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Vicki Gunvalson Honors Her Mother In Heartfelt Tribute

I am so lucky to combine blogging with my guilty pleasure of watching reality TV. I read all the comments and respond to most. Feel free to reach out to me. If you like fiction, I have two published novels: Three Days in Purgatory and A Reason to Run.


During last night’s episode of “The Real Housewives of Orange County,” we had a front row seat when real life struck reality star, Vicki Gunvalson, like a lightening bolt. If you’ve ever received a phone call like this, you know how unprepared and unsettling bad news of this magnitude can be. In her Bravo blog, she writes a touching tribute to her “amazing” and “beautiful” mother, Joanne Closset Steinmetz

“My mother died on February 4, 2015 for unknown causes. We elected not to do an autopsy, and the coroner said it was either a massive heart attack or an aneurysm. She was found by my brother around 8PM at night, laying on top of her covers on her bed. If it’s ‘your time to go’, I can only say what a beautiful way to die. She was at peace with her golden retriever dog Maggie lying next to her. Billy said it looked like she was sleeping when he found her. We are all still in shock and we miss her so much.” 

Vicki shares that she had the intuition to go visit her mother for what turned out to be her last birthday.

“You know, life is interesting sometimes. Sometimes you get an intuition in your gut that you just can’t explain. My mother turned 83 on December 5 and I had decided to surprise her by coming ‘home’ to Chicago and organizing a family dinner at one of her favorite restaurants.” Vicki added that her mother “kept asking me why I threw this party for her. She asked me several times ‘is this my last birthday?’ I said no, it was just that I wanted to see her and thought celebrating her birthday was a great way to do that.”

We are so glad that Vicki had that angel on her shoulder directing her to visit her mother. Vicki explains how “surreal” the loss of a parent can be.

“Little did I know when I said goodbye to her a few days later, that would be the last time I saw her until the wake and funeral. It is a surreal place to be and I know some of you have already experienced losing your parent or parents. It’s an empty feeling, a lonely feeling, and one that I almost can’t even put to words.”

Watching this episode was like “reliving a nightmare” for Vicki. She expressed gratitude for the kind words and comfort she received from Heather, Shannon, Tamra, and of course, boyfriend, Brooks.

“Brooks had gotten a call from my brother Billy and knew that I was at bunco at Shannon’s. He knew that I was going to be a mess, so one of his friends drove him to Shannon’s so he could ride home with me. Having Brooks there for me within a half hour of getting this horrible news was so nice. It’s times like this you really know who you can count on and I am thankful he was there for me.”

In closing, Vicki talks about how she is today and shares what she’s learned from the passing of her mother.

“It’s been 5 months since my mom died and there isn’t a day that goes by where I don’t want to pick up the phone to ask her a question or tell her I love her. I miss her so much, but know one day I will be with her in Heaven and at peace. I want to stress the importance of not putting off talking to or spending time with the ones you love. You never know when they will be taken from you. Thank you everyone who has reached out to me, it means more to me than you will ever know.” 


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