13M Shelter Meals Donated 143K Toys Donated $284K Funded for Service Dogs $30K Disaster Relief Funds Raised 163K Rescue Miles Funded

90-Year-Old Woman Declined Chemo, Lived Life To The Fullest By Traveling With Her Dog

Despite being 90 years old and receiving a life-threatening diagnosis, the beautiful Miss Norma is still full of life.

Just days after her husband’s passing, she was diagnosed with uterine cancer. Ready to live the rest of her life to the fullest, Norma decided to hit the road with her son, daughter-in-law, and their Poodle, Ringo, in their motor home.

The Facebook page, Driving Miss Norma, recounts a conversation with the doctor:

We explained to the well-meaning doctor and his student that we live in an RV and that we will be taking her wherever she wants to go. He didn’t hesitate to say, “RIGHT ON!” We asked if he thought us irresponsible for this approach. His reply was telling.

“As doctors,” he said, “we see what cancer treatment looks like everyday. ICU, nursing homes, awful side effects and honestly, there is no guarantee she will survive the initial surgery to remove the mass. You are doing exactly what I would want to do in this situation. Have a fantastic trip!”

Now with Ringo as their co-pilot, son Tim and his wife Ramie chauffeur the well-deserving Norma on adventures across the country.

co pilot
Driving Miss Norma via Facebook

Ringo has gotten particularly close to Norma.

Ringo and Norma
Driving Miss Norma via Facebook

Here are just some of the adventures they’ve had:

Strolling in the Historic District in Beaufort, South Carolina

Driving Miss Norma via Facebook

Riding on a Historic Savannah Carriage Tour in Georgia

Driving Miss Norma via Facebook

Enjoying the scenery in Saint Augustine, Florida 

Driving Miss Norma via Facebook

Collecting seashells on Sanibel Island in Florida

Driving Miss Norma via Facebook

Contemplating alien life at the International UFO Museum & Research Center in Roswell, New Mexico

Driving Miss Norma via Facebook

Taking in the breathtaking scenery at the Grand Canyon in Arizona

Grand Canyon
Driving Miss Norma via Facebook

Being silly as they explore Estes Park, Colorado

Goofing off
Driving Miss Norma via Facebook

It looks like they’re all having the time of their lives!

This is such a beautiful story about a family’s love for each other and living life to the fullest. Check out more of this family’s adventures–and those to come!–on their Facebook page, Driving Miss Norma.

Special thanks to this family for letting us share their wonderful story, and we wish them the best of luck and safe travels.

Driving Miss Norma via Facebook


Sadly, Miss Norma passed away on September 30, 2016. She will be dearly missed by her family, friends, and nearly half a million Facebook fans who joined her on one epic road trip. Miss Norma and her family radiated happiness and optimism, and were true believers in living life to the fullest.

“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” — Winnie the Pooh

What’s more, they showed the world how fulfilling a sense of adventure can be when you share it with your family, both two- and four-legged.

“Life is better with a dog.” –Charlie Brown.

Our thoughts and prayers are with them. Rest in peace, sweet Norma. You were a beautiful example for the world.

“Life is a balance between holding on and letting go.”– Rumi

Do you want a healthier & happier dog? Join our email list & we'll donate 1 meal to a shelter dog in need!

Written by Karen Tietjen

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Story Page