Jude Henault, 37, a single mother of three, "was a best friend to everyone she came in contact with," her youngest brother, Mark Brown, said yesterday. She attended the Great White concert with her live-in boyfriend, Samuel J. Miceli Jr., who had won two free tickets from a New London, Conn., radio station.
Some of Henault's happiest moments were with her three children, Andrew, 10, Rachel, 12, and Angela, 19, said Brown, 32, a West Hartford, Conn. resident. She took them shopping, to the beach, and camping regularly. "Everything she did was for her kids," he said.
Four years ago, Brown gave his sister "The Game of Life and How to Play It," a motivational self-help book.
"I read it and shared it with her, and she hung on to it," he said. "She carried it with her, and book-marked certain passages." He said Henault would read the inspirational vignettes of the book to herself and others, and often gave copies of the book as gifts.
Henault's co-workers in the income audit department at the Foxwoods Resort Casino in Norwich, Conn., are organizing a bake sale and raffle to raise money for an education fund for Henault's children. One co-worker, Trina Murphy, said Henault used to take her children into the office on her days off and, even when things got tough, she always made co-workers smile.
Brown said that when they were growing up, he loved to spend time with his sister, the closest in age among the five Brown siblings. "I remember her taking me out sledding by the beach, ice skating, summers at the pool," he said. "I was always looking up to my big sister."
Even as adults, the two talked three or four times a week, Brown said. "She was my rock, and I was her rock through a lot of ups and downs," he said.