On October 30, 2009, my mother – Mama – ended her sixteen-month struggle with ovarian cancer. Though the shadow this has cast over us is very dark, she was herself all about warmth and light, and therefore rather than dwell on her loss, I would like to recall instead all the fun and wonderful times we’ve shared with her.
These past weeks have made me realize even more clearly than before the importance of friends and family, at both good times and bad. This experience has brought home to me the truth that we come into this world with no material goods, and leave all ours behind when we go – but if we leave behind memories of love, laughter, joy, courage – these are greater and more important than any monument.
As phone calls, emails and messages have poured in from all over the world, recounting memories of Mama – a warm hug, thoughtful gifts, a well-set table, shopping trips and lunches at museums, words of advice and encouragement, a love of dinners and dancing, the joy of seizing the day and living for the moment – I realize that these stories are her greatest legacy, and because of them, she will always be with us, watching over us and sharing our lives.
Last updated on: 11/25/2009
Although I never met your mom, she must have been a wonderful person to have a child like you. May God watch over you and your family.
Theresa Panarella – 12/03/2009
I would also like to acknowledge some others who made contributions to fighting ovarian cancer in my mom’s name, either through through the OCRF or similar organizations in their home countries.
Meredith Weiss, Veena Kumar, Eric Rosand & family, Cathy Helt and family. In addition, countless others have contributed to OCRF by purchasing “teal ribbon” pins from me, and the collated funds will be contributed to OCRF in my mom’s name as well. Thank you, everyone, from her family.
Naureen Fink – 12/08/2009
Thank you Theresa, she was indeed truly wonderful.
Naureen Fink – 12/11/2009
I was truely shocked to hear of your Mom’s death Naureen, I had not heard from her for some time and imagined her in another part of the world sorting out your father’s latest posting, changing things, buying things to make another new home, she used to phoned me sometimes while she was working just for a chat, I treasure those phone calls – I’m glad she appeared in my life when she did and will keep her in my heart always – I will always value her friendship
June Keay – 08/12/2010