Milford Family Turns Tragedy Into Action: "Random Act of Kindnes - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Milford Family Turns Tragedy Into Action: "Random Act of Kindness Day" Recognized

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Madison Peterman and Hannah Davies, the week of the deadly accident (Source: Carrie Peterman) Madison Peterman and Hannah Davies, the week of the deadly accident (Source: Carrie Peterman)
Hannah Davies and Madison Peterman both passed away from the 2009 accident (Source: Carrie Peterman) Hannah Davies and Madison Peterman both passed away from the 2009 accident (Source: Carrie Peterman)
Scott and Carrie Peterman have turned their grief into action (Source: Carrie Peterman) Scott and Carrie Peterman have turned their grief into action (Source: Carrie Peterman)

MILFORD, Del. - A grieving family has turned tragedy into action, almost seven years after a deadly car accident north of Milford. It was on April 13, 2009 that a car accident lead to the death of 9-year old Madison Peterman, her friend 8-year old Hannah Davies, and her grandmother Sandy Peterman. Naturally the accident devastated Carrie Peterman, Madison's mother. 

"My heart left that day," she said. "My heart was taken from me. She was my best friend. She was my life. And I went home that night to a house that was no longer a home."

For years after the accident, Madison's birthday of March 25 was a day of mourning and sadness. In 2014, Peterman decided she wanted to celebrate her life instead, and so she created the "Random Act of Kindness Day," to be held every birthday anniversary. 

“It was the first year since losing her," she said of the 2014 birthday. "That I actually smiled and laughed on her birthday. And we had fun. And that's what Madison's spirit was all about." 

The event quickly spread across state lines, and even reached various international communities. In 2015, the towns of Milford, Slaughter Beach and Harrington passed resolution to make the event an official holiday. And this year the state General Assembly did as well. The measure passed the house unanimously on Thursday. 

The accident had an especially close connection the general assembly because Rep. Jack Peterman was the husband and grandfather of Sandy and Madison respectively. Due to health problems, Rep. Peterman was unable to participate in the legislative process, but his colleague Rep. Bobby Outten was the sponsor, and called it an honor. 

“It's just a good feeling," Outten said. "And you pass it on." 

Carrie Peterman said the holiday is all about fulfilling her daughter's legacy. 

“There is nothing better for me as Madison's mom," she said. "Then to know that she is being remembered in such a wonderful way. Her spirit is still here." 

Madison would have been celebrating here 16th birthday Friday, and Hannah would have been 14.

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