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Journal Update
Total Entries: 1,127
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  • Jun 25, 2011 9:12am

    Dear Mary

    Jill's Caringbridge journal is a lasting gift to all of us.  Her precious words, written after a daunting diagnosis right up to her last days, light up the world with hope, determination, optimism and most of all..courage.  Jill was and remains a teacher whose influence on so many will live on forever.

    The part you played in Jill's life is so clear to me now--you recognized her strong spirit (even when she was a little girl), and you didn't get in the way of Jill.  You didn't let your Motherly protectiveness be larger than the adventurous, ambitious, courageous spirit that she was.  She led the way in her life, even when stricken and weakened, and you stood with her always supporting her unique strength and strong will. 

    The generous and beautiful words you have written on this anniversary are a gift to Jill and a gift to all. The grace by which you have traversed this past year of grief is a testament of your pure Motherly love for Jill and your family.  Jill is proud of you, we all are.

    May God bless you and your beautiful family. 


    PS I will never look at the Moon in the same way.




    Jody Scott

  • Jun 25, 2011 2:25am

    Mary, I was thinking about you and your family all day today. What a beautiful letter you have written. And thank you for giving the world the gift of such an extraordinary young woman. Jill touched so many lives in her short life. You must be very proud of her. My love to all of you, Janis

    Janis Buckles

  • Jun 25, 2011 12:26am

    Dear Mary,
    I am both crying and smiling reading your message here. I only know your daughter because she was a Golden Bear. I never met her, but "Jill's Word to Live By" are on the wall of my office. I read them often.
    If I could have met Jill, and if I ever have the privilege of meeting you, I would say thank you - thank you for giving us a glimpse of a life well lived, of the courage and the laughter and the joy. Thank you for letting us witness the journey, and for sharing not only the thoughts and gestures of Jill, but the insights of your large family and friends. I will look at the moon differently now - and I will think of you and your daughter and all the lives you both touch...

    Jean Strauss '78

    Jean Strauss

  • Jun 24, 2011 11:36pm

    Mary--I can't imagine how difficult it is to write about Jill one year to the day...  In one year, Jill has helped raise more money for lung cancer.  She inspired her team.  She touched millions with story of courage and determination.  She set a path for us to follow.

    Thank you for sharing Jill with all of us.  Thank you for your smiles when I know your heart is so heavy that I can't imagine how you can stand.  Thank you for reminding us how lucky we are to have Jill on our team and in our heart forever!

    You, your family, and Jill inspire me...

    My best to you all.

    Denise Sangster

    Denise Sangster

  • Jun 24, 2011 11:27pm

    What you wrote is absolutely beautiful.  Jill will never die in the minds and hearts of those of us who were lucky enough to have been touched by her (I met her at the Living Room the day she graduated from Berkeley).  Jill definitely left a legacy to those of us who knew her as well as to all touched by Lung Cancer.  Jill's light will never go out.Warmly,Sally 

    Sally Samuels

  • Jun 24, 2011 9:01pm

    Our love and prayers are with you today.  Jeghers-Guiney Family

    Kathleen Guiney

  • Jun 24, 2011 2:55pm

    Remembering Jill especially today.  And our dearest thoughts to her parents and family and of course, to Jack! We think of Jill so often and our daughter speaks of her on a very regular basis.  It is a somber and yet sweet thing that she remains so very present in so many people's lives.  Thank you for sharing your beautiful daughter with so many people.  much much love, Deirdre, Liz, Kathleen and James

    Deirdre McLoughlin

  • Jun 20, 2011 11:24pm

    Hey,You know I love Jill. Can I just tag-team Lynette's post? I still think of Jill in the present tense. She is still with me, as I know she is with you. It's just different now. She inspires me -- BIG TIME!Love you,Sherri :)

    Sherri Oakley

  • Jun 20, 2011 10:22pm

    Dear Mary, Jim, Kevin and Jimmy,

    Forever young, forever beautiful, forever inspiring, forever remembered by all of us. Jill lives in the hearts of thousands.  I am very blessed to have known Jill and think of her so, so often. . . . . .  She never ceases to bring a smile to my face and tears to my eyes.  

    With much, much love,


    Lynette Ley

  • May 27, 2011 1:20pm

    I just want to send my condolences to Costello family, I read the article on Jill,I'm in shock and disbelief that at such a young age,that a strong,and determined young woman was taken from US all.... I'm in southern ontario. and we need to get the word out about the lack of funding for lung cancer. She has been such an inspiration for me. thank you Costello Family, and Sports Illustrated for sharing Jill with the world.

    R French.

    ron french

  • Feb 11, 2011 4:20pm

    Dear Costello Family,
    I was reading Dan Waeger's blog this afternoon and saw the link to the Sports Illus. story about your precious Jill.  What an incredibly inspiring story.  Our hearts go out to your family. We had a similar experience.  Our precious Katherine was diagnosed with small cell lung cancer in 2000 when she was 23 and a nursing student at UNC-CH.  She lived for almost five years.  She too was able to finish college.  Katherine was a soccer player from 2nd grade through high school.  Katherine had two older brothers as well.  Another connection is that Katherine's boyfriend was a student at UC-B when he died in an avalanche at Tahoe in 1999.  Life is strange.  Mary, if you ever feel like connecting I would love to hear from you. Warm regards, Anne Wilson  828-433-0846 or email

    Anne Wilson

  • Jan 25, 2011 4:59pm

    Dear Costello Family,

    What a brave and wonderful girl you raised in Jill.  I read with great sadness the article in SI and was very moved by her courageous attitude and her mantra not to dwell on the past or fear the future but to make the most of today.

              I am a 65 year old male diagnosed at the end of October of 2009 with small cell bladder cancer.  Ironically I was sitting the oncology center receiving my 9th round of chemo when I read the article.  The fact that she wanted a dog for graduation really hit home for me.  My dog of 14 years died this past summer and I have been resisting all my family's efforts to get another.  I am now rethinking this decision.

              Please accept my heartfelt condolences for your loss.

    Anthony Fisichella

  • Jan 20, 2011 5:06pm

    In honor of Jill Costello

    Francesca Fijat

  • Jan 5, 2011 9:44am

    I was so pleased to see the article on Jill in Sports Illustrated.  Even though I followed her posts diligently the last year, the article really helped flesh out the stories, personalities, and remarkable achievements of Jill and the team.  I'm so glad the article was done.

    Ilisabeth Smith Bornstein

  • Dec 22, 2010 8:25pm

    Dear Costello Family,

    I recently read the SI article, and noted a few similarities between your daughter and my mother, as well as a few interesting connections between your daughter and myself. 

    As far as my mother goes, both she and Jill were not of the largest physical presence, but both had a large personal presence among those whom they knew.  Additionally, both were cruelly pulled away from their loved ones by cancer, though my mother's was a painful 4-year struggle with a creatively-spreading Breast Cancer. 

    As for myself, both Jill and I attended Jesuit high schools (Xavier - NYC), my home parish and her grammar school share a common patron saint (St. Brendan - Brooklyn), and we were within a year of each other's age. 

    With the Christmas season upon us, I know well how emotions can stir at this time, and truly I wish that I could say that it gets better, but sitting here 5 years since my mother's death I cannot say that to you; it does become different, but I, personally, cannot say that it becomes better.  What I can say is that you and your daughter will be among my thoughts and prayers as the season progresses, and that, with you permission, I should like to have Mass said for Jill, so that the St. Brendan parish family of Brooklyn can reach across the country and join with the St. Brendan parish family of San Fran, and that the Xavier community of NYC (and beyond) can join with the St. Ignatius community of SF, and that together we can remember the courage of a young woman in the face of the darkest adversity.

    Please be assured of my heartfelt condolences.

    Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam.

    James Edgell

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