing him in all his glory with his smile reaching out to all. He continues to be the first and last thought of each day and so many, many minutes in between.

Ive pictured Cailean smiling at various 2007 events. Im sure he was elated at the birth of his second nephew, Chase, last January 26th. He loved being an uncle and looked forward to the times he was able to spend with Dexter. I believe that he was with us at the March Gala held in honor of his Aunt Bernadette celebrating her forty years in Catholic education. Im positive our son witnessed family and friends walking for him as members of the Walking for Cailean Walker group in our third annual participation in the NAMI walk in Boston this year a very wet one. He shared our deep gratitude for those who came from near and far to participate (as well as for those who wanted to, but were unable to walk). We hope that you can all join us this year when the event will be held on Saturday, May 31st. In August Cailean must have celebrated the news that Mariel passed her important dosimetry examination. Finally, he was present with family and friends at the surprise 30th birthday party which Joe planned for Brittany in Boston last month.

Over the year I also think that Cailean was saddened with the news of the death of two of our friends. Linda was a NYC friend and well respected MS nurse who will soon have a building named in her honor at the hospital where she once worked. Our son did not know Linda well, but she was still very touched by his life experience and death. Just last month we lost another friend, Mara Martin, mother of Ryan and Lindsey Albanese. Mara would probably be proud that I call her my most outrageous friend. She was also a good one. Mara was one of the first to arrive at our home the morning after Cailean died and subsequently stopped by on an almost daily basis before she and her family relocated to Albany. She had Caileans picture on display at home and in her office at work; she also carried it in her wallet and told me that she had shown it to a number of nurses she met during her chemotherapy sessions.

These losses remind us again of how unpredictable and fragile life can be and that we should never take anything for granted. As such, we wish to again express our love and gratitude to all those who continue to remember and honor Caileanand the smile he left behind. Love, Maureen

CAILEAN AND THE CELTICS

Dec 11th, 2007 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

WHILE IN BOSTON THIS PAST WEEKEND FOR BRITTANY’S SURPRISE 30TH BIRTHDAY PARTY, WE MANAGED TO WATCH THE CELTICS BEAT CHICAGO ON TV SATURDAY PLUS THE TV HIGHLIGHTS FROM FRIDAY NIGHT’S ROUT OF TORONTO. THE TEAM CONTINUES TO IMPRESS ON ALL LEVELS. I KNOW THAT CAILEAN WOULD LOVE THE WORLD CLASS SKILLS AND ENTHUSIASM OF KEVIN GARNETT. AND WOULD ALSO BE EXCITED ABOUT THE OTHER NEWCOMERS INCLUDING BIG BABY GLEN DAVIS. GO CELTS. HOPE YOU’RE WATCHING THEM BUDDY. LOVE, DAD

Nov 6th, 2007 Posted in Free Form | No Comments »

We made a quick visit down to NY this weekend. Both Matt and I have so much family down there that the trips are usually hectic. We tried to keep it pretty low key this time, which allowed me to stop by the house. I’ve been working at my photography a lot lately and realized a few weeks ago that I really wanted to take some shots of Cailean’s guitar. Anyone that knew him understands how special it is. Even Dexter was eager to get his hands on it and listen to its sweet,sweet sound.

There are a few more pictures at http://snaps.pixyblog.com . I hope to get more soon. If anyone would like a print just email me. mariel@slowburn.net
guit

NAMI Walk 2008

Oct 31st, 2007 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Hi,
Just wanted to post a Save the Date…

The date of NAMI WALKS BOSTON 2008 is May 24, 2008

Hope to see some of you there.

Love,Mariel

CAILEAN’S 21ST BIRTHDAY 2007

Jun 21st, 2007 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Despite the pain and disappointments and a sense of loss as big as the sky and all the unrealized dreams and the profound absence, June 20 remains Cailean’s birthday. As such, June 20 endures as a central day in our lives, the day that he first was given to us and the day on which each year he grew older and wiser and more indispensable to our family. Happy birthday Buddy. love, DAD. P.S. Clemens pitches today.

Shattered Dreams

Jun 20th, 2007 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Today marks Cailean’s twenty-first birthday. It is such a sad day for us. Cailean had such high aspirations for himself; although our hopes mirrored his, we truly only wanted him to be happy.

I had no idea what change a little boy would bring into our lives. As Cailean grew into his toddler years, I remember remarking how happy I was that we had a boy to join Brittany and Mariel. His spirit was unique. He introduced us into the worlds of Ghostbusters, Teenage Mutant Turtles, Aliens, Star Wars etc. Then came
t-ball, soccer, Little League, basketball, tennis, and even the sport of golf ball hunting at the Highlands Country Club. Later his interest in music opened our world to Jimi Hendrix, Dave Matthews, and Coldplay, while at the same time he gained an appreciation of some of our favorite musicians. This interest of course crossed over to his own guitar playing when he enjoyed the blues, gypsy, rock and contemporary music.

Cailean had many, many, wonderful times, but he really deserved a full lifetime of them.

Happy Birthday, Cailean – you live on in our hearts and our thoughts- constantly. Love forever and then a day- MOM

more nami pics

May 22nd, 2007 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

http://picasaweb.google.com/mattcornell/20070519?authkey=rP3V9TZoMw8