Malette pens book about daughter

Published 10:35 pm Friday, October 29, 2010

The front cover of Joyce Malette’s book, “A New Beginning,” features a photo of her daughter, Naomi, who died in a car accident in 2004.

Joyce Malette’s personal experiences are the foundation for her book, “A New Beginning.”

The book details Malette’s grieving and healing process after the death of her daughter, Naomi, in a car accident. Now, the book itself has a new beginning, as it is being re-released with an added section that contains memories of Naomi written by her mother, father, sister and two college friends.

“Helping other people dealing with the same situation is also healing for myself as well,” Malette said. “After losing her, I had met so many people that had lost children that I didn’t even know.”

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Naomi, a Nansemond River High School graduate, was a junior at Virginia State University when she was returning home for Christmas break on Dec. 21, 2004. The family had just celebrated her older sister’s graduation from VSU three days earlier.

“It was that Tuesday morning when Naomi was coming home,” Malette said. “She didn’t make it home.”

As she grieved, Malette discovered that many people she knew — coworkers at QVC in Suffolk and clients she does home care for — had lost children in the past.

“I realized that they have lost kids too,” Malette said. “There was a bond there.”

One night, Malette was at work when she was struck with inspiration.

“I told one of my coworkers, ‘I’m going to right a book,’” Malette said.

The original book was eight chapters, a short book “written from the heart,” Malette said.

Five years after her death, however, Naomi’s mother, father, sister and two college friends wrote down their memories of her to be included in a reprint of the book. The new edition also includes a poem dedicated to her memory.

“Through this book, Naomi continues to touch lives,” Malette said. “I am more than happy to talk about my daughter because talking about her and keeping her memories alive is also healing for me as well.”

To get a copy of the book, mail P.O. Box 9486, Chesapeake, VA 23321 or call 483-6479.