Jacqueline Maidana, devoted friend, neighbor, teacher, civic activist, artist, gardener, lover of nature, passed from this earth after a fierce battle with pancreatic cancer at 5:55 PM on Monday, July 26. She had been receiving paliative care at Fisher House Hospice in Amherst MA and recieved company from many of her friends who were able to travel there. Her sister, Karen Dahl, will be planning a memorial service for Jacqueline sometime in the near future. I will post information about the memorial service.
I extend a huge expression of thanks to very many people who have contributed to the Go Fund Me fundraising campaign to support Jacqueline and her family in handling her various end of life expenses. If you still wish to contribute, I will leave the campaign open for a while especially to accomodate those who may not have heard about the situation until more recently. Many many thanks from me personally and from her family. Jacqueline was stunned to see how many people expressed their love and caring through their donations and heartfelt notes. It was great to see her know that while she was still here.
Judy Phelps and Friends of Jacqueline
Farewell fund for Jacqueline Maidana
Jacqueline Maidana, devoted friend, neighbor, teacher, civic activist, artist, gardener, lover of nature
If you’ve found this GoFundMe page, you probably already know Jacqueline Maidana.
You might not know that last fall she learned she had pancreatic cancer.
That’s why Jacqueline needs your help, if you can afford to donate: to cover some of the costs of her final days. Hospice care is expensive, for example, and Medicare does not cover all the costs.
It’s time to help one of the most generous people we know
Whether you call her Jacqueline or Jacqui or Jak, you probably know her as someone who has often put others first.
Now we have the chance to help her out.
With our generosity we can show Jacqueline and her family that we have her back. We can help her stay in hospice where she has compassionate skilled nursing and palliative care to insulate her from the exhausting brutality of the cancer.
With love and in appreciation of your kind wishes and for anything you can do to help with Jacqueline’s material needs at this time,
—Friends of Jacqueline Maidana, July 1, 2021
Funds will be withdrawn by Judy Phelps, retired teacher and adjunct professor, and a cofounder of CATS (Connecticut Argentine Tango Society), sister tango community to Valley Tango. All funds will be disbursed to Jacqueline’s family to pay her outstanding medical and final expenses.
More about Jacqueline, her care, and costs
Jacqueline Maidana is a Boston-born Red Sox fan who relocated to Northampton in the 1970s as a single mom. She lived near the Lilly Library in Florence for years, where many recognized her as the one with the great hats and gardens, even if they did not know her name. There she also had artist studio space, where she began a postage-stamp milonga, a party for people to dance Argentine tango, at the moment when Americans began to rediscover the dance of the country where her father had grown up.
When she moved to Clark House in downtown Amherst, it was a return to the place where she had earned her undergraduate degree in the UMass program for nontraditional students. She rented a corner in a shared studio up a narrow stairway in the center of Amherst and immersed herself in civic life, serving for many years in Amherst Town Meeting representing District 5, and on the Town Meeting Coordinating Committee.
Jacqueline remained connected to Florence with her Valley Tango show every Wednesday at Valley Free Radio where she shared music, readings, and community announcements.
Wherever Jacqueline has gone, she is known for her passions: for dance, plants, the beach and wild water of any kind, the beauty and challenge of both the natural world and works of art, and for making the world a better place.
Jaqueline now weathers her last challenge, in hospice finally after months of treatment that kept her alive long enough to say goodbye in person to so many who had been isolated—along with her—during the past year. Sharing laughs, stories, and hugs were worth the rigors of treatment for Jacqueline. Along with one more spring, and, of course, the chance to choose a final round of colorful plants to add to the Clark House public garden she’s been tending to put her Master Gardener skills to good use.
Expenses mount quickly now. The hospice bill alone comes in at nearly $500 per day for the part not covered by insurance. To say nothing of medical copays, final expenses, and other material needs not covered by Jacqueline’s Medicare and insurance.
At this difficult time, she and her family grapple with how to pay for necessary care that exceeds their limited means. It’s an indignity for any of us to have to acknowledge publicly that we lack the funds to die in peace. Especially someone so proud and determinedly self-sufficient as Jacqueline. But that’s the reality. We hope you in Jacqueline’s wide circle of friends, associates, admirers, and fellow gadflies will help if it’s in your power.
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