Words fail me at this time and only shock and sorrow fill my mind. The only way I can express what my dear friend Mary meant to me is through writing to her as if I was emailing:
I called you on Monday at your house and left you a rather lengthy message. I knew Chuck would probably hear it if he was about the house and figured you were either outside with Bella or perhaps getting ready for work. I remember at the end that I said that I wanted you to know that I was thinking of you and more often than I call. I ended the message leaving my home phone number and repeated it twice to make sure you called back. It has been a long time my friend since we've chatted.
This morning at 8:36 am (EST), June 14th I hear the telephone ring. I was watching our Red Tailed Hawks at Cornell University. All three chicks fledged the nest! I am sure you were watching it when you had spare time. I quickly "X"d out of the live feed of the Red Tails in preparation of our long winded, laughing, crying, moan and groan about symptoms telephone call. But, it was not YOU, it was Chuck, your husband. The moment I heard his voice an unsettling feeling swept over me, but in the back of my mind, I figured he was going to say you were in the hospital for some relapse or other.
It was not that. He clarified with me that I am the "National Geographic" and MedHelp forum "Lisa" and as I said yes, he then proceeded to tell me he was sad to inform me that you died yesterday. My heart sank to the pit of my stomach, the room began to spin. I was hyperventilating as if an axiety attack was about to submerge.
Your husband proceeded to tell me what happened and that you were not feeling good, yet you still went to PT. You were suppose to work on Wednesday but again you were not feeling good. You were about to open your front door to your house and realized you needed to call 911 and did so. The neighbors saw the ambulance arrive at your house and immediately called your children and Chuck.
I heard you went into cardiac arrest in the ambulance and they recussitated you. Then I heard Upon the arrival in the ER, you again arrested and was revived. They took you to get a CT scan and again, you arrested. This time you were placed on a ventilator. You had a long night and in the morning they did an EEG, showing that you did not have any brain activity. At this time, my eyesight was so blurry from the overflow of tears, I could barely see 2 feet in front of me as I'm writing down notes of what transpired on post-a-notes so I can relay this information to your friends on Medhelp correctly.
What pains me the most Mary, is that I did not speak to you before you left us to join your Mother and sister -- that I could not tell you how much you have meant to me for 3 years of talking on the telephone and the visit to Ohio or you visiting me that never materialized and for reasons you and I both know was not monetarily possible. But it was alright to dream. It was alright to hope and express what we wish we could do.
I have missed you Mary and I'm sorry that I have not called you sooner. I'm angry at myself for allowing so much time to settle in between.
I know you missed your sister and Mother. I know it pained you to no end. I know the struggles you were going through everyday and yet, you always seemed to have a positive attitude and worked yourself through it.
You were the voice of reason, the knight and shining armor of many. You have touched the lives of all these people in MedHelp and your ongoing support (online and off). You were a dedicated medical professional and your reputation is beyond reproach.
Mary as I told you before, you are the most intelligent, wonderful, compassionate women I have ever met. We instantly became friends. I told you I knew I liked you from the first time you posted on my threads and our email exchanges. Everything seemed to fall into place as our friendship evolved and became something more special other than social media on a medical forum.
To my dearest friend and collegue may you rest in peace in the hands of God. May all your suffering and tribulations come to rest, even though it was too soon for many of us, including myself.
Don't you worry about your children and grandchildren, they will be fine. They had a great example to follow and you know as well as I do, that apples don't fall far from the tree.
You will always be in my heart Mary and always be in my thoughts. Not a day will go by that I wont think of you or the memory of your sister or Mother and how much they have meant to you.
Goodbye to my sweetest and dearest friend.
I love you
Mary was a great friend even though we never met in person. That trip to go see her never came to fruition. I wish it had!
Mary was a very intelligent, kind and giving person. She always was giving to others and I will miss her very much. Her first thoughts were always of what she could do to help out someone else. It is often difficult to find that kind of giving soul these days. She was a true gift to this world!!
My heart aches so badly I will not be able to express through typed words exactly what Mary meant, and still does mean to me. I will share with you all though, like a handful of others here I have my own experiences with Mary outside the forum. Not able to give her the hug in person I always longed for, and one we talked about often. We felt the want through the phone.
Like Bren mentions here, you were all important to her, and she prided herself in making sure she provided accurate information, and a smile or two. She had a wonderful sense of humor, and had the ability to put thought to paper in an eloquent manner. We would laugh on the phone from things and people like Si from Duck Dynasty, often PMing the same, acting silly for no good reasonl. I will cherish these moments and conversations in my life forever.
She kept so many things private that I can relate to, but she shared so much as well. Her good advice and guidance will also live on the www forever, and I'm grateful for that as so many for generations will benefit from the time she gave here.
Losses that come suddenly are so hard to handle. I find myself wishing it hadn't been months since we last spoke, I can still hear her voice though, but can't believe I'll not hear it again, but desperately wishing I had picked up the phone and made time to call for one last marathon conversation.
Her family should know what she means to us, perhaps we can send them this discussion, and mentions of our world here can be included during her arrangements. Surely, those who are able to attend, need to know this world, our world that she gave so freely too.
I wish this weren't so, and I find myself not believing it, I know, but have not accept it. Much like she did with her sister - something she shared a bit of on her journal. She was a true sister and I cherish her, and this forum that brought us together. All of us together in one way or another.
Thank you, Ren for posting this, though she was private would have wanted you too do so I know for certain.
All, I too encourage you all to express how you feel if you can, so we can sent this to her family.
Posting her profile here, and still feel this can't be so.
On behalf of everyone at MedHelp, please accept our deepest condolences at this difficult time. Without Co-CL Twopack's genuine dedication and commitment towards helping people, we will greatly miss her presence on your MS Community.
At any time, if we can be of additional assistance, please feel free to send a PM to me at: MH Community Mgr
MH Community Mgr
What a beautiful tribute you just gave Mary! You found the words that I cannot at this time. But, she was , as you said, a sister. And her humor, advice and lovely personality is something I will dearly miss!!!
I'm so sorry to hear this. I didn't know her like many of you did, but so many of her posts were helpful to me and encouraging when I was brand new to MS. Very sorry to hear of her passing and will be praying for her family in this difficult time.
Oh my, I'm just stunned by this very sad news. Mary's absence will leave a huge hole in this tight group. I always appreciated her calm, logical, reasoned, thoughtful replies and her wonderful wit. I didn't know her outside of Medhelp, but I'm sure she was as good a friend in the 'real' world as she was to all of us here. I hope her family will know how much she meant to us. So sad at the loss of our dear friend.
I am just seeing this news and really don't know what to say. She had been concerned about her heart problems, ever since we first met several years ago. It weighed on her that something was wrong but wasn't ever fully diagnosed and treated.
This news is difficult for everyone, I am sure. Mary will definitely be missed.
I'm fairly new to the forum but Mary was one of the first people to 'friend' me on the forum. I found her attitude both admirable and reassuring - the way she so obviously loved her family and life irrespective of her health problems. Her attitude helped me to see that despite ill-health, life could still be good.
I have to say that I also admired her creativity and attitude as evidenced by her username, 'Twopack' - the companionship she shared with her dog, Bella, really resonated with me.
My heartfelt condolences to her husband, children, and family, and to other forum users who obviously have been close with Mary over the years. God keep and bless you all at this difficult time.
Hi everyone -
I am so sorry to hear this, and for the incredible loss you all must be feeling. I didn't get to know Mary as you all did, but did get the opportunity to have a couple of phone calls with her, and talk with her extensively in on-going emails.
I hope it will help to know that she was fiercely loyal and dedicated to every single one of you, and when she didn't agree with a decision we made as moderators, she fought hard for your community, but was always respectful, polite and thoughtful.
Mary was an amazing woman, and I will miss her.
I am sorry to hear this news today. Mary has always been a kind supportive women. Her knowledge about MS has benefited me greatly. She gave me encouragement when I wanted to give up. She will be missed around the forum. May she rest in peace
She was a great friend to me on this forum.
It makes me think I should to reach out to more friends here.
here's a quote I saw in the hospital when my son was critically ill,
By John Wesley
Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as you can.”
Best wishes to everyone.
Thank you Lisa for sharing that with us. It was beautiful...so touching. I got a call fom Ren this morning about Mary. I am so shocked, words havent formed yet. I will hopefully be able to attend her funeral next week.
I saw her about a month ago as we were each others "dates" at many MS meetings in our area. Sometimes Chuck came, so I was the third wheel :-)
She was a wonderful, intelligent, sensitive, and kind soul. I will indeed miss her and our talks where she gave freely of herself and was so smart about many stuations. God bless you Mary.
one thing about Mary that most of you don't know and she didn't want made public for a variety of concerns, is she was not only a nurse but also had received her MS certification about two years ago. She put a lot of herself into all things MS.
Thanks, Lisa, for sharing your thoughts. And Michelle, I know this must be difficult for you as well since you two regularly spent time together. I jst told my husband this news and he was incredibly sad, since he had met Mary and Chuck more than once. Distance doesn't make this any easier.
hugs to all,
Being new to the forum I never had the opportunity to know Mary and I can feel the sorrow through the posts here for those who did know her. It sounds as though she was an incredible person and it saddens me that her life was cut so quickly. My thoughts and prayers are with her loved ones which I am sure includes many of you here. I am glad she is at peace.
Shelly, eloquently written as always. You're the sweetest person.
Ren -- It's been a hard day (for many of us too), take your time and know I love you.
Emily -- Beautifully written and with such compassion. Thank you for acknowledging her endless intelligent, empathetic and compassionate contribution to the MS community.
LuLu, how fortunate you were to be in the presence of an angel such as Mary. It was my wish to meet her someday. Lovely tribute.
Ava, doublevision, dogum -- thank you for taking the time to express condolences and acknowledging Mary for what she truly was -- an inspiration.
Jonnybear - That quote is phenomenal and is the epitome of Mary.
I went through all my old emails outside of Medhelp with Mary and its so hard to believe this happened. I go back and forth between reality and shock with this news. It's so hard to believe I will never speak to her again.
She was truly one of a kind.
I have lost one of my BFF on this forum, who privately knew many of my sorrows, problems and dreams. She would share bits and pieces of her experience, both of us nurses, and I would always come away feeling better, like I had just talked to my best friend. On a rare occasion, it would be my turn to boost her up and out of a slump and we had always promised to actually get together one of these years.
The forum has suffered a great loss but she would be very disappointed if we did not rally together as the family we are, and wish her well on her trip to the next level and reunion with her family that has gone on ahead of her. I am sure she will keep up with all of us in her new home.
Happy Trip Mary and we miss you so much already.....
Many hugs to keep you company on your trip
I am shocked and saddened to hear about Mary "twopack". She always had good advice to give me and many others. She cared for everyone like we were her biological family. I will miss her!
Sending prayers and condolences to her family
JB= you hit the nail on the head about Mary with your quote!
Sarah- Great tribute to a wonderful person!
Laurie- Thank you for sharing!
Lisa- Great piece. Thank you for sharing!!!
Lu, Michelle, Corrie- Thanks so much for adding to this great tribute to Mary. My heart goes out to those who got the opportunity to actually spend time in her presence. I'm sure this hard for you as my missing our 6 hour marathon telephone calls!
Love you Mary! Godspeed on your journey to meet those you loved so much!
Oh my goodness. I'd not been on in a couple of days. I'm just staring at her name in my tiny friends list and trying to have it make sense. I'm stunned. I genuinely have nothing of worth to say here. Just trying to process this.
I think your sentiment and reaction is shared by many, including me.