17 thoughts on “One Last Time

  1. Pingback: Vivian Connell: Her Last Post: Farewell to a Beautiful Soul | Diane Ravitch's blog

  2. I am overwhelmed by your words, Vivian. I wish the entire world would read this and begin a change. You are an amazing, inspiring, Angel on earth. I pray that your remaining days will be Blessed and I pray for your loved ones left behind. May G-d wrap you in His arms and may you feel His love, grace and mercy.
    Rose Krynski
    You taught Ben Krynski at Providence High School


      • Dear Vivian, There is not a moment that goes by that I am not thinking and praying for you. Your finALS essay has forever changed me. I look forward to the day that we get to know each other in heaven. You are so very special and you have touched so many lives. God Bless you and your family. Love,
        Rose Krynski
        I am so touched by your response about Ben’s fainting! LOL


  3. Thank you for sharing your wisdom and passion and remarkable strength. You’re an excellent teacher and we’re very grateful. My wife, Louise, and I are friends of Deirdre’s– we just saw her and her kids a few days ago here in Charleston and she told us she saw you last week. Peace, love, and blessings to you and your family.


  4. Vivian- I feel so lucky that our paths crossed in this life. Your inspiration will never leave our hearts. You, Paul, Hagen, and Hadley are in our family’s thoughts and prayers.


  5. Beautiful, stunning, heartbreaking words. Bless you as you leave your suffering and land softly at Heaven’s merciful gate. Love to you, amazing, wondrous, brave soul, and your dear family ♡


  6. Vivian,
    We have never had the opportunity to meet, but I worked with Paul years ago. I have followed your posts and laughed and cried at the same time. This last post, for many reasons makes me want to help make certain that your dreams for a better and just America are a reality. Thank you for your constant commitment to make this world a better place. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.



  7. Vivian – In real life, I don’t believe that our paths ever crossed, but I came to know your writing through the marvelous Woody-Dillard clan in Virginia. I have silently followed your journey lo these many months and I wanted to crawl from the ultimate hiding space that is my laptop screen to tell you that your writing mattered to more people than you can even imagine. I am surely not the only silent fan. I have been been waiting for this post and, as I expected, it is both heart-breaking and hopeful.

    “As I often told my students, few of us will be a Mother Teresa or a Hitler, but we will each make the world a little better or worse.

    May we all strive to make it better.”

    This is essentially the only real thing I want to teach my son. Thank you for articulating it so perfectly.

    Be at peace, Vivian. Thank you for sharing yourself with us.


  8. Vi, your blog is compelling… should be subtitled, “My Heart Laid Bare”.

    “If any ambitious man have a fancy to revolutionize, at one effort, the universal world of human thought, human opinion, and human sentiment, the opportunity is his own — the road to immortal renown lies straight, open, and unencumbered before him. All that he has to do is to write and publish a very little book. Its title should be simple — a few plain words — My Heart Laid Bare. But — this little book must be true to its title.” – Edgar Allan Poe

    Much love,


  9. Hi Vi,
    You probably don’t remember me but I was a tear ahead of you, at Eastside. I only wish I had known you better. I echo so many of your comments about racial injustice and have worked diligently to make a tiny diffifernce in my small corner of the world. I’ve mentored 24 (all intercity) kids over the years.; a fraction of the hundreds, if not thousands of lives you’ve been able to pour into.

    I can’t imagine the pain, both physically and emotionally, that you and your family must be going through. I will be praying earnestly that God gives you great comfort and peace as you go through these next few days and weeks.

    Your life is touching and fueling so many (like me) to make the most out of the few days we have on this earth.

    God speed my friend.


  10. My beautiful friend Vivian,

    Pretty ironic the Olympics are about to start as it’s the ethos of our friendship. 20 years ago we met and immediately I was impressed…Paul too. Your energy and intelligence was attractive and inspiring. Your pure heart, kind soul and strong conviction, fantastic traits. Yet every now and then you let out a softer side and there it was, perfection. Alas, Paul got the better of me and you two have led a storybook life ever since. I appreciate you looking after him for these many years and I knew he’d stay by his ‘bride’ forever. You make a perfect team.

    In reading your blog it’s obvious you haven’t lost the ability to inspire. You’ve used words and language to teach us forever and that will never change. While the end of this battle may not go as planned I know your faith guarantees victory in the war. I will continue to keep you and the family in my prayers and know a large part of you will live on in all of the lives you’ve touched.

    Love you now and always,



  11. Ms, Connell,
    You taught my daughter, Lauren, at Providence High School. To say you left a profound and positive impact on her life would be an understatement. Thank you for being the wonderful teacher that you are and for impacting the lives of many young impressionable teens! I too have much to learn from your dedication to righting what is wrong with our world. Wishing you and your family peace.
    Thank you for being the wonderful person you are.
    Sharon Cichcoki


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