How heartbreaking! After the tragic suicide of 19-year-old Madison Holleran, her father, James, gave an emotional speech at her funeral on Jan. 21, saying, ‘Today, we all have to be strong for Madison.’
Just four short days after Madison Holleran jumped to her death in Center City, Philadelphia on Jan. 17, her father, James Holleran, was a pillar of strength at her funeral. As more than 600 friends and family members gathered to say their final goodbyes to the University of Pennsylvania track star, James said some heart-wrenching words about his daughter, and urged people who are in pain to “seek therapy.”
Madison Holleran’s Father At Funeral — Her Dad’s Emotional Speech After Death
Madison was a popular student and track star who always knew how to rally her fellow runners at UPenn. During the mass at her funeral, her father, James, remembered the words the “iconic” young woman often used to encourage her teammates: “Now is a time to be strong.”
“Today, we all have to be strong for Madison,” James added. How heartbreaking!
James also urged everyone to learn from Madison’s tragic death, the UK’s Daily Mail reports. “Please seek therapy if you need it. This is not a weakness, but a struggle,” he said.
Madison’s older sister, Ashley, also spoke at the service, fighting back tears as she called her sister “the best snuggle buddy I could have asked for.”
“Even though she was my little sister I looked up to her as a mentor,” Ashley said. “I only wish I could have flown up to her at UPenn and helped her.”
Madison Holleran’s Father Speaks Out In New Interview
“We knew she needed help. She knew she needed help,” he told the paper. “She had lost confidence in academics and she also lost confidence in her track abilities.”
James also revealed that his daughter had begun seeing a therapist in December after she shared that she was having suicidal thoughts.
On Jan. 17, the day Madison committed suicide, James said he was “worried” so he texted his daughter to tell her he wanted her to see a therapist who could help by prescribing anti-depressants. Madison agreed — but it was already too late.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to Madison’s family and friends during this difficult time. If you or someone you know is suffering from suicidal thoughts, please call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) who can connect you with a skilled and trained counselor in your area.
— Tierney McAfee