Memorial walk to honor Carroll County girl who touched many lives

May 15, 1998|By Lisa Breslin | Lisa Breslin,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Lindsay Scott's family photo album is filled with pictures of a 12-year-old girl who loved animals, American Girl dolls, Beanie Babies, spicy crabs, Victorian lace, God, her friends and her family.

A closer look at the photos might reveal that Lindsay had cystic fibrosis, a congenital disease that sparks constant infections and destroys the lungs. But those pictures are few and hard to discern.

Though the disease haunted Lindsay for 12 years, and took her life in March, she, her brother, Wes, and her parents, Sandy and Steve Scott, worked at living like other families. They had crab feasts, miniature golf parties and memorable vacations to places like Disney World.

Lindsay's battle became the community's battle. With each victory or painful setback, her church, the business community, the public school system, friends, even Carroll County residents who didn't know Lindsay stepped in to comfort and to help.

From noon until 4 p.m. Sunday, the community will pull together again for the Lindsay Scott Memorial Walk to raise money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

More than 150 people have pre-registered but organizers hope to have three times as many participants. The nearly 4-mile walk will begin at Westminster City Park and will pass the schools Lindsay attended and her mother's store, The Hickory Stick on Liberty Street. The walk will end at the city park.

"This is the first walk for cystic fibrosis in Carroll County, and it's Lindsay's walk," said Laurie Walters, media specialist at East Middle School, who worked with Mary Peters, school health nurse, and Jennifer Walko, a math resource teacher, to organize the event.

Lindsay attended East Middle School for nearly two years and developed friendships so close that classmates who ate lunch with her every day can't eat in the cafeteria without her. They have lunch with Peters now and will continue to do so for the rest of the year.

"Lindsay was so shy and so brave. She was something else," Peters said. "When she smiled she lit up the room. Her friendships were so strong."

East Middle students and staff raised $100 to have Lindsay's name inscribed on the Wall of Honor when they went on a field trip to Ellis Island in March. Lindsay's mother also received $100 from the school to purchase flowers for a memorial garden in front of the school.

The garden is filled with Lindsay's favorite colors, purple and pink, and some of her favorite flowers, lobelia, sage, and dianthus. A weeping cherry tree, donated by Lowes, is in the FTC center.

"It will stay small like Lindsay," Sandy Scott said. "And it's feminine."

With the help of Stan Dabkowski at Spring Meadow Farms near Hampstead, Sandy designed a garden that will bloom year round.

Dabkowski's help, the donation from Lowes, letters, a song written for Lindsay's memorial service, and donations to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation are only hints of the support the Scotts have received.

Their Carroll Community Church friend, Ed Combs, a no-nonsense kind of guy, helped pull off a hamster heist that will always be remembered because "it was the last time we saw Lindsay smile," Sandy said.

Lindsay's reunion with her hamster in the Johns Hopkins Hospital pediatric intensive care unit was March 3. The day before, Sandy and family friend, Linda Cole, eased Lindsay's fears about death by reading from the Bible and assuring her that she would go to heaven.

They had a doctor answer Lindsay's questions about the ventilator that would soon do the breathing for her. And then,after many sleepless nights, Lindsay told her mom she felt at peace.

"I want to go home," Lindsay said.

"We want to take you home, Lindsay, but we can't," her mother answered, not knowing at first that Lindsay meant home to God. She died on the morning of March 5.

Her struggle made it easier for other children, like her brother, who have cystic fibrosis. Wes, who attends Westminster High School, has never been hospitalized.

"Lindsay took part in a study at Hopkins for an inhaled antibiotic that the Food and Drug Administration eventually approved," Sandy said. "And because of Lindsay, the waiting list criteria for a lung transplant will change and people can get one sooner.

"I don't want Lindsay to be forgotten, and I know she won't be," Sandy said, pointing to an inscription on the back of Lindsay's sixth-grade picture. "A life that touches the hearts of others goes on forever."

For a sponsor pamphlet, or information about the Lindsay Scott Memorial Walk, call Laurie Walters at 410-751-3656.

Pub Date: 5/15/98

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