Cathy (left) and Maddie Price at their Greenway Market.
Maddie Price stood on a crate to wait on customers when she was 6.
Cathy Price thought her husband of 32 years “had just fallen down. When I turned him over, I knew.” A rare heart condition took him two years ago and left her with four children and a convenience store. It was sudden, unexpected and heartbreaking, but there was no time for grief.
The store was solid, stable and the entire family had taken part in running it over the years, so there was no problem with transition. Likewise, for the kids: “There was no time to grieve,” says Cathy. “I had to be at work at 5:30 [a.m.] and the kids had to get themselves ready for school. The strong foundation my husband and I laid with them made them independent.”
They were all good students, involved in extracurriculars and took part in the community. Maddie “stood on a milk crate [at the family’s Greenway Market in Cloverdale] when she was 6 or 7 and waited on customers and made hotdogs,” says Cathy.
“It was a defining moment for me,” says Maddie, who finished Salem High this year with a 4.21 GPA and was president of her class for three years and of the student body during her senior year. She was all-district and captain of a state championship basketball team, a member of the Superintendent’s Advisory Committee and a delegate at Girls State. She was consistently there, as well, for those who have little, volunteering her time and energy. Her resume is long and involved, and she’s just a teenager.
“The moment I lost [her father], I realized I couldn’t get him back. My mother and dad instilled values in us that helped us overcome” his death, she says. “I learned to make the most of opportunities.” She heads off to Virginia Tech this fall to study business, but not to play basketball, as her father might have wanted. “If he was still alive, I probably would,” she says. “But I think I’ll do what is important to me now.”