resting place I visit
flowers there with
one knows the heartache
turn and leave you
A million times I've needed
a million times I've cried
if love could have saved
you never would have died
It broke my heart to lose
but you did not go alone
for part of me went with
the day God called you home
The following is a speech
given by Stacey Malegni at various MADD occasions and high school drug
and alcohol awareness talks. Please pass this story on to as many
as you can to help raise awareness for this cause and to help keep
Malegni alive in memory.
Before I introduce myself,
I would like to ask you to listen closely to the following story:
Picture if you would a
and two children driving down a very busy road of approximately three
on either side of a large median.
The two children, a boy and
a girl are in the back seat of the car, while the woman is driving
mindful of the children she so generously loves in the rear. The three
have just left a toy store and have just spent the better part of the
together; laughing, joking, playing, hugging and talking. The love they
share is effortless, real and true. Do you see them? Try to
the deep love they share together.
The two children are now
with delight, what it is that they have just recieved at the store. One
child, the boy, has a paint set sitting on his lap that he has opened.
His head pointing downward as he looks at it with excitement. Meanwhile
the fate that is
to become them, enters the road way some ways back. The family members
continue their conversation, and the woman is unsuspecting of the
driver following from behind.
Picture the driver's long
dark hair covering part of his young face, still absorbed with alcohol
from the sleepless night before. He is talking to his friend beside
His drunken eyes struggling to see the road in front as he tries to
the turn to the left.
Can you see him?
Try as he might, he cannot
do it. Maintaining control of the car is not within him. The front
are split while pieces of cement are thrown, as the car first impacts
median. He is now air born, and then sent into the side of the woman
with her precious cargo. The dark haired driver is three times over the
legal limit for the consumption of alcohol. Perhaps you might wonder
he even made it into the car that day, or why his friend trusted him to
As I now picture this
as I hope you are, I am bothered with the thoughts of the car plowing
the side of these loving people.
Can you picture it? Replay
the accident again in your head. Can you see it?
Can you see the blood, and
broken bones of the boy, and his beautiful face left perfectly intact?
Perhaps it's a chance for someone to see his angelic face one last time
before they say good bye to him.
Do you want to run to
He is still trapped in his
car seat. The very seat that held him defenseless against this dreadful
car. His spider man shoes he loved so much are still on his feet, still
clutching the store bag and toys.
Do you want to take his
and tell him how much he is probably loved, as his still, little body
Do you still want to help
As much as you might like
to, you cannot. It is another who runs to him and puts her kind hand on
his forehead. Sadly, there is nothing she can do. The stranger kneels
and cries because she has realized the boy she wanted desperately to
Perhaps there is hope.
God took the small boy, before the back of his head was laid open, with
the weapon of the vehicles deadly side view mirror.
The woman in front is semi
conscious. She is alive, but has serious internal injuries. The crash
so violent that her seat belt has ripped into her delicate body.
Do you see her?
She is flown by helicopter
to the nearest critical care hospital. It will then take three weeks
5 surgeries, but to no avail. Her family will soon be forced to turn
her life support. They will continue for what seems, 30 eternal
watching in agony as her misery finally comes to an end.
Now, I want you to picture,
the arrival of the surviving family to the hospital where they find the
boy. They look down at his lifeless body, and then realize why it was,
just the girl, the policeman walked to the door that day.
The boy is still lying
on the cold steel table.
Do you see him?
The white towel soaked in
his blood, covering the wounds around the back of his sweet head. The
is now crying uncontrollably for the boy they loved so dearly. There
be no more Birthdays for him, he had just turned five, and now is
frozen in time.
Before turning away from
story, imagine that these are your family members. Perhaps it is a
mother or aunt. Or father, uncle or brother. Perhaps it is you with
My name is Stacey Malegni,
and the story that I have just narrated could have easily have been
or someone close to you. But, luckily for you, it was not.
This is not a fictional
but a tragic event in my own life.
Did you think I was the
in the car? Or, at first, the woman in the front seat?
I truly wish it had been me
instead of the ones I loved. I would have gladly have been a
in place of my mother in law in the front, or my son and daughter in
There is not a day that
by that I do not picture the violence of this accident. In fact, I
I torture myself, playing it over and over, again and again in my
I often wonder why I do
to myself. Do I think it will suddenly turn out differently? Is it
I was not there to bear witness? I must not have thought the worst
possibly happen to me, to us, and to our family. Because, no one ever
It is so easy, as I sit
in my own seat, day after day, to put myself in their position on that
terrible afternoon. I ask you to do the same when you sit inside the
of your own car.
It is easy, if you try, to
see them; as they were, what became of them, and how it has affected my
family's life. A husband living each painful day without his only son,
a daughter playing without her brother. And I looking on, at this
in the face of tragedy. A family that has been, and forever will be
I'd like for you to know,
it is for my beautiful son that I am no longer afraid of dying, as
many people are. I secretly long for that day to come in order to see
beautiful face once more. For there is not one day that goes by, that I
do not fight the tears and the deafening agony of my heart, overflowing
into my head.
I try extremely hard not to
let it consume me, as it is a constant struggle for me to feel any
at all. What's worse, is that this is how I am to live the rest of my
him...a life without my son?
His name was Dominic
He died on a busy Atlanta road, at 2 O'clock in the afternoon on
November 7th, 2004. He was hit by a young man of just 19, an illegal
from Mexico, ironically with the intentions of having a better life. He
is now serving out his 20 year sentence in a federal
Again, before you turn away
from this story, think about being an ambassador for this innocent
Tell others of him. Take with you his story into your heart and think
others by choosing not to drink and drive. Or, by convincing someone
to do the same.
and parents, empower your kids with this information. And
stand up to the pressures of youth with conviction.
I am putting the memory of
my son, Dominic, in your hands. It is my hope, that with you, his name
will continue to live on and perhaps even save a life.
Thy Will Be Done
"I'll lend you for a little
A child of mine," He said
"For you to love there while
And mourn for when he's dead
It may be six or eleven years,
twenty-two or three
But will you, till I call
take care of him for me
He'll bring his charm to gladden
and should his stay be brief
You'll have his lovely memory
as solace for your grief
I cannot promise he will stay
since all from earth return
But there are lessons taught
I want this child to learn
I've looked this wide world
in my search for teachers
And from the throungs that
life's lanes, I have selected
For I know you'll give him
all your love
nor think the labor vain
Nor hate me when I come to
to take him back again
I fancy that I hear you say
"Dear Lord, Thy will be done
For all the joy my child
the risk of grief we'll run
We'll shelter him with tenderness
We'll love him while we may
And for the happiness we've
Forever grateful stay
But should the angels call
Much sooner than we've planned
We'll brave the bitter grief
And try to understand
DOMINIC JOSEPH MALEGNI
Dominic Joseph Malegni, age
5, of Woodstock, Georgia, passed away Sunday, November 7, 2004. Dominic
was the cherished son of Nick and Stacey Malegni and the adventurous
brother of Nicole. Dominic is survived by his parents, Nick and Stacey
Malegni; his sister, Nicole; his paternal grandparents, Antoinette
and Sam Malegni; his maternal grandparents, Pete and Paula Phillips and
Bruce Crow; his great-grandmother, Eileen Thomas; his aunt and uncle,
and Stacie Malegni; and his cousin, Joseph "Jake" William.
Dominic was in kindergarten
class at the American Heritage Academy in Canton, GA. He dearly loved
teachers, classmates, friends and family. His favorite sport was Dodge
Ball. His favorite pastime was spending his allowance at the Dollar
His best friend was his sister. His greatest comfort came from being in
the lap of his mom; and if you asked him who his hero was, he'd smile
say confidently "my dad."
A prayer service is
for Wednesday, November 10 at 7 p.m. with visitation from 5 p.m. to 8
at the Woodstock Funeral Home, 8855 Main St., Woodstock, GA 30188. The
memorial service is scheduled for 11 a.m. Thursday, November 11 at St.
Michael the Archangel, 490 Arnold Mill Rd., Woodstock, GA 30188. In
of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the
Health care of Atlanta Foundation in memory of Dominic Malegni, 1687
Circle, N.E., Atlanta, GA 30329, 404-785-7300,
lose our parents, we
are orphans. When we lose our spouse we are widows or widowers. But
is no word for a parent who has lost their child.
in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on 11/10/2004.
"Grieving is a
It's okay to experience
that process. To deny
the bitterness of the sorrow
is to deny some of
the sweetness of the comfort when it comes."
Chieko N. Okazaki