Janet McDonald   

PS. 287


Harlem Prep




Paris University





Great Auntee

International Lawyer





English Lanuage

Spanish Language

French Language

World Traveler


Posted by Thomas Wilson on April 12, 2022
I will listen to the THIS AMERICAN LIFE segment again, for you.
Posted by Mac Sea on April 11, 2022
Ma Soeur, tu es toujours dans mon coeur.
Posted by Laureen Sabella on April 11, 2022
15 years ago? Thank you for this site. Gone too soon is so true. 
Posted by Mac Sea on August 13, 2021
August 2021. Time flies and “defy defeat” (deep fry de feet) is now an anthem that once was shared between us and remains as a defiant challenge to the living. Live on Janet. I say your name. Nmrk❤️
Posted by joyce mcdonald on August 10, 2021
anet I love you you were the most wonderful fun loving spirit God loaned us. We give God the praise fir you. You left a great leagacy. We will never be the same you got you wish. Mother and daddy 
Posted by Laureen Sabella on August 10, 2021
Sincere condolences to family, friends, colleagues, fans. No matter how much time passes we’re still saying, “Janet, come back. One more book. One more interview. One more smile.”
Posted by Tasha Thomas on August 10, 2021
Hey Aunti. Heavenly birthday today
This is your Checker girl Tasha. I miss you so much.
I was going through pics of you in gramma room. Thinking about you both.  But I know you and gramma flo and grandad all together now watching over us.

See you again one day. I love you dearly, always,

Taheesha, aka Taheena. Lol
Posted by Thomas Wilson on August 10, 2021
Rest in Peace, Ms. McDonald. I will listen to your story from THIS AMERICAN LIFE again this week.
Posted by Deb Jackson on April 19, 2021
Oh my sister. Janet I miss you so much. Seems like yesterday you were here maling us crack up. I love you. Your Checkers girls are all grown up now all in their 40's. You"d be so proud. Thank you for being a great example for them.

I met a childhood friend of yours, and now we are best of friends. I learned even more about your early childhood years.

Well Sis, until we meet again!!!
Posted by Laureen Sabella on April 11, 2021
Forever Missed
Posted by Tasha Thomas on April 11, 2021
To my aunt Janet McDonald, from Checker girl to Checker girl!!!! We are all blessed and taking it one day at a time. Your 4 lil girls are awesome women and we are honored to share so many great memories of all of us together- that you created. You had a great hand in helping to raise us and we are better women because of it. We can’t ever think about you without a smile and a laugh coming through. That love and laughter come hand in hand, the McDonald way for sure!! Love you so much. Miss you forever and will one day see you again.
Posted by Thomas Wilson on April 11, 2021
Gone, but never forgotten. I am going to listen to your segment from "Americans in Paris" on THIS AMERICAN LIFE today.
Posted by Tasha Thomas on December 9, 2020
Missing you soooooo much aunti.
Checker Girl!
Posted by Ms Robbie Farmer on December 9, 2020
Like may others I just listened to your story on This American Life. I was aghast to find you had passed. You accomplished so much in your short life. If only words can express how sad your loss makes me.
Robbie Farmer 
Posted by Someone R. on November 27, 2020
I just listened to your story on This American Life. It was wonderful.

The world misses you.
Posted by makeeba page on August 11, 2020
Hey auntie it’s keeba I’m a day late but I remembered you yesterday and everyday I love and miss you so much Happy Heavenly Birthday please keep watching over me and the family give grandma a kiss for me, I know she made your favorite apple pie lol as for me I’m hanging in their just dealing with a lot of stuff but god is good love till we meet again.❤️
Posted by Laureen Sabella on August 11, 2020
Gone too soon.
Posted by Sheila Cox on August 10, 2020
My friend you are missed each day ! We celebrate your life always! Resting Well!
Posted by joyce mcdonald on April 12, 2020
I will always bring your story to the world, I miss you so much LOL you got mother and daddy to your self, you did amazing with Kevin and thank you. You are a inspiration to all who hear your story. I pray and love my family I wish it was like it was when you were alive, I feel like a only child trying to fit. You would be so proud of your checker girls S.I. P
Posted by Tasha Thomas on April 12, 2020
missing you, never forgetting you auntie! CheckerGirls still here holding us down. We love you always and forever. #keebatashtoystar
Posted by Laureen Sabella on April 11, 2020
Can't believe she was only in her early 50s. Life is crazy and not fair. 
Posted by makeeba page on April 11, 2020
Auntie I miss you so much, it’s keeba checker girl number 1 lol, I so miss your silly spirit, we had a lot of good times, wow 13 yrs I love you and honor you, My last child was named after you Kayla Ann-Janet Page and guess what she wants to be, a lawyer love you and will always have you in my heart tell grandma I love and miss her too my BFF, I know she making you apple pies up in heaven. ❤️
Posted by Deb Jackson on April 11, 2020
Janet I miss you so much. I cant believe its been 13 years. Many of those years I just tricked myself in believing you were still in Paris and just wasn't able to come home. The world has changed so much. Mother, my BFF Val and many others! I guess its time for me to except that its time... I will always always love you. Forever Missed but Never Forgotten!!!
Posted by Thomas Wilson on September 5, 2019
I just heard a podcast from NPR's THIS AMERICAN LIFE titled "Americans in Paris" and was saddened by Ira Glass' addendum, that you had passed away years earlier. It was so heartbreaking. But I immediately got PROJECT GIRL and read it. I am your de-facto brother, from a Queens project complex.  The only difference is that I attended school elsewhere and stayed stateside. But the writing, the activism, the challenges, the wariness of being a Black Intellectual...I hear you and I understand. Your music lives on, though you are gone!
Posted by Ruth Strauss on July 21, 2019
I just heard an interview, a riotous, raucous, fun, sassy, smart interview of you on This American Life--I loved it, until Ira announced that you had passed away at age 53--what a tragedy, and yet what a life well lived, well defined, well thought-out and well analyzed. I am blessed to have known you through this one short interview, but you have made an indelible impression upon me. God bless you for all you did, all you went through, and to your family whom I'm sure holds you dear and misses you so.
Posted by makeeba page on April 12, 2019
I can’t believe yesterday made 12 years you been gone I miss you so much I love you check girl number 1 ❤️❤️❤️❤️
Posted by Laureen Sabella on April 11, 2019
Forever Missed is a beautiful website and much appreciated. It makes us feel as if Janet keeps reminding us each year that she is not gone. Her books, her life story--everything about her spirit stays with us. The tears that flow must be like a rain that she sends down to help cleanse our souls. Thank you to her loving family for this internet memorial site.
Posted by joyce mcdonald on April 11, 2019
Posted by Angel King on April 11, 2019
Happy heavenly birthday beautiful soul ❤️
Posted by joyce mcdonald on April 11, 2019
Janet I know your heavenly time is awesome !!! Daddy and Mother lol you have they’ll to your self .. I love you so much , I wish I would have had more time with you .Such great memories . I will always celebrate you life. You left a great leagacy for those who think the can’t . I can allwats here your cagaling laughter !♥️♥️♥️ 12 years. I’m doing my best to help your Kevin . He loves you so much . S.I.P my middle sister .
Posted by makeeba page on August 10, 2018
I love and miss you so much I can’t believe you been gone for 11 years your #1 fan checkergirl #1 and my youngest who was named aft you is 11 yrs old Kayla Ann-Janet Page she read all your books you would be proud
Posted by Laureen Sabella on August 10, 2018
Never forgotten...just took a photo of her books but not able to attach it...
Posted by Deb Jackson on August 10, 2018
What fond and fun memories I have. Janet my heart longs for you and rejoices at the same time. Yet another angel is with you; our Mother!! I will miss you forever. Until we meet again my dear Sister.
Posted by Laureen Sabella on April 12, 2016
9 years have passed. I have a shelf of Janet's books. So I guess I have to read again. Her books for young people can also be for old people like me.
Posted by Jane Lang on August 10, 2015
It's been over a year since I first read Janet's autobiography. I'm a total stranger to her family and her life, but I've never had something impact me so powerfully. I think of her story and her experiences often and tell other people about her. I'm high school teacher, and I tell my teenagers about her too. I want to bring her back so she can be with her family and friends. Just think what more she could have brought us as she got older!
Posted by makeeba page on April 12, 2015
I miss you so much auntie, we all need you so much I know your watching over all of us may you rest in peace love you always and will never forget you, I remember my first time too the movies and you took me Tasha Natoya and Starlett to see Annie I will never forget it, you would love the remake
Posted by Laureen Sabella on April 11, 2015
I have to go roller skating for Janet!
Posted by joyce mcdonald on April 10, 2015
Janet we miss you so much. I can't believe  April 11 th makes 7 years
Posted by Laureen Sabella on October 9, 2014
I still after more than 7 years have reminders of my email friend. I have reminders that she is not gone. My old computer crashed and my written communication is gone, but I still feel that Janet is too strong a presence to really be gone. Wish we could still see, hear, and read new books of hers, though. She is extraordinary and I can't believe I was so fortunate to be her friend.
Posted by Sheila Cox on August 10, 2014
Janet your spirit lives on ! You have and will influence ,and encourage many individuals that have come in the world . I find myself sometimes reading the postcards and letters you sent me and Mom ! Your LOVE lives in those who knew you.
Posted by April Sneed on August 10, 2014
May Janet forever rest in peace.
Posted by JAMES SANFORD on August 10, 2014
Janet and I were more like brother and sister then just friends. Long conversations sitting on the bench behind 191. I was completely devastated upon hearing of her passing. She will always be in my heart. She will be missed dearly. RIP my sister, Love You ALWAYS
Posted by Jane Lang on August 5, 2014
I find myself unsure of how to start. In April 2014 I heard a previously recorded interview with Janet on NPR. Her perspective on living in Paris was interesting, and her honesty, intelligence, and humor drew me in. It wasn't til the end of the program that they said she had died in 2007. I was shocked. Here was someone I'd heard only briefly, and wanted more of, silenced now except through the legacy of her books.  I bought and read Project Girl. Now finished, I have such mixed feelings-compassion, anger, sadness, gratitude... with no closure. Her brutal honesty both touched and disturbed me, which is what good writers do! I'm a high school teacher, and many of my students struggle between the same worlds of their upbringing and their ambition. I will share Janet's words with them. Those of you who knew her were given a gift, through all the good, the bad, and the ugly. I send my belated sympathy. I wish I could thank this total stranger who has deeply touched my life and given me much to think about.
Posted by Ellen Cates on August 12, 2013
Our many chats while sitting on the housing benches when we were children inspired me to dream, believe and achieve -
Your dreams came to fruition and built honorable memories. I thank God for your spirit which has been indelibly placed in all of us who came from those humble beginnings. We honor you in dreaming & achieving! Love always...
Posted by Deb Jackson on August 10, 2013
Never Forgotten. You are always with us!
Posted by makeeba page on April 11, 2013
Oh and I am the first and oldest checker girl Taheesha, Natoya,Starlett lol I love you and miss you so much auntie Janet, I now you and Obama would have been great friends. RIP
Posted by makeeba page on April 11, 2013
I remember the morning my mom called and said aunt Janet had passed my baby girl was one month her name is Kayla Janet-Ann Page. My heart is still heavy as the tears roll down my face I remember all the laughs and jokes we had had together . We always was and still is a strong family, I sure miss those days when she came to town that was the only time we had my grandma flo's apple pie lol
Posted by Freedia Jeans on September 12, 2012
Janet, you are sorely missed (Like Crazy I still miss you). What a privilege it was to know you…though for a short spell you were allowed to grace my life. I thank God for the special talks we had. I still recall them, and I smile with a bit of rain mixed in between those memories. Rest on and I pray God has you safely in his His arms.
Posted by Joyce McDonald on August 17, 2009
I light on behalf of your great nieces and nephews Your ligth continue to shine in our memories.
Posted by Joyce McDonald on August 10, 2009
I light this candle in memory of my beautiful daughter Janet McDonald.I will always love you. You will always live in my heart forever.Love Your Mother Florence McDonald
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Leave a Tribute

Recent Tributes
Posted by Thomas Wilson on April 12, 2022
I will listen to the THIS AMERICAN LIFE segment again, for you.
Posted by Mac Sea on April 11, 2022
Ma Soeur, tu es toujours dans mon coeur.
Posted by Laureen Sabella on April 11, 2022
15 years ago? Thank you for this site. Gone too soon is so true. 
Recent stories
Shared by joyce mcdonald on April 11, 2019

Janet was brilliant even as a child. It was us 4 older children that had to wash dishes for a week. That was great , Daddy and mother let us know we would have a month off.             How ever Janet thought of way where she would never have to be a part of choirs. She asked me to do her dishes I laughed and said no.               My brother Laverte who at that time we didn’t get along.  She called me and whispered you wanna get Laverte back?   Forgetting about the dishes , I said yes!!! She said here’s an egg he’s sitting under the window , throw it on his head. I said no ima get in trouble . She said no one will know but me. So I threw it.  She laughed and putting up one eyebrow said “ I’m telling mother” no I cried . She said will you do my week of washing dishes ? I said YES. . 

Goes by so fast

Shared by Laureen Sabella on August 10, 2017

She reached out to so many.  I have to thank this site for the reminder emails.  The years and days pass by quickly.  She was gone too soon.  But somehow is not gone. I don't really believe that.  I just think we don't understand.  

Janet, The Seattle Years

Shared by Paula Boggs on July 14, 2017

I can't exactly recall how or where I first met Janet but it was definitely at a Loren Miller Bar Association Meeting, an organization of African-American lawyers mostly based in Seattle. It was the early/mid 1990s  and Janet was an associate at the large and prestigious law firm, Davis Wright Tremaine.  Janet was different, sophisticated yet earthy and sporting a 'fro when most of us black chicks were doing something else. To put it politely, Janet was not a "neat freak" -- clutter absorbed her tiny apartment back in the day.  She loved Chris Isaak and my abiding memory of her home is inextricable from his haunting songs. We hung out together a lot and then she was gone. Poof.  Somehow we reconnected briefly via email after I moved to Austin and she to Paris.  For work I traveled to Paris in the late 1990s.  We almost saw each other but didn't.  Again we lost track.  Every once in a while I'd hear a Chris Isaak song and ask myself, I wonder what ever happened to Janet McDonald?" In early 2008 I googled her, only to learn of her passing a mere few months before.  I had no idea of her life and success as a writer.  I'm so happy she found it and it found her. Janet's star will always burn bright and I'm so grateful I got to touch it.