Here are some interesting facts and short stories about JonBenet Ramsey:
1. For a Michigan bike contest in 1995, JonBenét's bike had an Olympic theme, with five rings made out of colored aluminum foil. She won the contest!
2. When Patsy went into labor with JonBenét, JonBenét was born so fast that she was almost born in the car. When Aunt Polly, Patsy’s sister and JonBenét's aunt, got to the hospital, she met John at the emergency admissions desk. She was excited and thought that John said Patsy was on the fourth floor. Polly took the elevator and looked all over the fourth floor. When she got back downstairs, she found out John said the fourth room, not the fourth floor! Polly noticed John had worn a pink knit golf shirt and pink shorts in honor of his newest, baby girl!!
3. When Patsy was ill, a friend of Patsy’s took her daughter and JonBenét, both three years old at the time, to see Disney’s Snow White. Although it was a children’s movie, there were parts in it, like the wicked witch, which scared the two girls a little. So they both sat in the caretaker’s lap through out the movie.
4. Melinda, JonBenet’s step-sister and the eldest of John’s two daughters from his first marriage, and JonBenét liked to paint together or play dress up. Each year they colored Easter Eggs and they had a Christmas tradition of baking cookies together.
5. One cold winter day, Melinda and JonBenét went out to ‘build a snowman.’ Melinda soon realized that it would be almost impossible to do with the little bit of snow that was left. But JonBenét was determined. “I know we can do it!” And so, of course, they worked and worked until they had a two-foot high snowman. Melinda would do anything to make JonBenét happy.
6. One of Melinda’s strongest memories is how JonBenét always ran to greet her. Her pigtails were flying, her arms were outstretched and she screamed, “Be-winda, Be-winda!” That is the memory that Melinda cherished the most.
7. John Andrew, her step brother and John's only son from his first marriage, and JonBenét always made lemonade together.
8. In November 1996, JonBenét had gone to New York with her Mom and sisters, Pam and Polly. JonBenét had seen a couple of Broadway shows, ice skated at Rockefeller Center and ate a $125 lobster dinner. But the highlight for JonBenét was when she saw the the Christmas Spectacular and the Rockettes at Radio city Music hall. She told Patsy she wanted to be a Rockette when she grew up.
9. During the summer reunion off 1995, JonBenét and her cousin did a little song and dance number for the Family talent show. JonBenét had also learned the Macarena and loved to do that dance—over and over again. Just ask them—or they would show you anyway!
10. In the summer of 1996, they celebrated the annual family reunion in Michigan. The reunion was held that year in August. At that time, they celebrated JonBenét’s 6th Birthday. That year, the main thing JonBenét wanted was an American Girl doll named Samantha. When she opened the box, with Burke’s help, she said, “Oh, my doll!” and hugged and hugged her new baby. (See photo in the Family pictures album in our gallery.)
11. JonBenét on her sixth Birthday was an ordinary and wonderful little girl dressed in blue jean shorts, sandals, a T-shirt and a ponytail with her favorite doll, her puppy Jacques, and her loving family.
12. The Samantha doll that JonBenét had received for her 6th birthday, came with a book. That night, as she was getting ready for bed, her Aunt Debbie read the book the book to her. When they came to the part about the Samantha giving up her favorite doll to a sick child, Aunt Debbie cried, and JonBenét cried. JonBenét was a bright, loving and very giving child. She would understand a story like this, even at her age, and she seemed to want everyone to be happy. It’s hard to explain how extraordinary she was; you just had to know her.
13. One night, JonBenét wanted to have a pajama party—so Grandma, Aunts, Mom and Cousins all gathered in the living room for the night. One of the games they played was something that JonBenét thought up. Each grown up pretended to be a different animal in a pet shop. Aunt Debbie was a parrot; Grandma was a dog; there was an alligator, a kitty cat and a rabbit. They giggled and laughed and they told funny stories in their animal voices and they made their animal sounds.
14. JonBenét was special. She enjoyed her friends and toys, but she also enjoyed being with her mom and family. She never seemed to whine or want all of the attention like children of that age might do. She listened and even joined the conversation and seemed content just to be with the big girls and the adult women loved having her with them.
15. JonBenet’s Aunt Debbie and her mom, Patsy have always looked remarkably alike. JonBenét once wrapped her arms around her Aunt Debbie’s leg and started talking to her and then realized, “You’re not my Mommy.” Debbie laughed. She always felt a special bond with JonBenét because she didn’t have a daughter. She called her “JonniB” as did most of the family. JonBenét called her ‘Aunt Debbie’ and Pam and Polly jokingly reminded her, “No, Debbie is your cousin, not your aunt.” But JonBenét told them what made logical sense to her, “Aunts are big and cousins are little, so Debbie must be my Aunt!”
16. Linda, a friend of the Ramsey’s walked in the living room one day and saw JonBenét on Patsy’s lap. They were talking about a contest that JonBenét had been in and Linda asked her, “How did you do?” she didn’t answer her but looked shyly at her mom. Finally, when Patsy encouraged her to answer, she said simply, “I won,” and then hopped down and went outside to play. Later, Linda learned that JonBenét had won the Little Miss Colorado Pageant.
17. St. John's was indeed JonBenét’s church. She had been a spiritual person and understood God. Once she asked her mother, “How much do you love me, Mommy?” And Patsy answered, “I love you and Burke and Daddy more than anything else in this world.” JonBenét shook her head and said, “You’re not supposed to love anyone more than Jesus.” Patsy remembered another time when they were sitting in a pew of this church listening to a beautiful hymn, and when it was over, JonBenét announced in a very loud voice, “That was a nice song,” and the whole church chuckled.
18. For JonBenét's funeral, Pam, her sister came in with three of JonBenét's dresses for Patsy to choose what JonBenét was going to wear. Patsy reached for the chiffon one because it looked so angelic. Patsy hugged the dress before she gave it back to Pam.
19. In the parents bedroom, they had a curio cabinet of keepsakes from over the years. This included JonBenet’s first shoes, her Christening gown, JonBenet’s baby locks.
20. When Pam went to the Ramsey home in Boulder to pick up some things that the Ramseys wanted, she walked into JonBenét’s room and was drawn to a seemingly significant gold medallion that JonBenét had won in the recent All-Stars Christmas Pageant, her last competition. The round medallion had been placed around her neck as the overall winner of the talent competition. Over the past two years, JonBenét had won a number of metals and trophies in her little pageants. She was always so proud to show them to her Daddy. John had told her many times that the most important part of these contests was not beauty or costumes, but talent. “Your talent is the most important thing,” John said. “And it doesn’t matter if you win or not, just that you do your best.” JonBenét would sing her heart out. Sometimes she might be slightly off key, but JonBenét always gave her best.
“Dad, I really worked hard on my talent this time,.” she would say to her Daddy.
When John sat down beside Patsy, JonBenét lit up like a Christmas tree. She took the little medallion from around her neck and placed it around John’s.
21. The gold medallion was the one item of JonBenet’s that John wanted for himself as a keepsake, because of the way JonBenét had given it to him. No one had known of the significance of that metal except JonBenét. When Pam gave John the medal, he was overwhelmed. He felt as if JonBenét had spoken to him through Pam’s bringing him of this metal. JonBenét reached across eternity and gave him this gift that touched his heart as nothing else in the world could. He placed the medallion around his neck and continually wears it everyday since. He knew from then on that JonBenét was all right.
22. During JonBenet’s funeral home viewing, JonBenét had been given some final gifts before she was buried.
JonBenet’s grandmother had a special gold bracelet that she had saved to give to JonBenét when she was older. She reached down and slipped it over JonBenet’s wrist.
Aunt Polly put a large gold cross in JonBenet’s hands. During the time Patsy had cancer, a pastor had given Patsy a cross. Later, Patsy found gold crosses similar to that of the one the pastor had given her. Patsy bought the crosses for her mother and sisters. Polly had worn the cross through some difficult times; JonBenét would wear it forever. Pam had brought JonBenet’s Little Miss Christmas tiara, which she had won during December’s pageant competition in Denver. Now Pam bent over and lovingly placed the crown on JonBenet’s head.
Then, it was John’s turn. He had recently purchased a beautiful silk scarf, and he tucked it around JonBenét as if surrounding her with a final blanket of love.
Suddenly, Fleet and Priscilla White rushed in. She and Fleet had found Sister Socks, a stuffed kitten that was so dear to JonBenét. Patsy had asked to have that stuffed kitten brought over by Pam, but it was the wrong one. Priscilla knew about that, and somehow she had gotten hold of the right Sister Socks, the one with the red ribbon around its neck. I tucked Sister Socks under JonBenet’s right arm.
“Don't you think you should keep Sister Socks?” Priscilla asked. “You'll need it more than JonBenét.” “No. Sister Socks belongs with her,” Patsy whispered.
23. Ever since that day, Patsy had tried and tried to find another gray-and-white kitten just like that one, because the story of Sister Socks was so special to them.
The story began the first summer we stayed in Charlevoix in 1993, when a gray-and -white stray cat turned up at their house. Her paws looked like they had white athletic socks on them, so the kids named her Sister Socks. They set out a bowl of milk in the mornings, and the forlorn cat became a family friend. Burke and JonBenét would look forward to the cat’s visit each day and play with her.
Then, Sister Socks disappeared for several days. The children were really disappointed, but they all assumed she’s found a new home. One morning, John was working in the garage when he saw Sister Socks gingerly walking toward him with a tiny kitten in her mouth. She laid the kitten down at his feet and stood back, as if to say, “Here’s my baby. Could you help me take care of it?”
John made a box, lined with a blanket, to put the little kitten in. Soon Sister Socks came back with another kitten—and another one. John is not particularly a cat person, but he and Sister Socks were now bonded. Patsy knew John would have taken her and her three kittens back to Boulder at the end of the summer, but she was afraid to ask him—and he wasn’t about to volunteer. Eventually, Sister Socks and her kittens moved in with their neighbors, the Witthoefts, for the winter. Sister Socks was a wonderful part of the Ramsey’s first summer in Charlevoix.
Months later, JonBenét and Patsy were shopping at the Pearl Street Mall when they looked into the window of the Printed Page Bookstore. Sitting there on the shelf was a stuffed cat.
“Mommy, that kitty looks like Sister Socks!” JonBenét cried out.
“Maybe a little,” Patsy replied. “But Sister Socks was gray, not brown like this cat. Wasn’t she? That one is the wrong color.”
“I know, but she had stripes like that cat. Please, Mommy!” JonBenét begged. “I want a Sister Socks cat. I bet they have the right color one somewhere in there.”
“Okay,” Patsy acquiesced. “I’ll check and see.”
Patsy could tell that the stuff animal was important to JonBenét. It was on the top of her list to Santa that year
Later, Patsy called the bookstore and asked if they could find a gray cat. Eventually they did, so her father arranged to pick up the stuffed animal, just in time for our Christmas party. The highlight of the evening was when Santa Claus pulled a gray-and-white Sister Socks out of his sack. JonBenét loved her kitty—and the real Sister Socks who still roams the narrow streets of Charlevoix.
24. JonBenét and her mother enjoyed singing a song from “Gypsy” especially the verses, “Wherever we go, whatever we do, we’re gonna go through it together.”
25. JonBenet’s participation in pageants was one of her many hobbies. She also loved in-line skating, arts and crafts and gymnastics. She took violin and piano lessons. She could hula hoop and stand on her head! Her next challenge was rock climbing. Patsy had already signed her up for rock climbing lessons at the East Boulder Recreation Center. She had taken JonBenét there one afternoon, and she immediately started climbing up the wall like a little spider. At the time she was murdered, JonBenét hadn’t lost any of her baby teeth, but one of her front teeth was loose, and she was looking forward to using her tooth fairy pillow. She loved to perform. She was a natural entertainer and had no fear of getting up in front of a crowd, unlike her Daddy. Anyone who has a daughter knows that little girls like to play dress up and enjoy putting on lipstick. That’s part of being a little girl. JonBenét just had an extra level of ham in her.
26. John and Patsy first discovered JonBenet’s penchant for performing when she was three years old and participated in her first dance recital, held at the Boulder High School theatre. Five little munchkins tap-danced as they sang “I Want to Hold Your Hand” by the Beatles. They were all so cute and knew the routine fairly well. But JonBenét just beamed. Patsy was sitting in the front row, and afterward several moms came up to her and said, “Where did JonBenét learn to do that?”
The truth is, she didn’t learn that gusto and infectious smile anywhere. It just came from within. Patsy knew how much JonBenét enjoyed performing.
At the pageant’s Fiftieth Anniversary Celebration and a reunion of former Miss West Virginias in June of 1993, held in West Virginia, Patsy and her sister, Pam, did a performance together and sang “A Gershwin Melody.” Little JonBenét, who was only three-and-a-half at the time, was in the audience that night and watch her mommy and aunt on stage. JonBenét loved every moment of the performance and instantly wanted to be part of the fun. The president of the Miss America Pageant, Mr. Albert Marks, said that he had met a little blonde angel in a pretty pink dress who looked to him like a future Miss America. He was talking about JonBenét.
27. JonBenét became star-struck. When everyone returned home to Colorado from the reunion in West Virginia, JonBenét began begging to be in a pageant. Patsy would hear JonBenét playing a new game called “Presenting” with her friends. As the announcer had introduced each girl in the Miss West Virginia Pageant, he had told about her hometown, her background, and her interests, and he would finish by saying, “Presenting Miss So-and-So.” Now, JonBenét wanted Patsy to play the emcee. JonBenét would stand beside the door to the living room and give mommy the ‘okay.’ Then Patsy would say, “Preeeeesenting, Miss JonBenét Ramsey.” And she would jump out into the doorway and she would walk out with a pom-pom on her head and high heels. “Presenting” became JonBenet’s favorite game.
28. In the summer of 1994, the Paughs held their family reunion in Charlevoix Michigan at the Ramsey’s summer home. The annual talent show was also a part of the reunion. Good, bad or indifferent—everyone had to perform on the makeshift stage on their back porch, overlooking Round Lake harbor. JonBenét and her cousin Jenny sang a duet, “I was raised on Country Sunshine.” They looked so cute in their Daisy Mae cutoffs and pigtails.
Then JonBenét went upstairs and changed into another outfit so she could sing another song for everyone. And then another one. Nobody wanted to squelch her enthusiasm, but soon it was long past bedtime. Of course, she persisted. “Wait,” she said, “I still have one other.” This time she came down in the pretty pink dress she’d worn to the Miss West Virginia celebration and sang “Somewhere over the Rainbow.”
That summer, her parents bought JonBenét a karaoke machine at the Charlevoix K-Mart. She could sing along with the prerecorded music forever. You could make yourself appear to be a stage-ready performer, and that was just what JonBenét loved.
28. In the summer of 1994 while in Charlevoix Michigan, Patsy noticed an ad in the Charlevoix newspaper promoting an upcoming Miss Charlevoix contest for girls of all ages. The two day event was to be held at the East Jordan High School over the Fourth of July weekend. The event sounded tailor made for JonBenét. The pageant had a patriotic theme since it was held over the Fourth. When Patsy and JonBenét arrived, they learned that there were only two other girls in JonBenet’s age group. Patsy remembers JonBenét marching around the stage while waving a little flag amidst twinkling red, white, and blue lights while the emcee sang “Proud to be an American.” JonBenét was proud to be part of the show with all the bigger girls. And Patsy was proud of her. JonBenét was just beaming. JonBenét won the title of Little Miss Charlevoix, and now she was all fired up to do it again.
29. In the spring of 1995, Patsy was asked to be on the cover of Women’s Magazine and give an interview about her struggle with cancer. During the shoot, Patsy and the hairdresser were talking about pageants and the hair stylist mentioned to Patsy that the Colorado All-Star Kids Pageant was coming up in the few weeks.
“Here’s the director’s name and telephone number if you’re interested,” the hairstylist said handing the paper to Patsy.
Patsy entered JonBenét at the last possible minute, and they were soon on their way to a contest. JonBenét was one excited little girl.
Patsy called her mother, Nedra, in Atlanta because she didn’t have any idea where to look for pageant dresses in Denver, and she didn’t have much time to find out. The event became a family project. Patsy’s youngest sister, Polly, had bought her wedding gown at a bridal shop in Marietta, which also had flower girl dresses and other dressy apparel for little girls. Polly knew they would find a party dress there. Nedra and Patsy’s other sister, Pam, were visiting Biloxi, Mississippi, and found a Mardi Gras costume shop. They brought back a white satin cape and color that could be made into a Ziegfeld Follies costume, reminiscent of the one Patsy had worn in the Miss West Virginia Pageant some twenty years earlier.
Finally the big day arrived. They were surprised to see JonBenet’s picture on the cover of the program of the days activities. Patsy had mailed a photograph to the pageant as part of JonBenet’s entry, but we never expected her to be featured on the program cover. Even though it was just a ten-page photo-copied and spiral bound pamphlet, you’d have thought the program was Vogue magazine, based on how excited they were!
The event was held in a small ballroom of Denver hotel where a stage had been erected in one end of the room. There about sixty or so folding chairs set up theatre style. At the back was a sound system, manned by an older grey-haired gentleman.
The competition was divided into four age groups—four to six, seven to ten, eleven to thirteen, and fourteen and older—and the girls competed in four different categories: talent, party dress, sportswear and costume.
JonBenét was the last one in the line-up because she was a late entry. There were four little girls in her age group. Patsy sat in a row near the front and watched the three girls ahead of her doing little turns and spins with the poise and polish that only comes with practice. What’s JonBenét going to do? Patsy worried. She's never done this before.
Patsy underestimated her. Apparently she watched the three preceding contestants, and once she was on stage she was able to mimic them so well, she looked as if she’d been doing this all her life.
In the sportswear competition JonBenét wore a little black jacket dress with a butterfly on it and a ruffled petticoat underneath.
For the party dress category she wore a blue chiffon dress with a white bodice and matching white anklets, which Aunt Polly had sent from Atlanta.
For the talent category, JonBenét wore her patriotic body suit with a white bodice, red sequined collar and a small blue ruffled outer skirt with white stars and red taffeta underneath in the back. The outfit was complete with white tap dance shoes, ruffled white anklets with a star on them and a white hat with blue material and stars on it. She had resurrected her little patriotic tap dance from the Charlevoix contest, and performed it with her typical gusto.
At the end of the pageant, while the judges were tallying the points and getting ready for the crowning event, the gentleman operating the sound system played the Macarena. Most of the moms and grandmas, and some of the grandpas and dads and little brothers, joined the girls dancing a laughing on the stage. Then he played “Y-M-C-A” and we all waved our hands to the music. Everyone was enjoying the event with their children as they looked forward to the presentation of the awards.
All the girls went home with a prize that day—most photogenic or best costume or biggest smile or prettiest eyes, as well as the prizes for placing in the four different categories. That day JonBenét won the award for cover girl. She also received a trophy for the first runner-up in her age group. JonBenét was proud of herself. She came running back to me with her “hardware.”
“That was fun Mom,” she said. “I want to do it again.” And away she ran with one of her newfound friends.
That day, Patsy also met Pamela Griffin and her daughter, Kristine. Kristine had been in pageants herself for many years and offered to help coach JonBenét and help choreography her modeling. Pam was a seamstress and did pageant costume. It would be later on that we find out that Pam Griffin did several of JonBenét's pageant costumes.
30. At times, JonBenét was so eager to practice that she created her own pageants at home. The Ramsey’s home had a little eating area, just off the kitchen. Often we would sit around after dinner with the Whites or other friends, lingering over coffee, and JonBenét and Daphne White would go to JonBenét’s bedroom and dress up in the costumes from her barrel top trunk. Then they would reappear in the hallway by the dining area, which became a makeshift stage.
They demanded the undivided attention of the adults. They would not allow any talking. And we had to announce them, of course. “Now ladies and gentlemen, preeeesenting for your after-dinner entertainment JonBenét Ramsey and Daphne White.” Their favorite duet was “Wouldn’t it be Loverly” from My Fair Lady.
If the adults started talking while they were performing, they would stop, put their hands on their hips, and give us a disgusted look. Then they would begin all over again.
31. The following year in 1996, JonBenét participated in a few more pageants, and won Miss Sunburst Colorado in one of them, which enabled her to go to national three-day Sunburst Pageant in Atlanta during the summer of 1996. JonBenét knew that would be extra fun because Grandma and Grandpa and Aunt Pam and Aunt Polly would all be there.
Sunburst was a big national event. There were lots of categories in which to model—sportswear, fancy dress, party dress, active wear, western wear, costume, and beach wear—and about sixty girls in each age group from all over the country. Most of the pageant footage that have appeared on television have come from this pageant because there were so many categories in which JonBenét competed. The talent competition was also a big part of it. Patsy and JonBenét were going to be prepared for this pageant.
Between Pamela Griffin, Anna Zapp and Patsy, they made some great outfits for JonBenét. Zapp was a dressmaker in Lafayette, Colorado, who typically made haute couture clothes and bridal gowns. She made a masquerade party dress out of black-and-white harlequin taffeta, and Patsy completed the ensemble with shoes and a party mask. She was also able to fashion the sportswear Coco Chanel-style from a sketch that Aunt Pam had drawn on a napkin. Zapp always said she loved sewing for JonBenét because it was like making doll clothes.
Pam Griffin made the pink “cowboy sweetheart” costume out of some polyester fabric Patsy bought in Atlanta for seven dollars a yard. Again, Patsy doctored up the white cowgirl hat and boots. It was precious. Griffin’s entire basement was wall-to-wall with costumes, dresses, dance wear, and accessories. She also kept ever color of sequins and rhinestones ever known to man in her sewing room.
That summer, 1996, JonBenét went prepared to the national Sunburst pageant in Atlanta. Patsy could give her credit for that. Patsy couldn’t give her the stage presence that God gave her. That was a gift.
For her talent she sang “Cowboy’s Sweetheart,” a song chosen by Aunt Pam and Grandma from Grandpa’s large selection of country music CD’s. Kit Andre, a dance instructor who also taught Kristine Griffin, JonBenét’s pageant coach, choreographed JonBenét's motions to the song. Where JonBenét excelled was in her expression. Her eyes and the smile on her face so captivated you, you didn’t pay attention to what her feet were doing or how well she sang. JonBenét made the top ten, but did not make the cut to the top five.
After the close of the pageant, the director of the pageant went up to the Ramsey’s and said, “I was really surprised that somebody from Colorado was as prepared as you were. JonBenét is a beautiful and talented little girl.”
In two years, JonBenét participated in nine pageants. Only two of these were national pageants, and earlier Royale Miss and the Sunburst.
JonBenét was looking forward to the day she could wear real evening gowns, just like her mother did in the Miss West Virginia pageant back in 1977.
Patsy was glad that JonBenét found an activity that she so enjoyed. JonBenét learned to win gracefully, accepting congratulations. She learned to lose in the same gracious way. JonBenét’s family were very proud to see JonBenét wear those crowns and now she wears the most glorious crown of all, but one her parents selfishly hadn’t wanted her to wear so soon.
32. A good friend of Patsy, Linda McLean, sent her a bear during her difficult times through cancer in 1993. When Linda’s husband was diagnosed with cancer in 1995, Patsy sent it back to Linda. Then in 1997, when JonBenét died, Linda sent it back to Patsy. Now, the bear sits in JonBenét’s child size antique Victorian rocking chair in the Ramsey’s living room; JonBenét had picked out the chair for herself at an antique shop in Boulder.
33. During Patsy’s cancer treatments, John would bring JonBenét and Burke to visit her. JonBenét was three and a half at the time and she would sit on Patsy’s hospital bed. Patsy remembers one day JonBenét came in while Patsy was having a blood transfusion to raise her white blood cell count. JonBenét squeezed the little crimson bag and followed the tube that ran up Patsy’s arm and disappeared under her hospital gown to the Porta-cath in her chest.
“Where’s that going, Mommy?” she asked.
“Into my body,” Patsy answered.
“That’s going to your heart!” JonBenét sounded exuberant. “It’s going to make you feel much better!”
As stated by Patsy during an interview:
………“You know, the children would come into my hospital room, you know, and she would—Burke was a little stand-offish, you know, he was 5 to 6 about that time you know. Just kind of, hands in his pockets, kind of looking around but didn’t really want to touch, you know. Well, JonBenét would come up and here’s the bag hanging there with this blood in it, she would come up and squish it, you know, and “What was this?” you know, and, “Where is this going?” you know and she would follow it up, you know, and “it’s going in here,” well, you know, “how does that go in there like that?” you know, and she would want to look in there and see, you know, “explain to me why is that helping you?” and “It’s alright Mommy,” she would say, “It’s alright, it won’t hurt very long,” you know, she was like my little cheerleader.”…………
34. In the visitor’s waiting room, there was a small oven where the kids could make cookies. The hospital kept fresh cookie dough in the refrigerator just for that purpose. Their grandfather would help the kids make cookies while they waited. One night, JonBenét and Burke went to see Patsy in the cancer ward, and they had pizza in the little family waiting room. Afterward the kids made cookies with their grandfather, as usual. At the end of their visit, Patsy walked the children down the hall toward the elevator. It was cold outside, and JonBenét was bundled up in a puffy pink coat and little white snow boots. The kids were giggling as they raced down the hall to see who could get to the elevator first to push the button.
The Ramsey’s called JonBenét the “up-girl.” That nickname came from the times they’d get on an elevator; JonBenét always rushed to push the up button.
She would run ahead, jump on the elevator, and say, “I want to push the up button. I’m the up girl.” Boy was she ever the “up” girl.
They later split the button pushing job fifty-fifty between Burke and JonBenét. Burke was the “down” boy and JonBenét was the “up” girl. Sometimes they’d go up when they wanted to go down because JonBenét always went first.
35. During Patsy’s illness, JonBenét had repeatedly asked, “Mommy, can we have a dog?”
Patsy would always answer, “Yes, when Mommy gets better.”
Well, Patsy did get better, and JonBenét did not forget her promise. One afternoon she was bugging her mother, “Please, can we go to the pet store?”
“Okay,” Patsy said. "But just to look.”
They went to a small pet store at Crossroads Mall, and JonBenét found this bichon frise that looked more like a stuffed animal than a dog. She looked up at Patsy, with this pleading look on her face and this little white puppy in her arms, and what was Patsy to do? They bought the dog on the spot. They named him “Jacques.” (French name pronounced like: “Jock.”)
About two or three weeks later, they noticed that Jacques didn’t seem to be acting right, so Patsy took him to the vet. After examining the dog, the vet shook his head and said, “You have a problem. Jacques is a very sick dog and probably won’t survive.” Patsy was devastated. Now the kids, who had fallen in love with the little puppy, would have to deal with his impending death. That just seemed like too much to put on these little ones who had already lost a sister and seen their mother ill with cancer.
Patsy asked the doctor to write down the dog’s ailment, and then went back to the pet shop and explained the dilemma. There was another bichon frise puppy available, and the pet shop manager suggested that they trade. They would do what they could for Jacques, and Patsy would take a healthy puppy home to her kids.
The new dog was a month younger, so he was smaller. But Patsy hoped they could pull off the transfer without JonBenét and Burke knowing. First Patsy took Jacques II to the vet and had the doctor run all kinds of tests to make sure they wouldn’t be in the same situation a few weeks earlier. He was given a clean bill of health. Patsy told the kids, “Jacques hasn’t been feeling well, so he’s at the vet. He’ll be home in a couple of days.” If Jacques II passed the JonBenét test (she was down on the floor all the time, playing with him), they’d be home free.
As soon as Patsy brought Jacques II to the house, JonBenét looked at him quizzically and then said, “He looks skinny.” Patsy explained that he might have lost weight because he had been sick. Soon JonBenét noticed that he didn’t seem to recognize his name, he didn’t know where the door was to go outside, and he didn’t remember the little games they always played, and, most important, he didn’t light up when he saw her. “I think maybe Jacques has a little amnesia from being so sick,” Patsy said with her fingers crossed. Thankfully, JonBenét seemed to accept that. Jacques II became as much a part of the family as Jacques I.
36. Boulder Christmas parades were always a big part of Boulder and every year, starting in 1993, the Ramsey’s had participated in them. In 1993, Burke was in one for his boy scouts troop. JonBenét begged to ride, but she was too young.
In 1995, Patsy came up with a float made from a sailboat decorated to look like “The Good Ship Lollipop.” Dressed like Christmas packages, the scouts walked along side the float, handing out candy. They even had life-size gingerbread men. JonBenét got to sit on a red seat in the back of the boat, singing the Good Ship Lollipop song. What a sight!
When 1996 rolled around, their friends, Mike and Pam Archuleta drove a Christmas-red BMW convertible with JonBenét and some of her little friends riding on the top of the back seat and waving at people.
37. In the spring of 1996, JonBenét had participated in the Royale Miss State Pageant in Denver, and had won her division title. To be prepared for the national competition, Patsy and JonBenét needed additional photos to develop a portfolio for JonBenét. They contacted photographer Randall Simons to set up a mutually convenient time. On June 5, 1996, Simons devoted an entire day to JonBenét, photographing her with cowboy hats, flowers in her hair, and many costume changes. JonBenét loved every moment of the experience, and she later won the national division title of America’s Royale Miss.
38. John was haunted by memories of JonBenét when he returned to work in his office on the third floor at Access Graphics, after his daughter’s death. Many times JonBenét would ride into work with her Daddy in the morning and sit in his lap for a few minutes behind his desk. She would play with all the objects on his desk or draw a picture while John got organized for the day. John would then walk JonBenét over to her school at the First Presbyterian Church, which was diagonally across the street. John could see the church from his office window, and it hurt to remember JonBenét playing on the small playground area or to remember the hand-in-hand walks to school John so much enjoyed as a proud dad. JonBenét was always so eager to get to class, and as soon as she walked in, she became absorbed with her little chums, sometimes forgetting to say good-bye to Daddy.
39. Valentine’s Day had been especially fun for JonBenét. The love celebrated on this occasion always touched Patsy, and she had tried to make the day special for the family. Patsy’s mother says it was her favorite holiday as a child, as well. In February 1996, JonBenét and Patsy had gone to Michael’s to buy puffy paint and two sweatshirt dresses to fashion into Valentine’s Day outfits. Together they had hand-painted the dresses. JonBenét had written, “I love you,” on hers, and Patsy had made little felt hearts with lace on the other one.
40. JonBenét had a mild case of asthma, which required frequent visits to the doctor.
41. On one occasion, when Patsy’s mother, Nedra, was in town, Judith Phillips, a photographer and now ex-friends of the Ramsey’s, had begged to photograph Patsy, Nedra, JonBenét and Burke for a mother-daughter series she was putting together. She also took pictures of JonBenét and Patsy, which gave her two generations of mothers and daughters. During Patsy’s struggle with cancer and losing her hair, Judith frequently asked to take her picture. Patsy tried to tell her that she was in a fight for her life and having her bald head snapped by Judith’s camera wasn’t high on her list of priorities. However, Judith persisted, so shortly after Patsy finished her chemotherapy, she acquiesced to doing a few pictures in the spring of 1994. These photos included one of JonBenét gingerly kissing her mothers bald head and another of JonBenét curiously placing her tiny hands on her mother’s head as Patsy smiled on.
42. One year, one of JonBenét’s classmates brought cupcakes to school because it was her birthday. Unfortunately, the mother had miscounted and come up with one cupcake short of the number of children in the class. Everyone was in a quandary, and the little girl didn’t feel like she should have to give her own cupcake away. “Why don’t we cut my cupcake in half?” JonBenét suggested. “That’s a good idea,” the teacher replied. “Then everyone can have one.” “Fine,” JonBenét replied. “I’ll take one of the halves and someone can eat the other one.” The teacher reported this incident to Charles Elbot, the principal of the school, who awarded JonBenét one of his “I caught you being good” rewards for her thoughtfulness. Boy was she ever proud!
43. The love of JonBenét felt in Charlevoix can be best described by a quote from a letter written to JonBenét after her death by the Witthoefs: “…We miss your silly smile and grass stained knees. We miss your flag dance routine and the way you would plead for fireworks after dark. We miss playing on the swing set and picking blueberries by the driveway. We miss riding decorated bikes, swimming in the pool, and swinging on sky chairs. We miss going to the beach to watch the sunset and skipping rocks in Lake Michigan. We miss sliding down the hill in cardboard boxes after spending hours decorating them with crayons and markers. We miss roasting hotdogs and marshmallows with you in the fire pit. Sister Socks, our cat, misses you too.…”
44. In a silent auction in Charlevoix Michigan, one of the items auctioned off was a lake in font of a clubhouse. JonBenét had been the first person to step into the swimming pool when it was built at the Charlevoix Country Club, and she had her picture taken by the local newspaper. The Ramsey’s thought it would be so nice to commemorate JonBenét’s life beside this lake. Patsy and John won the auction with the high bid of five hundred dollars, and the lake there is now named Lake JonBenét. In the future, the Ramsey’s hope to place a big rock beside the lake, with a little plaque to remember Little Miss Charlevoix.
45. In JonBenét’s preschool class, they always celebrated summer birthdays by selecting a day near the end of May and making that day a special celebration, since school would be out on their real birthdays. JonBenét was able to bring cupcakes, refreshments, and go through the whole school birthday celebration that first year of school when she was approaching six years old. And before we left for Charlevoix, the Ramsey’s always had a birthday party for her friends at the Ramsey’s home in Boulder. Of course, when they went to Atlanta, there was another celebration with Grandma and Grandpa and all of their Georgia friends. They had so many birthday celebrations that JonBenét had gotten confused about how old she was, assuming that every birthday party added a year to her age. At five, she had thought she must be at least eight years old!
46. On the day before Christmas, JonBenét had spent a good part of the time playing at her friend Megan Kostanick’s house. During this time, JonBenét told Barbara, Megan’s mother, that Santa was going to make a special visit to her after Christmas. Barbara had challenged her about this, thinking JonBenét had just gotten mixed up. Barbara told her, “No, Santa Claus comes on Christmas Eve. Tonight is Christmas Eve, and Santa comes this evening.” JonBenét had repeated, “No, Santa told me that he is making a special visit to me after Christmas. And it’s a secret”
47. JonBenét always said that the smoke rising from the snuffed candles was taking her prayers to Jesus in heaven.
48. JonBenét liked to watch channels Nickelodeon and Discovery.
49. The Ramsey’s memories of Christmas Eve 1996 were still vivid. The Ramsey’s had attended the family Christmas Eve service at St. John’s and had gone to Pasta Jay’s afterward for dinner. Then they drove up Baseline Road all the way to the star the city erects high on the rocky face overlooking Boulder. JonBenét had wanted to get out and walk to the center of the big star, outlined in white lights. Since she was wearing her black velvet Sunday shoes, Patsy suggested that we’d better wait and come back next Christmas with boots on. JonBenét was sorely disappointed. “Well, what’s the use of coming up here if we’re not going to stand in the middle of the star?”
50. In the Christmas season of 1997, the Ramsey’s received a handmade ornament from Quinn, JonBenét’s friend from kindergarten at High Peaks Elementary School with her name and JonBenét’s written on it. She had also written a poem about JonBenét: The Important thing about JonBenét is… She was always there for me. She had golden hair. She was never mean. She helped me. She knew how to treat a friend. She was generous. But the most important thing about JonBenét is… She was always there for me.
51. John always had this dream about JonBenét. In each of these dreams JonBenét was the same, about three years old, filled with affection, always smiling and happy. In this dream she ran enthusiastically into her dadddy's arms and crawled up on his lap. John could feel her tenderness as she cuddled close. JonBenét laid her head on her daddy’s shoulder, and in a few moments quietly went to sleep.
52. JonBenét was the spark plug in her family. If she saw John frowning or looking concerned, she would say, “Dad, I don’t like that face.” Of course, John would put on a big smile and then she’d say, “That’s better, Dad.” That was her personality.
53. JonBenét was different, a special child, with a unique purpose in this world. JonBenét had truly completed a remarkable journey. In both her life and death, she had touched people around this globe.
54. In Christmas 1996, the gift that JonBenét had given Patsy was a little green construction paper ornament JonBenét had been in her class at school. When Patsy had opened it on December 25th, 1996, she saw her school picture with the message: “Your gift is ME.”
55. In 1993, John and Patsy were talking when suddenly an ear splitting siren filled the house. John bolted forward in his chair. Patsy’s eyes widened as if she’d just grabbed a 220-volt wire. John realized that the unbearably loud noise was the burglar alarm going off. Patsy ran for the back entry hall, and there was three year old JonBenét standing on a stool with her fingers on the alarm system panel. Apparently, she’d been reaching for the button to open the garage door and hit the buttons on the alarm systems instead. “This makes my ears loud,” JonBenét said putting her hands over her ears. Patsy grabbed her and tried to turn the system off, but she suddenly realized that she didn’t have any idea what the numeric code was to disarm the system. Patsy had already put JonBenét in thier car inside the garage to protect her ears when the police arrived. After 30 agonizing minutes, the deafening system finally timed out and quit.
56. Patsy had given JonBenét a tiny gold bracelet on the evening of December 23, 1996. It was the evening of the Ramsey family Christmas party, and since JonBenét was all dressed up, Patsy had decided to her open the gift early so she could wear it during the holidays. The bracelet was inscribed with her name on the front and on the back with the date she was actually supposed to receive it: 12-25-96.