Steven Curtis Chapman Remembers Daughter Maria 15 Years After Her Tragic Death

Steven Curtis Chapman

CCM artist Steven Curtis Chapman and his wife, Mary Beth pause to remember their late daughter. Fifteen years ago, their daughter, Maria Sue Chapman, then just 5 years old, died in a tragic accident. The Chapmans adopted their daughter Maria Sue from China in 2004. Just a few years later, when their daughter was five years old, one of the Chapmans' sons accidentally struck Maria Sue with an SUV in the driveway, tragically ending her life. 

"There's humility in just knowing: God, you are God, and I am not," Chapman said to Christian Headlines. "But even having walked through our own personal loss of our daughter and 15 years into that journey-that doesn't go away, that doesn't get easier. What do you do with that?"

On X (formerly Twitter), Chapman shared old family photos, including of Maria Sue. He said, "God is with us...God is for us...God is faithful...God is good...still!"

The artist then quoted the now-late Pastor Tim Keller about grief: "Grieve with hope; wake up and be at peace; laugh in the face of death, and sing for joy at what's coming. If Jesus Christ has you by the hand, you can sing."

Because of the amazing outpouring of love and support from family, friends, and fans of the Chapmans, donations made in their daughter's memory to Maria's Miracle Fund helped build and launch Maria's Big House of Hope-Show Hope's flagship Care Center in Central China providing care for children with acute medical and special needs. And today, Maria's Miracle Fund continues to impact children and families through its support of Show Hope's Medical Care grants work. 

In a career that has spanned more than three decades, Steven Curtis Chapman is the most-awarded artist in Christian music history. With 59 Gospel Music Association Dove Awards, five GRAMMY® Awards, an American Music Award, and 49 No. 1 singles, he has sold more than eleven million albums with ten RIAA-Certified® Gold or Platinum albums to his credit. 

In his career, he has collaborated with and had his songs recorded by other renowned artists in the Christian music world including BeBe Winans, CeCe Winans, Amy Grant, Casting Crowns, Mercy Me, Geoff Moore, and others. His songs of hope have also crossed genres, seeing collaborations with Billy Dean, Glenn Campbell, Gary LeVox of Rascal Flatts, Ricky Skaggs, Brad Paisley, and Lauren Alaina.

In 2017, Chapman also became a best-selling author with his memoir Between Heaven and the Real World: My Story.He is also the recent recipient of the BMI Icon Award. Given to him in June 2022, Chapman is the first Christian music songwriter to receive the honor, joining an elite list that includes Barry Manilow, Brian Wilson, Carole King, Dolly Parton, Kris Kristofferson, Merle Haggard, and Sting.  

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