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Alison Garrett Burfield, GMHS Class of ’97 Grad, Dies

AlisonBurfieldsmallFalls Church lost one of its native daughters this past week. Class of 1997 George Mason High School graduate Alison Garrett Burfield was in a fatal car wreck in Charlotte, North Carolina on the morning of Thursday, August 4. Both she and the baby girl she was expecting in two weeks died.

Falls Church lost one of its native daughters this past week. Class of 1997 George Mason High School graduate Alison Garrett Burfield was in a fatal car wreck in Charlotte, North Carolina on the morning of Thursday, August 4. Both she and the baby girl she was expecting in two weeks died.

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A dump truck hit Burfield’s vehicle head-on after crossing the yellow line, according to witnesses. The truck exploded on contact and Burfield’s car spun down the road. With the help of many people at the scene and a tireless team of doctors at the Carolina Medical Center, she managed to survive 10 hours, giving her family time to get to Charlotte so they could say goodbye. But she never regained consciousness from the accident.

Burfield was due to give birth to her second daughter in a couple weeks. The child, named Rosalind Gertrude, was born by emergency C-Section at the hospital. She survived the accident but according to docters she had gone too long without oxygen following the accident and had no brain activity. Sporting bright red curls, she died in her father’s arms on Friday morning.
Burfield’s three-year old daughter, Ivy, and husband Mike Madden were not in the accident.

Burfield graduated from George Mason High in 1997. While at Mason, she was on the varsity soccer team and was the showstopper in many of the musical productions, including as Adelaide in “Guys and Dolls” and Bonnie in “Anything Goes.”

After high school she began to go by her middle name, Garrett, but was still Alison to her family. She went on to earn a degree in marketing from the University of North Texas. She later used those skills to start her own business, Ivy’s Diaper Service.

In the last several years she developed a passion for being a mother and helping others to raise their children in a healthy and happy way. Through her work she encouraged others to forgo disposable diapers in favor of cloth in order to cut down on the amount of waste piling into landfills every year.

She believed in her slogan: Happy Butts, Healthy Planet. She proudly displayed a bumper sticker proclaiming herself a “Lactivist” and donated her own milk to help children whose mothers couldn’t breastfeed. Her latest goal was to help spread the Natural Birth Movement by advocating for changes in laws to allow more midwives and birthing centers to operate.

She is survived by her husband, Mike Madden, and her daughter, Ivy Virginia Madden. She is also survived by her parents, Anne Norloff and Rod Burfield; her siblings, Evan Burfield, Morgan Long, Fallon Norloff, and Hale Norloff; her step-parents, Chris Norloff and Diane Jemmott; her grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. James Burfield; and her in-laws, Mike and Debra Soules.

There will be a Celebration for Alison and Rosie at Cherry Hill Park in Falls Church on Saturday, August 13, at 2 p.m. at. Everyone is welcome, whether they would like share their thoughts and memories of Alison and Rosie, or simply like to be together with friends.

Alison would have preferred charity to flowers. Mike and Ivy are setting up the Garrett and Rosie Foundation, so that over time they can contribute to causes that Alison would have loved. As Ivy gets older, Mike would like her to be able to participate in giving in her mother and sister’s names. If anyone wishing to donate can do so at http://www.garrettandrosie.org.