Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Not a typical post

I've been out of the loop for 4 days -- long Labor Day weekend vacation, 12th wedding anniversary, college football, and lots of mileage on the mini-van.

But for all the fun that we had, it was mired by the news that one of my best friends and sorority sisters, Shannon, died on Sunday.

Shannon was diagnosed 10 years ago, at the age of 33, with breast cancer.  After an intense treatment and 5 years of remission, it came back terminal 2 years ago.  We had a marvelous luncheon for her when we found out that she would not survive this.  We thought she had just months to live then.  But Shannon was a warrior and kept cancer at bay for 2 more years.  Earlier this summer, she suffered a series of strokes that left her paralyzed on her right side.  She still fought on.  But like cancer seems to do, it takes the best and brightest. 

Shannon had a wit all her own and a very distinctive voice that I can still hear in my head.  She loved the Denver Broncos, John Elway, New York City and pink frosted lipstick.  She was a flight attendant for American Airlines and when I was single and traveling for work, I always hoped I would see Shannon on one of my flights.  When I was moving from Tulsa to Washington DC, Shannon flew in just to help me pack (something I would have forgotten if I hadn't discovered the pictures of us in my nasty, little apartment).

Since finding out about her death, I haven't been able to open the cover of a book.  Reporting to you about what I am reading seems so silly. 

But I will have plenty of time to read on my flight to Dallas tomorrow for the memorial service.  I just hope the sight of a flight attendant doesn't bring me to tears.

The gang at Shannon's luncheon -- she is on the left in the back row -- white blazer over a black shirt.  Even more disturbing, Angie (red hair, front, middle) passed away last December totally unexpectedly due to complications from diabetes.  We are far too young to be dying.