A grandmother's powerful love

LOVE for a dying grandson yesterday saw 77-year-old Scottsdale resident Margaret Caulfield sitting for what she says will be her final tattoo.

Scottsdale's Margaret Caulfield, 77, getting her tattoo from Tubby Quinn at the Tattoo Studio at Mowbray.

Scottsdale's Margaret Caulfield, 77, getting her tattoo from Tubby Quinn at the Tattoo Studio at Mowbray.

``The Power of Love'' and ``Family'' were punctured into her thinning skin as family members huddled into a Mowbray tattoo parlour in support of her gesture.

The pain was nothing compared with what it represented, according to Mrs Caulfield, who proudly showed the work - a tribute to her 23-year-old grandson with cancer.

``I did it because he loves tattoos,'' she said.

``He's got Love, Respect, Family tattooed around his neck.

``He's dying of lymphoma and the only thing he's worried about is the family, it's pretty tough.''

She said maintaining strong bonds between the family were deeply ingrained values, with seven children, 20 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren within her immediate circle.

``We had a reception with all the family on Friday, he made a speech which had us all pretty upset,'' Mrs Caulfield said.

``I've lost two brothers, my daughter and my husband to cancer.''

The touching tribute does not stand alone and adds to a butterfly on her shoulder - gained while she was in her mid-70s.

``When my daughter died, I got the butterfly,'' Mrs Caulfield said, explaining attempts to reach through to her after the death.

``I said, `If you can hear me, tell me when you have' . . . I didn't hear anything and I didn't hear anything, but then two big butterflies flew into my apex, circled twice and flew out again.

``That was her and her dad.''

Mrs Caulfield will turn 78 in November.

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