NJ's Hero Military Mom - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

NJ's Hero Military Mom

Posted: Updated:
No matter how you may feel about the various military conflicts our country is currently involved in, no one can argue the respect all Americans feel towards our military troops and the families they leave behind while in deployment. In many cases, the burden falls on these families while their children are away, leaving parents like Siobhan-Fuller McConnell of Parsippany to feel a sense of duty when it comes to the well being of our troops.

Ms. McConnell is an amazing military mom with an incredible story of resilience in the face of tragedy.

McConnell comes from a long line of people who have sacrificed their lives serving our country. Last year, tragedy hit when she lost her 23 year-old son Army Sergeant Derek McConnell, who lost both his legs after getting hit by an IED while serving in Afghanistan in 2011. After making a miraculous recovery and learning to walk on prosthetic legs, Derek was found dead in his bed at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, MD in March of 2013. The cause of death was an accidental overdose of medication administered by a doctor who McConnell says was not on Derek’s primary care team and wasn’t familiar enough with his medical situation.

Although this instance could have been avoided, McConnell says she feels no resentment since Derek's passing and now has made it a priority for her to help other soldiers in need. When asked where McConnell gets all her strength she said that she’s been strong for as long as she could remember.

“I don’t know. My ex had severe PTSD from the Gulf War, so he couldn’t be there to care for the 5 kids, 4 of them boys. So I had to be, I couldn’t fall apart,” McConnell said.

This week Siobhan plans to visit the family of Aaron Alonso of Jefferson, New Jersey who is also suffering lost limbs. Aaron and Derek’s stories are very similar. Aaron also collided with an IED while serving in Afghanistan, but Siobhan says Aaron’s story doesn’t have to end the way Derek’s did. McConnell even offers advice for families who are watching over the recovery process of their sons or daughters.

“Document everything, write down everything, and question everything. Even if you think it’s minor. It helps in the recovery process. When I first got to Walter Reed, I was lost. One of the military wives reached out to me and told me take a picture of him every day, because as he recovers he will want to see that, but it will be important for the family too,” McConnell said.

McConnell’s journey is far from over however. She has two teenage sons, ages 17 and 18, who also plan to join the military. She says that it's great to know her family is dedicated to military service and she remains an extremely proud military mom. One who is strong enough to always look out for not only her own children, but the children of all military families throughout this country.

Watch Chasing New Jersey weeknights at 10pm on My9 and don’t forget to like us on Facebook!
  • Chasing New JerseyMore>>

  • Fire Director Gets Off With $206 Fine For Hitting 3 Kids With Car

    Fire Director Gets Off With $206 Fine For Hitting 3 Kids With Car

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 11:53 AM EDT2014-08-20 15:53:43 GMT
    New Brunswick Fire Director Robert Rawls pleaded guilty yesterday to reckless driving after running over and injuring three under-age kids back in May. One kid broke her leg, another suffered a fractured hip and the third walked away with minor injuries. The fire director walked away with a minor fine of just $206. Jocelyn Pelaez was the victim who broke her leg and had to get screws and tubes put in in order to walk again. 
    New Brunswick Fire Director Robert Rawls pleaded guilty yesterday to reckless driving after running over and injuring three under-age kids back in May. One kid broke her leg, another suffered a fractured hip and the third walked away with minor injuries. The fire director walked away with a minor fine of just $206. Jocelyn Pelaez was the victim who broke her leg and had to get screws and tubes put in in order to walk again. 
  • Washington Redskins’ Name-Change Debate Hits Home

    Washington Redskins’ Name-Change Debate Hits Home

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 10:55 AM EDT2014-08-20 14:55:32 GMT
    The debate over whether or not to change the NFL Washington Redskins' name rages on. Some believe its offensive and politically incorrect to refer to Native Americans as “redskins”. Well, now this controversy has become local news in New Jersey and New York after legendary New York Giants quarterback and current announcer Phil Simms said he's going to try to avoid offending people during broadcasts this year and will not use the Redskins name while calling games.
    The debate over whether or not to change the NFL Washington Redskins' name rages on. Some believe its offensive and politically incorrect to refer to Native Americans as “redskins”. Well, now this controversy has become local news in New Jersey and New York after legendary New York Giants quarterback and current announcer Phil Simms said he's going to try to avoid offending people during broadcasts this year and will not use the Redskins name while calling games.
  • NJ Bodybuilding Championships Draw Firm & Fit Physiques

    NJ Bodybuilding Championships Draw Firm & Fit Physiques

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 10:49 AM EDT2014-08-20 14:49:25 GMT
    Michael Freeman won the first bodybuilding contest he ever entered on Saturday at the state championships at Kean University in Union, New Jersey. The win brought him to his knees and he says he's paid the price for this victory. “I definitely sacrificed a lot this year. This is probably the year I've been most focused in my life. And the reason is because I believe in myself,” he said. The championships brought scores of men and women out to the competition.
    Michael Freeman won the first bodybuilding contest he ever entered on Saturday at the state championships at Kean University in Union, New Jersey. The win brought him to his knees and he says he's paid the price for this victory. “I definitely sacrificed a lot this year. This is probably the year I've been most focused in my life. And the reason is because I believe in myself,” he said. The championships brought scores of men and women out to the competition.
Powered by WorldNow

KDFW FOX 4
400 N. Griffin Street
Dallas, Texas 75202

Main Station Directory:
(214) 720-4444
News Fax:
(214) 720-3263 or (214) 720-3333

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices