In memory of Pam

Pam was a faithful person who lived life to the fullest. She had a special way about her that warmed the hearts of everyone she met. Pam was the middle child and had a close bond with her older brother and younger sister. She was an incredible athlete and excelled in many sports, most notably soccer. She played throughout high school and college and won many accolades for her athletic skill. Pam also had a profound love for the outdoors, especially the mountains. She spent many Sunday’s hiking and enjoying all nature had to offer. She loved her career of teaching, coaching and working with her students and athletes. While her career brought her tremendous satisfaction, nothing compared to the simple joy and happiness she found in her marriage. That joy was only doubled when they learned they were expecting. In the middle of July, Pam gave birth to a healthy and perfect baby boy. Hours later, she would be taken from him far earlier than imagined; Pam suffered a fatal complication from an amniotic fluid embolism (AFE).

Lauren, Pam’s younger sister, honors her memory through sharing the story of her death and supporting organizations like the World Health Organization, Every Mother Counts and the AFE Foundation. She also is involved in the Safe Motherhood Quilt Project and has made a quilt piece in memory of Pam. Lauren believes informing others about maternal mortality one story at a time will help save lives. She also understands the value of sharing information and raising awareness about various aspects related to maternal mortality, especially about labor inducing medications, both globally and here in the US.

To continue Pam’s legacy, Lauren recently completed the New York City Marathon. Months before Pam became pregnant she was training for a marathon. Lauren has gone on to finish the training and marathon Pam set out to do. “With every step I took, every corner I turned, every street I crossed while training for and eventually running the marathon, it was my sister’s soul that pushed me”, says Lauren. “At times the pain and exhaustion that I felt temporarily took away the pain in my heart of having lost my best friend. I still want to pick up the phone to call her”, reflects Lauren.

Another source of inspiration for Lauren comes from a quote by Charles R. Swindoll, “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.” Lauren responds, “my reaction is to fight, to carry my sisters memory with every step and throughout life itself. Think about if it was your sister, daughter, wife, cousin, niece, granddaughter or friend. Wouldn’t you do EVERYTHING you can?”