Motley Moose – Archive

Since 2008 – Progress Through Politics

Wishing Madelyn Dunham Well

Madelyn Dunham, Barack Obama’s grandmother and the person whom he credits with much of his upbringing and character is in ill health, and Obama is taking several days off late this week to go see her in Hawaii.


Obviously Barack would not be traveling to Hawaii at this specific time unless there were grave concerns for his grandmother’s well being.

We wish Mrs. Dunham and all of her family well.

Madelyn Dunham has put her family before her own needs, choosing with her husband to live in the small apartment she inhabits to this day rather than a house, in part so her grandson could attend Ponahou preparatory school.  “We never suffered”, she told David Mendell when interviewed for his book “From Promise to Power”.  “We’re not poverty stricken.”

Mrs. Dunham grew her career by her own hand from an entry-level clerk to the first Vice President at the Bank of Hawaii.  She provided the seriousness and work ethic that has seen Barack to where he has gone in life.  “I’ll admit that I did give him a few kicks in the pants,” she told Mendell.  “Not many, but a few.”  

Madelyn Dunham sums up much of what makes America great, as do so many of our grandmothers.  My own grandmother came from extremely humble roots, raised five children alone and saw them all into successful lives.  Among her grandchildren she was – and is – an example that leads us all to this very day.   I speak for the twelve of us cousins when I say we would all rather lose a hand than do anything to disappoint Gramma.  I think Gramma Dammie would have liked you, Mrs. Dunham.

Thank you for all you have done, Mrs. Dunham.  Best to you and your wonderful family.


  1. But I just reread your passage on your own grandmother. She sounds like an amazing woman. Unfortunately both my grandmothers died in the war from illness. But my mother, child of an Armenian refugee, was adopted by an English family. She went on to have five children too, and then – guess what – adopted a sixth, my kid brother. He was the abandoned son of man from Barbados.

    One of the things that touches me about this photo above, and the Obama family life story, is this connection between broken roots, mended by loving families.  

  2. spacemanspiff

    La amo únicamente por la persona que fue conmigo.  

    Me ayudo alcanzar el éxito.

    Siempre será una de las personas mas importantes en mi vida.

    Se quedó plasmada en mi corazón su amor incondicional.

    Tal vez como daño colateral pagó mis loqueras.

    La que me enseño como vivir la vida.

    Ella fue.

    She was the one.

  3. hootie4170

    …nickname was Toots.  She was invaluable part of my life and was instrumental in my upbringing.  My thoughts and prayers go out to Barack and his family.

    This should ring a “reality check” to those so heavily involved in this Presidential race.  We only have so much time on this Earth to spend with the ones we love, be careful not to take it for granted.

  4. Iraq Vet and Obamanaut Cheryl Kopec shares this:

    The campaign office in Hawaii will forward all well-wishes. Let’s make it easy on them by not making them deal with opening hundreds of thousands of envelopes on top of everything else they’re doing. I know I’m gonna have a hard time fitting everything I want to say on a postcard, but I know it will include deep gratitude for raising such a decent person who now, for the first time in my life, has inspired me to get involved in my country’s political process and work for change. I have never worked so hard, for so long, for any one cause, ever.

    The address:

    Mrs. Madelyn Dunham

    In care of: Obama for America

    Honolulu Headquarters

    1050 Ala Moana Blvd Ste D2690

    Honolulu, HI 96814

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