Joyce Blatterman meets with Jackie's classmates, teachers, friends, and principal in the Woodmoor library. Later, Joyce read some of her daughter's favorite books to the students.
Photo by Karen Diefendorf/Woodinville Weekly.
by Karen Diefendorf
Randall and Joyce Blatterman's daughter Jacquelyn was only seven years old when she died of liver failure Mar. 13 at Children's Hospital in Seattle, but the young Woodmoor Elementary student touched many lives before her death and continues to do so.
In spite of the tuberous sclerosis with which she was born, Jackie was an inspiration to all who knew her. Her teachers, family, and classmates all profited from knowing the youngster.
Following Jackie's unexpected death, Woodmoor principal Blake Puckett wrote: "Her smile, unconditional love, and reminder of the worth of every individual has made us all better people. The void she leaves physically will be filled permanently by the lessons she taught."
Jackie's classmates lovingly remember her and continue to take pride in the fact they helped her learn to walk, an accomplishment the doctors had warned would probably never happen.
Elaine Tannesen, her special education teacher, wrote a small book to help the school deal with Jackie's death, and in its conclusion, Tannesen wrote that Jackie's love is still in the school:
"It is in the hallways and the playground, the gym, the office, and the classrooms, and it sparkles throughout the whole school. It is Jackie's gift to us."
But Jackie has also left another gift to her school: books. And like her, they will be long remembered and appreciated.
Books appropriate for grades 1-6 are being collected and will become part of the Woodmoor Elementary School library. Each will have a special bookplate in the front designed by the first grade students of Jani Gatter.
Jackie's mother Joyce explains, "She had a passion for books. This is a way other children can share Jackie's love for books."
For information or to donate a book, call 788-5777.