Teen who died on last day of school was ‘the calm to our storm,’ aunt says
May 25, 2023, 6:43 PM | Updated: Jul 30, 2023, 9:41 pm
WEST BOUNTIFUL, Utah — The family of a West Bountiful teen who died after an accident while with friends earlier this week said she always put other people first.
Madolin Morley, 16, was with her best friends Tuesday celebrating the end of her sophomore year at Viewmont High School.
It was supposed to be a happy and exciting occasion. Instead, her family will associate the end of the school year with her death.
“Our worst nightmare,” said Laura Morley, Madolin’s aunt.
“This was a tragedy,” Morley’s husband Matt Morley added.
What was supposed to be the start to another summer of making memories came to an unexpected ending.
“They were in a hammock and some structure came apart and unfortunately is what took Madolin’s life,” Morley said.
Madolin was close to her uncle and aunt.
“We look at her as almost a daughter to us,” Morley added.
“She was the calm to our chaos,” Laura Morley said.
They said the 16-year-old led by example for her younger brother and sister and cousins.
“Always had a helmet on or a life jacket. She was like a little mother,” Matt Morley said.
They’ll remember her piano playing. “One of her favorite songs she shared was from the movie ‘Up,’” Morley added.
He remembered Madolin’s academic accomplishments. “She fulfilled a lot of her dreams in the short 16 years that she lived. But she wanted to chase academics.”
Beyond that, they’ll remember her kindness.
A sea of white balloons from friends in the family’s yard paid tribute to the welcoming young woman she was.
“Madolin always put other people first,” Morley said.
She was a few streets away, at her best friend’s house when the accident happened.
“We’ve found peace with their family and love them and will continue to support them as if they were family as well,” Morley said.
Her legacy lives on in the front yard of her childhood home, and in her family and friends’ hearts.
Laura Morley said, “Even when the balloons are gone, we’ll have the messages.”
A GoFundMe* account was set up to help her family with funeral costs. You can contribute here.
*KSL TV does not assure that the money deposited to the account will be applied for the benefit of the persons named as beneficiaries. If you are considering a deposit to the account, you should consult your own advisers and otherwise proceed at your own risk.