“Maddie” …About you!
by Cate Murway

[Grew up in a small town
I'll spread my wings and I'll learn how to fly. 
I'll do what it takes till I touch the sky. 
But I won't forget all the ones that I love
Though it's not easy to tell you goodbye
I'll take a risk, take a chance, 
Make a change, and break away] 

Bracketed lyrics taken from "Breakaway" by Kelly Clarkson

Madeline Elizabeth Barrett was an early 1988 Christmas present for first time parents, Linda Marie [Marison], Bishop Conwell ’80 and Thomas Joseph Barrett, Harry S. Truman ‘82. Voted “Most Likely to Succeed” by her peers, Maddie loves the music of Kelly Brianne Clarkson, the Grammy Award-winning American singer who won the highly publicized first season of American Idol. 

Maddie is her name. Cross Country is her game. She competes [often solo female] to run a course over open, rough terrain faster than other teams and has been named to the Fall Golden XC 2nd Team after placing 6th in her Bicentennial Athletic League [B.A.L.] Championship. Her planned “Breakaway” is her clear first choice “Early Decision” to Pre-Law to obtain insights essential to the law student, at Arizona State University in landlocked, generally flat Tempe Campus, in Maricopa County. Maddie witnessed the strong performance of the NCAA Division 1 Arizona Sun Devils at the University of Pennsylvania Penn Relays in Franklin Field, Philadelphia and her dream was born.

Her SpecialEd Life skills teacher mom and her plumber tradesman dad met through friends, married and settled in the small comfortable town, constantly improving Bristol Borough, which they have grown to love. She and her dancer/ field hockey athlete sister, Danielle Marie, BHS ‘09 and their baseball/basketball/track athlete brother, Thomas Joseph are academically thriving in the Bristol Borough Schools. Maddie has been challenged in the gifted enrichment programs and has consistently earned the honor of Student of the Month since beginning at Snyder-Girotti Elementary School. This past November and December, Maddie was recognized as BHS Commended and Student of the Month. As namesake of her late grandmother, Madeline Boyle, Maddie decided to read a book her grandmom had cherished: The Power of Positive Thinking, the best selling 1952 book by Rev. Norman Vincent Peale (1898-1993).  She apparently absorbed the blended biblical teachings and unparalleled practical modern advice, exhibiting an extraordinarily focused capacity for achieving happiness and success while she plans her future goals. 

The prospective pre-law National Honor Society student, who won “best attorney” last year, will provide the opening statement for the upcoming PA statewide Jamie Anderson v. Taylor Williams civil action. She will participate as the defense lead attorney for the cadre of dedicated professionals who maintain the highest standards of high school mock trial competitions.

Her favorite show is “Shark”, about a notorious L.A. defense attorney who becomes a prosecutor; and best movie choice is “Legally Blonde”, the fictional story of a valley girl's quest to be regarded seriously at Harvard Law School.
Maddie’s ultimate dream goal is to be appointed to the Supeme court- the only part of the judicial branch of the United States federal government explicitly specified in the United States Constitution (Article III). Per her BHS Attorney Coach, William James Salerno, Esq., “Madeline should pursue her dreams”.

She could be called a workaholic, but she also makes time for fun.
A self-proclaimed Type “A” personality, Madeline is truly a multi-faceted young woman! As long as the venture is high energy and competitive, she’s interested.

Barrister-to-be Barrett is also a flautist, [flute tones are sweet and blend well with other instruments] in the BHS band and proudly proclaims that she played every note in the “Hallelujah Chorus” from Messiah by Georg Friederich Händel [1685-1759], the greatest composer of his day. Country music is her favorite, and Maddie has even participated in square dancing, with the "proper" attire of cotton/gingham dresses.

The American Association of University Woman, a legacy of leadership celebrating their 125th year, offered a “Career in Math & Science” Essay contest. Maddie stepped up to the challenge, presenting a dissertation about girls and education, and she was honored with an award for her paper. 

In Middle School, as part of Enrichment Program “Digital World, Integrating Technology in the Classroom” offered by Dr. Phyllis Girard of the B.C.I.U., Maddie prepared a Video Yearbook. With Dr. Girard’s guidance, she and the other gifted students captured moments that constituted meaning using video cameras, photography, art, and music to record their experiences. At the project’s completion, Maddie accepted the opportunity to make a presentation to the conference audience, accompanied by a slideshow, at the Philadelphia Convention Center.

Maddie’s parents have offered her the old-fashioned town security she loves in a fast paced world. Arizona was the 48th state admitted into the U.S. and the last of the contiguous states admitted, but the first choice for Maddie who “hates the cold and wants to live near a city”. A transcontinental decision is a big one, so St. Joseph University in Philadelphia and Widener University in Chester are closer proximity options. Pre-law remains her solid academic vocation and Maddie feels well prepared to start her quest.

“May it please the court” Madeline Barrett!

[…that I'm thankful
for the blessing
and the lessons that I've learned w/you
by my side]
Bracketed lyrics taken from "Thankful" by Kelly Clarkson

To recommend a Bristol borough youth to be spotlighted: 
e-mail vjmrun@yahoo.com

Madeline Elizabeth Barrett
brother, Tom
 Maddie's parents