The end of March was a bit of a rough time. I shed many tears for my own loses and the loses of several families. You know how they say death comes in 3s? For me, it was three in one week.
- Dave, 52, passed away after a 6-month battle with cancer on March 22th. I already wrote about him here. Though I knew Dave only a short time, he was a great example of how to live gently and humbly and how to die with grace and hope.
- JoAnn, 76, passed away after a long battle with cancer on March 25th. I’ve known JoAnn for as long as I can remember. She and her husband Dick were ever present in the life of the small church I grew up in: leading VBS crafts, serving in the kitchen, giving smiles and hugs. I used to cat-sit for them when they went on vacation. JoAnn was a talented artist, and I am so thankful to have two of her beautiful watercolors hanging in my home today. They will always remind me of her and the sweetness she brought to life.
- Dylan, 22, was in a freak accident on his way to class at the University of Cincinnati on March 28th. A wheel came off of a semi truck going north on I-75, bounced over the median, and smashed into Dylan’s van on southbound I-75. I only met Dylan a few times, but it was obvious he was a sweet guy. I’ve spent time with his parents, Tim and Lisa, at a few occasions over the past couple years since the family moved to town. If ever there was a family who’s had their share of hardship, it’s that one.
Dave’s memorial service was just two weeks ago on April 9th. I brought a wad of kleenex with me and still barely had enough. It was such a beautiful, God-honoring service; I think Dave would have liked it. When he knew the end was near, he recorded a message for our church body. While hard to watch in many way, I can hardly express how good it was to hear from him one last time. His family also put together a wonderful slideshow of life, which you can see here.
That next Sunday, Pastor Wayne took a break from his normal series in the book of Luke to address the recent hardships in our church body. Not only did Dave’s and Dylan’s deaths hit close together, some families have been dealing with new cancer diagnoses. All this happened while Wayne and a large group, including several elders, were out of the country.
It’s been strange to be pregnant while death has surrounded me, but a good reminder that life comes and goes in God’s timing and He is good through it all.