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Meghan Elizabeth Sullivan

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Meghan Elizabeth Sullivan Obituary
Meghan Elizabeth Sullivan
Always smiling, Loving Daughter, Sister, Granddaughter, and Auntie

CHELMSFORD -- Meghan Elizabeth Sullivan of Chelmsford is known by all for the biggest smile and the best hugs that anyone could give. Meghan was born on June 27, 1987 in Lowell. Her Mom, Cheryl (Colbert) Sullivan Staveley and her Dad, the late Lowell Police Captain John E. Sullivan, knew that they had a very special daughter from the moment that she was born. Her Dad's nickname for her was "Wild Irish!" Meghan's older sister, Kaitlin Sullivan-Freimuth, was the person that Meghan most wanted to emulate and be with.

One of Meghan's first loves was gymnastics. Meghan started at All Star Gymnastics in Chelmsford, when she was 2 and for the next 16 years became part of their gymnastics program and family! Meghan danced for several years at Center Stage Dance Academy in Tyngsboro and then found her love of Baton Twirling when she joined The Suburbanette's Twirl Team. Meghan loved marching in the parades, baton competitions and recitals with The Suburbanettes. She was a Suburanette twirler from ages 10 to 16.

Meghan was always a very loving, kind and giving young woman. She was very active with her church, St. Mary's in Chelmsford, and was part of the Youth Ministry during Middle and High School. Her favorite activity was volunteering every summer with The Vacation Bible Fest, working her way from helper to teacher. Both children and adults loved being with Meghan. Her infectious smile and loving hugs were her trademark for all of her life!

Meghan was a graduate of Chelmsford High School, Class of 2005. She was a member of the National Honor Society, the gymnastics team, where she was Tri-Captain in her senior year, and a Majorette with the Marching Band. She loved the Friday night football games, and was thrilled when she got to twirl a fire baton in her senior year. The gymnastics team fostered her funny side, where she always enjoyed the camaraderie of her teammates.

Meghan attended Rivier College in Nashua, NH, where she started as an Elementary Education major. Her love of children fueled her desire to become a teacher. Meghan was a Dean's list student and a Cheerleader her freshman year.

Meghan was diagnosed with Juvenile Huntington's Disease during her sophomore year in March of 2007. The diagnosis changed Meghan's future career plans, and she graduated from Rivier College with an Associate's Degree in Liberal Arts in 2008. For Meghan and her family and friends, this feat was like getting her PhD!

Knowing that she could not be gainfully employed, Meghan began two volunteer jobs. Meghan volunteered for two years with Horizons for Homeless Children, where she played with children in a homeless shelter in Lawrence. In the fall of 2009, she began volunteering at The Lowell Health Care Center. Meghan volunteered there right up to the summer of 2011, when she became a resident. Meghan resided at LHCC from 2011 until her death. Even as a resident, Meghan was "The Mayoress" of the facility, and her love of the staff was matched only by their love and care for her. Once again, her big smiles and warm hugs were looked forward to by all.
In 2010, Meghan found the love of her life, in her cherished boyfriend Greg Cormier, of Westford, formerly of Chelmsford, MA. Greg and his mother, Mary, have been an integral part of Meghan's life for the past four years. Meghan and Greg had their own very unique relationship, even with the challenges that Meghan faced with her Huntington's Disease.

Meghan's courageous 10 year battle with Juvenile Huntington's Disease took many forms. Meghan was an ardent and nationally known HD Educator and Advocate. She traveled all over the country educating researchers, health care professionals, students, politicians, civic and lay people about HD. Several documentaries and magazine and newspaper articles have featured Meghan. She was a popular and active member of the National Youth Alliance of the Huntington's Disease Society of America. In 2009, she was awarded The HDSA Community Awareness Award for her determination in educating the public about HD by courageously sharing her story. In 2010, she received The HDSA award for Person of the Year with Juvenile HD. She will be especially missed by all those in her beloved HD Community.

Meghan enjoyed her time with her 17 year-old step-nephew, Kyle. She was just 10 years old when Kyle was born and she loved taking care of him like the little brother that she never had.

Meghan's proudest and most exciting title, was being Auntie Meghan to her 5 year old niece, Teagan. Meghan loved every moment that she was able to spend with Teagan. They loved shopping, watching movies and getting manicures. Teagan and Meghan shared such a very special bond, that anyone watching, observed immediately. Meghan could never buy enough "diva outfits" and toys for Teagan. Teagan was Meghan's biggest champion and loved helping Auntie Meghan.

Meghan felt lucky to have two Dads. Meghan's father was the late Lowell Police Captain, John E. Sullivan. Meghan's stepfather, Lowell Police Captain Kevin E. Staveley, was affectionately called "Daddy Kevin," by Meghan. Meghan is survived by her parents, Cheryl (Colbert) Sullivan Staveley and Kevin Staveley, her sister and brother-in-law, Kaitlin (Sullivan) and John Freimuth, and her niece, Teagan Sharen Freimuth, of Bristol, CT. Meghan was the beloved girlfriend of Greg Cormier, of Westford, MA. Meghan was the step -sister of Brian Staveley of Lowell, and the step-aunt of Kyle Staveley of Exeter, NH. Meghan was the granddaughter of William and Claire Colbert of Chelmsford, and the niece of William Craig Colbert of Dover, NH, Michelle Colbert Desrosiers of Chelmsford, Jeanne Colbert Carter of Jacksonville, NC, and James Colbert of North Andover and their families. She is also the niece of David Sullivan of Tyngsboro, and the step niece of Kevin Richardson of Decatur, Illinois and Sean Richardson of Norwood and their families. Meghan was also the God daughter of Walter R. Poirier of Lowell. She will be deeply missed by all of her "Colbert" and "Sullivan" cousins.

Meghan's legacy will live on in everyone that she met. The lives that Meghan touched, in all walks of life, was immeasurable. Her kind and loving heart, her caring soul and personality, was the very essence of her being. Meghan was a magnet for everyone that she met. She was always thanking everyone and her trademark calling cards were her loving hugs and contagious smile. Meghan was truly a shining star. To enhance her "Celebration of Life," we invite all those attending, to wear something in her favorite colors…Pink and Purple.

SULLIVAN -- Meghan E. Sullivan, 26, of Chelmsford, passed away Monday morning, May 12, 2014 at Lowell Health Care Center, following a courageous battle with Huntington's Disease. Family and friends may call at the FAY McCABE FUNERAL HOME, 105 MOORE STREET, LOWELL, on THURSDAY from 2 until 4 P.M. and from 7 until 9 P.M. Meghan's Funeral Mass will take place on FRIDAY MORNING at 11 o'clock at ST. MARY'S CHURCH, 25 NORTH ROAD, CHELMSFORD. Her burial will follow in Pine Ridge Cemetery, Chelmsford.
As an expression of sympathy, in lieu of flowers, donations in Meghan's memory may be made to The Huntington's Disease Society of America, (HDSA), 6 Boston Road, Suite 203 A, Chelmsford, MA 01824. www.hdsa.org/donate

ARRANGEMENTS BY THE FAY McCABE FUNERAL DIRECTORS, 978-459-9222. www.faymccabe.com
Published in Lowell Sun from May 13 to May 14, 2014
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