Cancer Takes Another Life

Cancer took another life this weekend. My mother, June Sievers, passed away on Saturday.

She had fought the disease for years, but in the end, it was just too much.

She died a few days before what would have been her 84th birthday. I know she must have been disappointed by one thing. My mother had a fierce will to live, and she was determined to outlive her own mother, also a cancer patient, who lived to be 94.

My mom endured her share of the pain cancer can bring. Surgeries, radiation, countless procedures. Through it all, she was always more worried about me and how I was feeling.

The only thing we really argued about was the guilt she felt for passing on the genetic predisposition for colon cancer. No matter how many times I told her that was ridiculous, wrong, just plain silly, she still thought that somehow my cancer was her fault.

It's impossible to sum up a life in so small a space. She loved spicy food, movies, mostly adventures or thrillers. And she loved to head out on the open road for a long drive. She loved our annual Halloween parties, coming one year dressed as "Leroy's Mom."

When I was young, I had a toy fire truck that actually sprayed water. She would make shoebox houses, set them on fire in the driveway, and let me put them out.

Some 40 years later, I wrote about that in the Nightline daily e-mail. She called me, worried that people might think she was a bad mother for letting me play with fire.

I thought long and hard about whether I should write anything in the blog about her. In the end, I didn't see how I could go without saying something about her life, and her death.

I think I probably learned how to fight this disease by watching her. What better gift could she have given me?

I will miss her.

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Leroy I am so sorry for the loss of your mother but what a wonderful tribute to her spirit and legacy. She set a goal for all of us, don't give up until you are past 80!

Sent by Dona | 8:08 AM | 3-24-2008

Oh Leroy, I am so sorry for you and all who loved her. I'm glad you wrote about her. As the mother of a now-16 year old boy, I understand playing with fire. I watched years ago, with a bucket of water in hand, as my son used a magnifying glass to start a little bit of fire. I think she was a wonderful mom! Thanks for sharing her with us.
Prayers especially for you and Laurie.

Sent by Laura | 8:14 AM | 3-24-2008

I am so sorry about your mother.

Sent by Jen | 8:14 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I am so sorry for your loss. You, your mother and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. She sounds like she was a wonderful mom.

Sent by Mary Cannon | 8:14 AM | 3-24-2008

I am at a loss for words...but what I can say is that you are in my thoughts and prayers and so is your mom as she travels into Heaven!

Sent by Cristina Gonzalez, Tampa, Florida | 8:19 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy Sorry to hear about your mother but you need to keep fighting that is what she would want just like her,

Sent by luisa | 8:23 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy......no words....only our offer of comfort and love. What a beautiful women and now we all know why you are the way you are!
Her fight and spirit lives on in you - however, no one can fill the void of her love and what it meant to you.
Lifting you up again in thoughts and prayers!

Sent by Ruth Chermok | 8:23 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
You are a good man. She must have been a good mom, 'cuz, damn, just look at her boy. I'm sorry for your loss. Blessings to you and yours.
Kate

Sent by Kate Fuehrer | 8:24 AM | 3-24-2008

Aw Leroy, I am so sorry... Guess that explains a bit about who you are. She sounds like a wonderful person.

Sent by Robin L. from Fairfax VA | 8:24 AM | 3-24-2008

Oh,I am sorry to read your news and hope that those fabulous memories of your Mother will help ease the loss. It is painful to lose a parent and your portrait is of a very special Mom, indeed.

She may have given you the genetic markers for cancer. She also gave you a spirit for life and a sense of adventure that far outweigh the other.

I leave today for a few weeks adventure in Europe and spotty internet access; will catch you when possible to send cyber postcards. Keep working at the PT and all good wishes.

Peggy

Sent by Peggy | 8:27 AM | 3-24-2008

Heartfelt condolences to you and your family. So very sorry for your loss.

Sent by Sandy Lathe | 8:29 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

I am truly sorry for your loss. You have made your mom proud! My thoughts are with you now and always.

Sent by Sue Chap | 8:30 AM | 3-24-2008

My condolences to you. Losing a parent is one of life's major events..I know first hand. It's sounds like you had a Mother that loved mothering and we seem to always need/want that. I'm glad that you paid tribute to her.

Sent by Susan | 8:32 AM | 3-24-2008

I am very sorry for your loss. If you have not done so, I would urge you to write down your memories of your mother to pass along to the next generations. It will give them a glimpse into the life of someone special and one who helped you become you!

I wrote passages for myself as I chronicled my mother's journey with Alzheimer's and will pass it along to my kids and grandkids. I'd like them to know a bit of their heritage.

I'm sure the passing of your mother is most diffcult for you and your family. Pick out a special place in your heart to keep her memory alive so that you can draw upon her strength as you need to.

Blessings and prayers as always.

Sent by Al Cato | 8:34 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I am so sorry to hear about your loss. Thank you for sharing your memories of her with everyone. I know you will miss her, but I also know you will see her everyday, because it sounds like she gave you her own determined spirit.
Having lost my father to a heart attack, and my mother-in-law to cancer, I know the pain of losing a parent. My prayers are with you. God Bless.

Sent by Kathleen, NJ | 8:38 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy I am so sorry about your Mom. Life won't exactly ever be the same again. I share with you the colon cancer genetic issue and the parent feeling it is their fault. Not much to be said about it. My fear is that some day I will be the one saying the same thing to my sons. Loved the story about the fire truck. I see where you get your "spark" and your survivalist mentality. Celebrate her life!

Sent by JLmoyer | 8:38 AM | 3-24-2008

I am so sorry to learn of your Mom's passing this weekend. It is not easy, all this growing up, loosing our parents, our hair, struggling with our own health, memory loss and uncertain future. In reading your blog today, it is obvious you and your Mom shared a special relationship. May the wonderful memories and special times bring your comfort. And I hope those of us who follow along in your journey every single day can offer up peace and comfort....much like you all did for me last summer when I lost my Dad to cancer. Blessings and a gentle hug for you and Laurie today.

Sent by Karen | 8:40 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, my prayers and condolences are with you and your family. Your mother sounded like a spitfire and it seems we could all learn a little something by her zest for life. A trait she clearly passed down to you, and that is something she doesn't have to feel guilty about.

Sent by Tara Ingram-Eaton | 8:41 AM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry.

Sent by Stacy | 8:41 AM | 3-24-2008

"Tenacity" that is one of the wonderful gifts your Mom left you, that is obvious.
Leroy, I am so very sorry and I realize the emptiness and sadness you are feeling at this time. Thank you for sharing her with us, I had no idea that your family has been plaqued by this "Beast", as you call it. Now you MUST continue your fight because as my Mom so often told me, "You are an extension of me and I pass "my life to you to carry on. " That was in '87 and her presence never has left me, although there will always be this empty hole in my heart!
Such a sad time for you and your family Leroy

Sent by J C R | 8:44 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, thank you for sharing the stories about your Mom. I loved the details you included - I felt like I had actually been introduced to her. And now I share your grief for this wonderful woman. Sending prayers your way.

Sent by Dorothy | 8:50 AM | 3-24-2008

My deepest condolences, Leroy. Thank you for telling us about your mom.

Sent by Linda | 8:53 AM | 3-24-2008

A beautiful tribute to your mother.

Sent by Janis | 8:54 AM | 3-24-2008

Burning shoebox houses in the driveway! Sounds like heaven just got a little funner!
Sorry for your loss and thank you for sharing a little bit of Mom with us.

Sent by Sue in Rochester | 8:58 AM | 3-24-2008

good morning Leroy. Oh my heart is aching for you today. It was just one year ago I lost my mother at the age of 93.It's always harder than you imagine to live life without Mom. She sounds like an angel. Your post about her is so endearing. Much love to you today. from Sherri in Texas

Sent by Sherri Eggleston | 8:58 AM | 3-24-2008

My condolences for your loss.
Cancer sucks.

Sent by Brit | 9:01 AM | 3-24-2008

Oh, Leroy. I am sorry for your loss, and sorry that your mother had the guilt she did about the colon cancer genetic legacy. She sounds a fearless and adventurous person, and a wonderful mother.

Do you have HNPCC? Lynch Syndrome? That's my husband's genetic lot, and it manifested as deadly, recurrent colon cancer for him (and he seems to be in a downward spirl right now), his brother (dead at 51), his mother (colon and ovarian, dead at 64), his aunt (dead at 72) and his uncle (dead at 71). We have not yet had our 14 year old daughter tested as I just couldn't face negative results right now.

Some day, please, some day they'll have a solution for HNPCC other than having most of your guts removed preventively. Sorry for the graphic image, but really it is a bear.

Sent by Teri | 9:02 AM | 3-24-2008

Here's to your Mom, Leroy. I never met her, but in your beautiful, few words, you introduced us to a wonderful woman. Your strength and kindness are a testament to what a great parent she was and is.

Sent by Mary Beth | 9:12 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy

I am so sorry for the loss of your mother. It made me smile and think what an awesome mom she was to let you put out fires with your fire truck! May all the good memories help you at this very sad time.

Sent by Judy Fuller in N.Va. | 9:12 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I am sorry for the loss of your Mother. But I am very glad that you shared this information with us. A beautiful tribute to your Mother. You will miss her but she will always be in your heart. Take care Leroy, stay strong.

Sent by dorothy in oregon | 9:15 AM | 3-24-2008

I am so sorry for the loss of your mother. Again, thank you for sharing such intimate moments of your life with us. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Sent by Janie | 9:18 AM | 3-24-2008

My sympathies to you and yours Leroy.

Reading your blog sounded like you were talking about yourself. You had a good mama.

God bless you Leroy. Life presents many challenges. Hopefully in these challenges we become closer to others and to God.

Take care,

Judy

Sent by Judy Voller | 9:23 AM | 3-24-2008

My condolences Leroy. Your mom sounds like a gem.

Sent by Kathy | 9:23 AM | 3-24-2008

I was sorry to hear about yoru mother. She must have been a wonderful person. She raised a wonderful son. Thank you.

Sent by Linda | 9:24 AM | 3-24-2008

I am so very sorry Leroy, for the loss of your mother, and for all that you are going through. My thoughts are with you.

Sent by Donna R. in NJ | 9:25 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy: My condolences on the loss of your mother. Our mothers are our first loves; when we lose them it leaves a hole that cannot be filled. Your tribute to your mother's strength and courage reminded me of my husband's courage. He lost his 9 1/2 year battle against cancer two months ago. Keep up the good fight. You are inspiring others to persevere.

Sent by Lenore Ort | 9:25 AM | 3-24-2008

Sending prayers out to you and for your Mother. I'm sure that she is very proud of you. So sorry for your loss.
I've lost both of my parents now and I know that feeling of suddenly being out there in the "front". Our parents always shelter,cushion, block and screen for us, no matter how old we are.
Now we're in the front for the ones that follow. She taught you by example to be a great leader.
Well done Mrs. Siever!

Sent by Deb | 9:27 AM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry for your loss, Leroy. What an interesting woman your mom was! Some people are just more truly alive than others.

Sent by jean | 9:30 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy, My deepest sympathy on the loss of you Mom. 83 ain't to shabby... like my father used to say "anything after 75 was gravy". Here's to a well lived life. Peace and healing...
Susan

Sent by Susan | 9:32 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I am sorry for your loss. She had to have been a wonderful person to have such a wonderful son. Thoughts and prayers are with you.

Sent by Julie | 9:33 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,
My thoughts are with you today. Hold onto those memories of your mom; she sounds as if she was a terrific person. I have my own memories of being in high school and skipping school with my own mom so we could go to the circus (I had never been) She died of cancer when I was 22, but I always remember that day, as we had so much fun.

Take good care,

Sent by Betsey | 9:35 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy - So saddened to hear of your loss... but lighting shoeboxes on fire! What a GREAT memory! Isn't that what's all about?

Sent by Tim | 9:38 AM | 3-24-2008

Peace to you and the rest of your family, Leroy.

Sent by J. Hester | 9:39 AM | 3-24-2008

"I think I probably learned how to fight this disease by watching her. What better gift could she have given me?" -- That speaks volumes, Leroy. And I think you're doing the same for many of us. Your mother's lessons continue.

Sent by Debbie Carlson | 9:40 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
Sorry for your loss. The death of a parent is never easy, no matter how elderly or ill they are. May warm and funny memories of her lighten your sorrow.

Sent by Janet in NC | 9:40 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your mother. Your tribute to her was wonderful.
By the sounds of it, she was a terrific mother. I lost my Dad this past August and losing a parent puts a hole in your heart that nothing or no one else can fill. Age doesn't matter.
Yet she was strong, and she passed that on to you. And you had a loving mother for so long. It never feels long enough once they are gone though, does it?
Blessings, Prayers, and May The Grace Of God Be With You.
Wanda Amorose

Sent by Wanda Amorose | 9:42 AM | 3-24-2008

I am so sorry Leroy. Thank you so much for the stories!! What a great mom!

Sent by Nancy Kelly | 9:44 AM | 3-24-2008

What a beautiful tribute to your mother. My condolences. My mother too blames herself for my cancer with her predisposition for cancer. Silly but I guess that is what good moms do.

Hugs...

Sent by Lori | 9:44 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, My condolences, I am sorry for your loss. Her strength obviously lives on in you. May your memories of her life and love sustain you at this difficult time. Sincerely,
Robin Solomon

Sent by Robin Solomon | 9:45 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,

I am sincerely sorry for your loss.

Sent by Brian Dowd | 9:45 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,
I am sorry to hear about your mom. It sounds like she was a great mom and you have wonderful memories of her. You will certainly miss her. I know that guilt. My daughter was 47 before the genetic bullet hit her. We thought she had missed it. I feel guilty that she and both my grandkids have the mutation. We did have wonderful news on Good Friday. Her first PET scan since she finished chemo was clear!!When we are young we want to "grow up". I think it is a hard transition when we become the "oldest" generation in the family.
May God comfort you.
Charlotte in Rural Ridge, PA

Sent by Charlotte Kewish | 9:46 AM | 3-24-2008

"Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, Love leaves a memory no one can steal."

Sorry about your mom.

Sent by Kathy Barney | 9:48 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I am so sorry to hear about your Mom. I am sure she gave you what has turned out to be your greatest gift - your fighting spirit. I know first hand what it is like to lose someone we love to the same disease we face ourselves - and it sucks. Please know that your Mom would insist on you taking good care of yourself in her absence, and would encourage you to spend as much time with those in your life who love you so much. Be very kind to yourself in this most difficult time.

Sent by Jeanette Carney | 9:49 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
Deepest sympathy. She must have been wonderful and lucky to have a son remember her so fondly. I love the fire engine story. God bless and grant you peace.

Sent by Miriam | 9:50 AM | 3-24-2008

Sorry for your loss, Leroy and for the losses expressed by your brave & loyal readers. I refused to tell my parents about my relatively innocuous thyroid cancer and my brother won't tell them about his recent protate cancer diagnosis.
Our eldest bro died of male breast cancer years ago and we refuse-- with regret & reservation-- to revisit the guilt ridden agony my parents experienced during that time.
Wish you & yours strength & peace.

Sent by Rose | 9:51 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I am so sorry about the loss of your mother.

Sent by Nancy Abbott | 9:52 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy:
Godspeed. Thank you for sharing about your Mother. I am so sorry, but you know yourself, where she is. I think she went ahead of you, which is for the best (for her). You will NOW also have her pulling for you from Heaven. Certainly doesn't hurt to have spirits up there "Praying (pulling)" for you.
What a GREAT WOMAN (MOTHER) she was!
Her work here was done. Your's is not.
Many Blessings and Prayers going up.
Much Love

Sent by Joanie, Front Royal, Va | 9:54 AM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry for your loss, Leroy. I know your mother is very proud of her tribute - thanks for sharing a little bit of her with us.

Always in my thoughts and prayers,

Sent by Amy in NJ | 9:56 AM | 3-24-2008

My thoughts and prayers are with you and yours on the loss of you mom.

Sent by Dannielle Higgins | 10:00 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy - In loving memory of your mother.

What Cancer Cannot Do

Cancer is so limited ....
It cannot cripple Love
It cannot shatter Hope
It cannot corrode Faith
It cannot destory Peace
It cannot kill Friendship
It cannot supress Memories
It cannot silence Courage
It cannot invade the Soul
It cannot steal eternal Life
It cannot conquer the Spirit
(author unknown)

So sorry to hear of your loss.
Joan Beth Smith

Sent by Joan Beth Smith | 10:00 AM | 3-24-2008

Sorry to hear about your loss.

Sent by Lisa | 10:04 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

my heart is with you this morning as you contemplate the beautiful life that was your mother's. I am so sorry for your loss and will be thinking about you. I thought your post was a wonderful tribute. with love, liz

Sent by liz | 10:05 AM | 3-24-2008

Oh Leroy, I am so sorry for your loss.

Sent by Linda | 10:09 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy
Thank you for sharing your thoughts about your mother. She was a very special lady and I am sure she was, and is, proud of you. I'm so sorry for your loss-it is hard to lose your Mom.

Sent by Tina | 10:09 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy
I am so very sorry you've lost your mom. That has to be the biggest blow of all. I am sure she was a remarkable woman to have raised a son like you. I am sorry she didn't "outlive" the beast.

Sent by Alycia Keating | 10:16 AM | 3-24-2008

My deepest sympathy, Leroy. Like so many others, I know what it is like to lose a dear and loving mother. No matter how old they are when they go. their passing leaves a huge hole in one's life.

Sent by Marilyn Trujillo | 10:16 AM | 3-24-2008

leroy, im so very sorry. Your mom sounds alot like mine. My mom would allow us cook with a wok at a very young age. Everyone thought she was nuts and that we would "catch on fire" or something. our prayers will continue for your family. God Speed. sarah

Sent by sarah | 10:16 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy and Laurie, My prayers, condolences, and sympathies go out to you and your family....

Sent by Laurie Hirth | 10:17 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, Please accept my condolences on the passing of your mother. From what you've shared, your mother was a fantastic role model for you. I can see where you got your sense of adventure and playfulness from, as well as your courage.

Sent by Marilyn | 10:19 AM | 3-24-2008

Thank you for sharing a tiny bit of "Leroy's Mom" with us. It made me laugh to read about her making paper houses, setting them alight, and letting you douse them! May she rest in peace and light.

Sent by M Wms | 10:23 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I am very sorry for your loss. I lost my Dad 2 years ago to colon cancer and it was a very hard time. But try to draw strength from knowing that your Mom would want you to go on and fight this fight for you and her. God Bless you and your family.

Sent by Teresa in WV | 10:23 AM | 3-24-2008

My mom worried, too, that her legacy to me was a cruddy genetic makeup that allowed this disease to take hold in both of us.

I had to point out that my genetic makeup allowed me a whole lot more than just cancer, and my gratitude to her for all I had dominated my life.

I'm so sorry you lost you mom right now, Leroy...she seems to have been a wonderful woman and mother.

Peace
jj

Sent by Joan Jones | 10:26 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy...so sorry to hear about the loss of your mom, love. She sounds like a wonderful woman and I know you will miss her...thanks for sharing...

Hugs and kisses...

Sent by Faun | 10:30 AM | 3-24-2008

Sorry to hear about your mom. She sounded like a lovely person! You and your family will remain in my prayers.

Rita

Sent by RR | 10:34 AM | 3-24-2008

Good Morning Leroy, Laurie and All,

Leroy, Your beautiful words written this morning about your Mom is a wonderful tribute to her and a gift to all of us! I cried as I read it. She was a wonderful Mom and now she is one of God's best angels!! I know that you will miss her, but Leroy, she lives on in you.

Laurie, I know that your heart is heavy. Please know that you, Leroy and all of Leroy's friends and family members are in our thoughts and prayers

To All, As we join Leroy and Laurie in their time of sorrow, let us all renew our own determination to continue the battle. Someday we are going to WIN!! God Bless!

Eileen Pruyne
Charlotte, NC

Sent by Eileen Pruyne | 10:36 AM | 3-24-2008

So, so sorry for your loss, Leroy. A big "cyberhug" coming your way.

Sent by Linnea | 10:36 AM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry for your loss. Well, you'll have to take on your mom's challenge and outlive your grandmother!

Sent by Geoff | 10:42 AM | 3-24-2008

She sounded like a wonderful mother and friend. I am very sorry for your loss, but it sounds as though the memories are filled with fun. They will always be with you.

Sent by Wendy | 11:00 AM | 3-24-2008

I am so sorry for the loss of your Mom. My thoughts and prayers will be with you during this difficult time. It is the memories, the tributes, the words we write that can keep our beating hearts warmed until we all meet again.

Sent by debbie | 11:03 AM | 3-24-2008

Your Mum will stay with me for a long time thinking of you two in the driveway putting out fires. Such a sweetheart to worry about us thinking she was a bad mom. Blessings on you both. How you can come up with such loving stories that make me smile in the midst of suffering and loss is a gift. I am grateful for your stories and send you my condolences for the loss of your dear mother.

Sent by Marilee Kaufman | 11:06 AM | 3-24-2008

Eternal rest grant unto her dear Lord and let perpetual light shine upon her........may she rest in peace. My condolences to you Leroy and your family.

Sent by Sasha | 11:07 AM | 3-24-2008

What a great-hearted, vibrant spirit your mother is, and what a legacy she left in your life! I am thrilled you two had one another for so many rich years, and that you keep her forever in your heart. Thank you for sharing this personal news with the blog circle, Leroy. We celebrate your mother's life with you, and I am enjoying thinking of her spirit's next adventurous trajectory.

With much care for you and Laurie, and for your entire family,

Sent by Sarah | 11:09 AM | 3-24-2008

What a great mom you had. When you told the story of your Mom building shoe box houses, I immediately thought, "What a cool Mom. How creative! I want to be like her!" You conveyed what a wonderful, spirited person she was in only a few words. She sounds like she was amazing. What a sad loss for you. But what a great Mom you had! It is inspiring.

Sent by Michele Joseph | 11:10 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, with my deepest sympathy.

Sent by Roxi | 11:10 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy, I am so very sorry about the loss of your Mother. She was an example for you and to quote Geoff, right above me, now you have to outlive your Grandmother. Being a Rabbi's Wife and knowing how difficult it is to lose parents and/or children, this is how it should be - your Mom before you. Take care of you and fight even harder than you have been - she would want you to do that. Mothers are that way, you know! Take care and G-d Bless you and love to Laurie.

Jan

Sent by Janice Goldberg White | 11:11 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy.

Please accept my most heartfelt condolences on the loss your mother. She sounds like she was a cool mom, a wonderful role model, and a whole lot of fun to be with. Please be easy on yourself as you work through the grief and know that the best parts of her are within you.

You and Laurie remain in my thoughts and prayers.

Sent by Erica | 11:13 AM | 3-24-2008

My sincerely condolences to you and your family.

Sent by Tatiana | 11:18 AM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry. Cancer stole my mom and my dad. Years later, I miss them still. Be assured your mom is in a good place.

Sent by Carole | 11:21 AM | 3-24-2008

I'm sorry. Wish there were other words that would help.

Sent by Dave U. | 11:23 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
thank you so much for sharing the stories of your mom. Of course she felt guilty, that is what mom's do. I remember something Roger Wilkins said. Life is a relay race. Your mom has handed you the torch.

Sent by Dianne (DC) | 11:25 AM | 3-24-2008

I am sorry for the loss of your Mom. I know how hard that loss is, and hope that you continue to recall all the wonderful memories about her as each day passes. She obviously gave you a great deal of strength and determination, and that surely aids you in your fight against cancer.

Sent by Kate | 11:27 AM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry about your Mother. As a Mother, I understand her guilt about giving you cancer. I worry about my daughter and her magnificent ta-ta's, wondering if she too will succumb to this disease. I love the story about her building houses so you could put them out. I thought "what a great Mom!" I wish I would have thought of that for my little pyromaniac - appropriate channeling, you know?
Keep up the good fight!
Anita

Sent by Anita Apodaca | 11:30 AM | 3-24-2008

I'm sorry for your loss.

Sent by Sandra Yudilevich | 11:30 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I am sorry for your loss and I am very glad you decided to write about your Mom today it sounds like she was a remarkable woman.
Peace,

Sent by Julie | 11:35 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,

So sorry to learn about your mom's death. God, the stuff is really all over the place, isn't it? I, too, have a family predisposition to colon cancer and those dear souls who went before me have given me the gift of alertness. Being a mom myself, I know about guilt re:children. I have come to believe that all mothers feel it, justified or not.

May flights of angels sing her to her rest.

Blessings.

Sent by Diana Kitch | 11:36 AM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry. I wish I had something profound or healing to say but I always seem to fall mute in the face of such loss.

Be sure to take care of yourself during this time. You are her living memory.

Sent by K Ives | 11:54 AM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
Sorry to hear of this loss. As the mom of a 7 year old boy, I read the part about the fire engine and thought "she WAS a cool mom". I think it helps to celebrate the good things about the person.

Sent by LindaK | 11:56 AM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

Thanks for your willingness in sharing your news with us. For those of us that have been through what you're now going through, it's impossible to describe to those that haven't. The one thing I do know, which has taken me years though realization that ultimately leads to experience, is that their Love never leaves us. We just have to allow our broken hearts to heal in order for the their love for us to be felt in the present. Sincerest condolences to you, Leroy.

Sent by sheron | 12:00 PM | 3-24-2008

God rest her soul - and bring you peace and comfort at this time of grief. We are upholding you in prayer and good wishes, CHD

Sent by C Duckett | 12:04 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I am so sorry for the loss of your mother.

Sent by Kay | 12:07 PM | 3-24-2008

What sad news. I'm so sorry. I still miss my mom who died two years ago. But I feel so lucky that she was such a GREAT mother, as yours was. She must have been very proud of you. I love the story about the fire truck.Clearly, she supported and encouraged your adventurous spirit.May your sadness be tempered by all the good memories of times shared with her.

Sent by Doris | 12:08 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I was very sorry to hear about your Mother's death. I didn't realize she was also fighting the battle against cancer. It is obvious that her stength has been passed on. We all honor her life and offer our deepest sympathy.
Sid

Sent by Sid Frede | 12:09 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

I am so sorry for the loss of your mom. She sounds like she was a great mom. Please know that you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers,

Lianne

Sent by Lianne Friedman | 12:14 PM | 3-24-2008

Oh Leroy,
I am so sorry. Cancer seems to be overwhelming, everywhere. Hope for spring and renewal

Sent by cv | 12:17 PM | 3-24-2008

My condolences on your loss, Leroy. I lost my mother 8 years ago to cancer, 8 days after her 60th birthday. I know, too, that she would have felt guilty for passing me "bad genes", as I deal with my own breast cancer today, 18 months after diagnosis. And I'm struggling today dealing with life myself. So thanks for sharing happy memories.

Sent by Michelle | 12:18 PM | 3-24-2008

Actually she is the originator of this "cancer family blog" and not to write about her life would be impossible. She gave you life and leadership. Now, your goal should be the same as hers! You have a long way to go to beat "almost 84"! God bless her.

Sent by Lucy Groh | 12:19 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,

I'm so sorry for your loss. You were blessed to have such a wonderful mother and I'm sure she is still cheering for you to keep fighting.

Bob

Sent by Bob | 12:21 PM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry to hear about your Mother's death. She sounded like a wonderful woman and great Mother - how lucky she was to have such a wonderful son! My thoughts and prayers are you with and Laurie.

Sent by Kathleen | 12:22 PM | 3-24-2008

So sorry Leroy, but so grateful, too. Your mother raised a wonderful son and person in you, and we get to share in her success.

Sent by tim in Rochester | 12:39 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I'm sorry for the loss of your mom. She sounds great and I'm sure you will miss her. I'm sorry you have yet another sad thing to deal with. I wish there was a truck that could put out the pain for awhile for you and your family!

Sent by keri | 12:42 PM | 3-24-2008

I'm sorry to learn of your loss. My mother passed away at 83 last year. It was a lot tougher dealing with it than I thought it would be. I still miss her a lot. She was a good woman, a very intelligent woman with an interesting and wonderful life.

I'm certainly glad you talked a bit about your mom. She sounds a lot like my mom.

Sent by Scott S. | 12:44 PM | 3-24-2008

Your mother is watching over you, Leroy, now and forever. I truly believe this - I know my parents, both now passed on, surround me with their love and concern, still. As crazy as it might sound, talk to her, tell her you still love her, share your fears and your joys with her. She is there for you. Wendy

Sent by Wendy | 12:47 PM | 3-24-2008

I to have lost my mother who battled cancer, it hurts, its been 4 years but not a day that goes by I don't think about her,and miss her, but remember to cherish the memories and what she taught you about your fight...I am truly sorry...

Sent by Leslie | 12:51 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, Saying I am sorry just does not seem to be enough. I have experienced this kind of loss and there are no words to reflect the loss you feel. A very sad day. Stan

Sent by Stan Wozniak | 1:04 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy - I usually just lurk here trying to soak in wisdom from you and many others, but today I have to write and tell you how sorry I am about your mom's passing. Your entry about her is beautiful and surely makes her smile somewhere - as does your perseverance and your triumphant spirit. Wishing you and your family peace.

Sent by Jessica | 1:12 PM | 3-24-2008

Any mom that would set little houses on fire for her son to put out is a way cool mom. She sounds like she was a neat lady. I am so sorry for your loss.

Sent by Marcia Greer | 1:12 PM | 3-24-2008

Oh no, I am so sorry. She must have been so very proud of you.

Sent by Nichole | 1:13 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

My deepest sympathy for the loss of you Mother. She sounds like a wonderful person. Keep her and the good times alive in your memory and let go of the suffering; she would want it that way. Sincerely,
Kandy

Sent by Kendra Falvey | 1:13 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I'm sorry for the loss of your Mother. Thank you for dicusing to include this in your blog and sharing her life with us. I love the story about the shoe box houses!

Sent by Jeff | 1:14 PM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry for your loss, Leroy.
I'm sure your mother is still with you, guiding you on your journey.

Sent by Jenn | 1:25 PM | 3-24-2008

Lero,

I am sorry for your loss. What a marvelous woman to have taught you so much. And what a marvelous son you are to have paid this lovely tribute to her.

My mother died four years ago from bronchiole aveolar carcimona. Reading your entry, I thought of my own mom, her valliant fight and unsupressable will to live. Our moms are a testement as to how live should be lied, with style and grace and dignity. I hope I make her proud. I know you made your mom proud.

Sent by Teri Thomas | 1:26 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy: My sincere condolences on the loss of your precious Mama. Thank you so much for sharing your love for her with us.

Sent by Robert Sheehan | 1:30 PM | 3-24-2008

I am sending my heartfelt sympathies to you and your family, Leroy. Thank you for sharing this news and know that I will always be praying fervently for you.

Sent by Ed Brown | 1:34 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
May there be more joy than sorrow in your thoughts of your Mom as the days go by. She was dearly loved and you will miss her. How hard it is to lose these precious treasures in our families. Hold fast to HOPE!
Your friend,

Sent by bethann | 1:34 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, as a woman who has raised 7 children,some of my fondest memories are the ones that were unconventional, like the time I started a food fight with my children. You are blessed with a Mom that loves you very much. If only my relationship with my own Mother could have been so good. Keep on fighting; live up to her example.

Sent by Leah | 1:49 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy-
Maybe I came to the blog too late, but I did not know about your Mother. It's devastating. I am so sorry to hear this.

As we say in the Russian Orthodox church, "Vechnaya Pamyat'" (Memory Eternal!)

Sent by Elizabeth from Brooklyn | 1:51 PM | 3-24-2008

I'm so sorry for your loss. I like your story of your mother coming to your annual Halloween party dressed as Leroy's Mom. Her love for you, her son, sounds unwavering.

Sent by Ann | 1:53 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy-
I am so sorry for the loss of your mom. Big hugs to you!!

Sent by Ellen | 1:54 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy -
May your mom's spirit continue to exist around you, in you and through you. Thank you for sharing TWO beautiful souls with us today.

Sent by Patte | 2:00 PM | 3-24-2008

i offered a prayer for you and Mom already. It broke my heart to hear that Mom felt guilty for passing the cancer gene to you. But she should be proud of producing such a fine son to show us how to fight cancer. i will not stop praying for you.

Sent by helen | 2:04 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

My most sincere condolences in the loss of your mother. What a wonderful woman she was and is. God Bless you all.

Sent by Connie | 2:07 PM | 3-24-2008

I am so sorry about the loss of your mother. Please know that she as well as the rest of your family & friends are in my prayers today.
The story about the fire engine was priceless and it made me smile! It is memory you will always cherish. She sounds like a neat mom.

Sent by Kimberly | 2:09 PM | 3-24-2008

I am happy that you had such a wonderful Mom!! My Jesus wrap His arms around her as He welcomes her to Heaven...Sue

Sent by sue | 2:11 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

I cried when I read that your Mom died. I laughed aloud when I thought of her letting you burn shoe box houses with your watered up fire truck. What a super special woman and Mom she must have been!

Sent by Sandi in Phoenix | 2:13 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I am so sorry for the loss of your Mother. I, too, lost my Mom to cancer when she was 55 and that was 9 years ago. I still think of her countless times a day. I used to be (and probably still can be at times) jealous of those who still have their Mom's or whose Mother's lived far longer than mine but I am older now that I was back then (24 at the time of her death) and I now know that no matter how old one is it is always unbelievably dificult to lose your Mom. But your memories of her, and your life experiences together will continue to live on through you and all whose lives she touched.
My prayers are with you and your family.

Sent by S A | 2:15 PM | 3-24-2008

I'm sorry sorry to learn that your mother has died, Leroy. It sounds as if her spirit for the zest of living was one of her greatest gifts to you. I hope fond memories will, in time, bring you comfort.

Sent by Molly | 2:17 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I am so sorry to hear about your mom. I am sure she is watching over you.

Sent by Jenene K. AZ | 2:21 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, My heart goes out to you and your family. Losing a parent is one of the worst things to happen in a persons lifetime. You must continue to fight, if not for yourself, but also for your mom -- again, my deepest sympathies and my prayers are with you and your family. God bless you.

Sent by elaine b | 2:23 PM | 3-24-2008

Thank you, Leroy, for your remembrance of your motherl Your words moderate the sadness of loss with the wonderful fire engine story. Each day I read your post showing your courage and bravery in facing another day. It is a gift. Thank you.

Sent by Gay H. McCormick | 2:25 PM | 3-24-2008

So sorry Leroy. Now, go outside with a hose and put some more fires out!

Sent by sandy | 2:25 PM | 3-24-2008

Sorry to hear about your mother - you are in my thoughts. I LOVE that she let you play with fire - she sounds like she was a great mother and she left you with wonderful memories.

Sent by Jane | 2:27 PM | 3-24-2008

Blessings for your Mother, Leroy - my condolences to you and your family.

Sent by Dorothy - Los Angeles | 2:29 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I am very sorry to read of your mother's death. There is a wonderful book "Tear Soup," that I highly recommend to anyone who has loss in their life. It's such a beautiful book for all ages. The comments today are such a blessing.

Sent by N. Holmes | 2:41 PM | 3-24-2008

Please accept my sincere condolences.

Sent by Chandana | 2:49 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I'm so sorry to hear about your mom. I just wrote for the first time about a week ago, but I first started reading your blog because my mom died in late 2005 from cancer at the age of 75. I know my mom would have benefited from this blog (not that I wish you had reason to start it sooner). I remember everyone saying to me that "my mom had a good, long life" so I shouldn't be sad. But those people don't understand that even knowing that does not take away the pain of missing her every day. Someone wrote to me that "she is and will keep on loving you just as she always has" and that brings me comfort. Hope it brings you comfort as well. You are way too young to be struggling with cancer yourself and now this. You and your family remain in my thoughts and prayers.

Sent by Teresa from Missouri | 2:51 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I truly am sorry that your Mom has passed on.
My thoughts & prayers are with you and your family during this very sad and difficult time.

Sent by lisa | 3:02 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
My sympathies for the loss of your mother. Your warm description says a lot about your relationship. I'll bet she was very proud of you. She gave you a lot more important traits than an uncertain genetic marker and which are still serving you well. Isn't it just like a mom to be more worried for you than for herself?

Sent by Gene Koeneman | 3:04 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I am so sorry about your mother but you have many wonderful memories it would seem. I love the fire story.

Sent by kathie | 3:38 PM | 3-24-2008

My Sincerest Condolences.

I too lost my mother in the last couple weeks to cancer. And I too, have cancer (advanced prostate, age 45). The last year for me has been a journey that no one should have to travel. Yet here is yourself. My understanding is that losing someone so close, emptiness never completely goes away. But it is supposed to get better. I pray everyday for that. I will add you to those prayers. May you find peace, as your mother already has.

Sent by Tony Crispino | 3:43 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,
A great soul serves everyone. A great soul never dies. It brings us together again and again. Still with you are so many memories to help you through every tomorrow. Still with you are so many people who share in your loss and your sorrow. With heartfelt sympathy, Antoinette Comprelli, NJ

Sent by antoinette comprelli | 3:45 PM | 3-24-2008

My thoughts are with you. Oh how blessed you have been to have had your mom with you. A new star will be added to our universe.

Sent by anne lumberger | 3:46 PM | 3-24-2008

My sympathies are with you in the loss of your Mother, Leroy. Until today, I didn't realize that she too was fighting this fight.

As a Mom myself, I can understand her concern for you rather than herself. She fought the good fight!

Praying for you and yours.

Sent by Vicky (NY) | 3:55 PM | 3-24-2008

I am so sorry for the loss of your mother. It is painful to lose someone you love. Noone knows if she passed cancer genes on to you but we do know she gave you life, the greatest gift of all. Please know you are in my thoughts and prayers.

Sent by carol | 3:56 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

You told us just enough about your mom to let us know how dear she is to you. I'm sorry for your loss but grateful that you had her and her courage for these all too short years. We'd love to hear more stories about her; the story of burning buildings in the driveway is a classic! Is your back strong enough for hugs yet?? I hope so.

Sent by Eleanor | 4:02 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

I am very sorry for your loss. It's hard when we lose the ones we love. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your entire family.

Sent by Kristin | 4:32 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy, I remember your mother from our grammar school days and I am very sad to hear of her passing. What a neat woman!
Your story about the firetruck and her concern about her percieved mothering skills made me burst out laughing. It trancends everything. Thanks for sharing it with all of us in the blogosphere.
Laurie Volk

Sent by Laurie Volk | 4:51 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I am very sorry to read about your loss. Thank you for sharing those wonderful memories of your mother with us. I agree she gave you a great gift by modeling how to fight cancer.

Sent by N.R. | 5:02 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,

Thank you for sharing the news about your mother. I am so sorry for your loss and the pain that you and your mother must have experienced in dealing with cancer simultaneously. Your mother sounds like a special person.

Sent by Joan | 5:06 PM | 3-24-2008

My deepest sympathy for the loss of your Mother. Things were different back in our day. Kids could be kids and our parents let us be kids without the worry of someone else calling them "bad parents". I am glad you experienced such a fantastic Mom. Stay strong and know that all of us Readers send you thoughts and prayers!

Sent by Amy Jenkins | 5:06 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

Like everyone else, I'm so sorry to hear about your mom. My thoughts also are with you and yours right now.

You must really trust us, your online "family", to share the experience of losing her.

Thank you.

Sent by Janice J. , Los Angeles | 5:10 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy- I hope your mother can read your tribute to her. It is amazing how your few words told us so so much about her. What a wonderful fun Mom- I am sorry for your loss.

Sent by linda | 5:22 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I'm so sorry for your loss. Your mother sounds like an extraordinary person. You, by being an extraordinary person in your own right, honor her every day. My prayers are with you.

Sent by Lisa | 5:26 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy and family -

My thoughts and prayers are with you at this most difficult time. There are no words for me to say that have not already been said.

Sent by Deb from Michigan | 5:28 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,
I'm so sorry for your loss. My own mother is 86 so I know what it's like to always have her there. She leaves you with a lifetime of memories. With deepest sympathies,

Sent by Paulette | 5:30 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

I am so sorry about your Mom. She sounded like a wonderful lady. Please accept our heartfelt condolences.
You are in our prayers.

The Ellis Family

Sent by Tina Ellis | 5:36 PM | 3-24-2008

Hello Leroy,
I remember when my mom died at 83, my sister turned to me and said, Sharon, we're orphans now. We were both in our 40's, and you know, I truly felt orphaned. The loss of a mother, for most of us, is very difficult, and unlike other losses we experience. But having lost Grace to cancer, I chose to believe that she went on to a gentler place where there was no pain, and that gave me solace. My sympathy, Leroy, you're in my thoughts daily.

Sent by Sharon | 5:39 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, now I know where you get your sense of adventure! Love the story about the blazing shoe boxes, what a great mom and a great tribute to her.

Sent by Pat Z. | 5:41 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy:
Leroy:

I just wanted to send you a big hug, your words describing your mother were beautiful, and she was an amazing mother and human being.. the firetruck story is awesome, and she let you think and play 'out of the box' which is refreshing, especially in today's day and age of cookie cutter kids and um.. parents.

Keep fighting,
Krupali

Sent by Krupali Tejura MD | 5:50 PM | 3-24-2008

I AM REALLY GLAD YOU TOLD US. I KNOW YOU WILL MISS HER BUT SHE MEANT SO MUCH TO YOU AND I AM SURE SHE GAVE YOU A LOT OF COURAGE. REMEMBR SHE IS IN A MUCH BETTER PLACE THAN WE ARE. SHE WILL NOT HURT ANYMORE. GOD BLESS YOU.

Sent by MAVIS | 6:22 PM | 3-24-2008

May I also add my condolences on the loss of your mother. It is always wonderful to have terrific memories, it seems to bring them back if only for a little while.

Sent by Natalie | 6:31 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,

What a beautiful tribute to your mom. I am so sorry for your loss. If your mom was so cool to build you houses that you could 'put out' with your new truck then you must have too many fond memories to count. She sounded like one heck of a mom!

Sent by Cindee | 6:40 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy---No matter what your age...it is very hard to lose a parent. I remember I felt a little like an orphan after both of mine died, and I was a full grown mature adult. Try to thank God for the many beautiful memories and the time you shared together -- I am so very sorry for your loss. Good to know she feels no pain nor sorrow now. You have another "angel" watching over you.

Sent by Jo Ann Baswell-Margate, FL | 6:54 PM | 3-24-2008

My sympathy to you and your family, Leroy.

Thank you also, Leroy, for letting us know. We are your friends and we care even though we only know you and each other through the blogs and comments. Thank you also for allowing a small verbal look at the person she was in life. She was a precious soul, a strong women and a fighter in life and did indeed endure to the end and did it well.

Your description of your mother brought a smile to my face. She sounds like she was an awesome mother, too. She was smart and creative. The shoebox house fire-fighting safely done in the driveway probably taught you to think safety without you realizing it. Also, some of the best mothers always find something to feel guilty for if their child, no matter how old, has problems or health issues. That seems to be part of the job description.

We also now know where your strength of mind and will to live and fight cancer and live life to the fullest came from. You had the best examples anyone could ask for in your mother and grandmother. Their genetics may have had the weakness toward cancer, but they also passed along the building blocks for a strong body that allows you to go on fighting cancer as they did.

I grieve with you, Leroy, and your family, for the loss of a special woman.

Sincerely,
Bobbie in Texas

Sent by Bobbie Hollis | 7:04 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy and Laurie: I am sorry about the sad news of Leroy's mother. Remember...love never dies.

Sent by Judy | 7:06 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear friend:
My heartfelt sympathy.
It was a beautifully written tribute.

Sent by Harriet | 7:30 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy:
I am so sorry that you have lost your Mom. Mom's are irreplacable and sounds like you had a special one. May happy memories sustain you and your family during this difficult time of loss and grief.
Fran

Sent by Fran | 7:48 PM | 3-24-2008

Hi Leroy,
My deepest sympathy to you and your family; my own Mom died recently and I understand why you wanted to remember her in your blog. I loved the story you told about the fire engine. Keep those good thoughts of her close to your heart.

Sent by Dee | 7:49 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,
Your Mother must have been a joy to know and to love. May you keep her love close and know that you are loved. You and Laurie will be in my heart!
Jude

Sent by Judith Tynan | 8:10 PM | 3-24-2008

I will keep you in my heart and you will be in my prayers as you always are. I can imagine what a great help and support to you your mom was, as mine is, in this battle with cancer. I know you will miss her and I am so sorry for your loss.

Sent by Andi Daschbach | 8:27 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

I lost my mother last month to Pancreatic Cancer. I don't think it matters what age our mothers die, their death is just so painful and come too soon. My prayers are with you and your family.

Take care - Jennifer
www.knitforknot.blogspot.com

Sent by Jennifer from MS | 8:27 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,

Mom's can never be replaced, only remembered with much love and pride. So sorry..

Sent by Jane from Arkansas | 8:30 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, So much for one soul to bare.With all you are going through right now, coupled with losing "Mom",you are an incredibly strong person. Take the time to heal and find comfort in the flood of memories.
Peace be with you and Mom

Sent by Pam | 8:40 PM | 3-24-2008

Aw, Leroy, I'm sorry. Sounds like your mom taught you how to fight put out fires of every kind.

Sent by Susan | 8:46 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy; My most sincere and loving condolences and prayers will be with you in the coming days.
Shalom...
May God bless and comfort you...

Sent by Denise from Ohio | 8:47 PM | 3-24-2008

How proud you must be of her, that she was the kind of mom that went with her instincts rather than the social norms. That she could lead as an example of sorts for you in your own life and in this horrible thing we call cancer. How proud she must be that you turned out so well, that you felt the life lessons she was trying to place within you and take root. How wonderful to have that satisfaction as a mom. I dont know exactly how things work in Heaven, but maybe her smiles will send the rays that will help those roots grow and strengthen whatever you need in the days ahead. What a wonderful mother-son relationship! Hugs and prayers to you and Laurie.

Sent by Cindi | 8:53 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy - so sorry to hear of your mom's passing. From the sounds of it, you have a wonderful guardian angel watching over you now.

Sent by Marie | 9:08 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

I am so very sorry about the loss of your mother. Sue

Sent by Sue Perdew | 9:12 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,
I am very sorry about the loss of your Mom. She sounds like a wonderful, fun person. Thank you for sharing the memory of putting out fires in the driveway. It's very hard to lose a Mother. You are lucky to have had her for as long as you have. I hope those memories and all of the love you shared bring comfort to you. Thoughts and prayers are with you, Laurie, and your family.

Sent by Lilly T. | 9:30 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
As a Mom, I salute your Mom for lighting shoebox houses for you to put out. Every kid deserves to have great fond childhood memories. You were lucky to have her while she lived and lucky to have her memories now that she is gone. I'm sad for you losing her. Only time can heal that wound. Thanks for sharing with us.

Sent by Tone Marconi | 9:41 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I'm sorry to learn of the passing of your mother this weekend. She sounded like an incredible mom. My all your memories with her live in your heart forever. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Sent by Cindi | 9:54 PM | 3-24-2008

Dear Leroy,

I am sorry you've lost your mother. It must be especially hard to lose her to cancer. But I'm sure she was more worried for you than for herself. I loved the 'shoeboxes on fire' story. I am going to try that with my grandson someday, in memory of your creative and loving mom. Have a good night.

pat

Sent by patricia benson | 10:30 PM | 3-24-2008

Thank you for telling us about your Mom. My thoughts and prayers are with you. It is all so hard sometimes. I'm certain she is sending you strength to continue on with your fight. Peace to you my friend during this very sad time. Holly

Sent by Holly Gaenzle | 10:41 PM | 3-24-2008

Oh, Leroy, I am so sorry for your loss. It sounds like your mother was a very special woman!
Sincerely,
Judith

Sent by Judith Newkirk | 10:48 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, please know I'm thinking about you, and about your mom. She sounds like she was "a hoot" as some of us say. A strong person -- had some grim strength -- had some humor -- loved that son, Leroy -- was much loved.

You were, and are, a good son. She loved you greatly. You love her. What more can anyone ask for, or get?

Sent by Victoria Ferreira | 10:57 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I'm so so sorry to hear about your mother's passing. Thinking and praying about you both...

Sent by Jen Pearl | 11:00 PM | 3-24-2008

Oh Leroy...Thank you for sharing a bit of your mama June with us. Keep speaking with her, your connection will endure.

Many blessings and prayers for you at this time of loss.

Sent by Joan S. | 11:09 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy ~
My thoughts are with you! Your Mother sounds like an amazing woman. I am certain she was very proud of you! Hold tight to your love and your memories!

Sent by Maria | 11:41 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy,
I'm so sorry for your loss......She is a testiment of your strenght and endurance. Keep fighting the good fight.

Sent by Mike | 11:52 PM | 3-24-2008

Leroy, I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. As always, you are in my prayers.

Sent by Susan | 12:17 AM | 3-25-2008

Dear Leroy,
I'm so sorry about your loss. No matter how old we are we are never ready to lose our mother. I was 20 when my mother died, she was just 58. I still miss her.
Peace and al good. Keep up the fight.

Sent by Robert G | 12:24 AM | 3-25-2008

That's the thing about moms. We always think we're responsible for everything. I guess so often we are. It sounds like your mom had a lot to do with your being tough and caring and having a sense of adventure and fun. I'll always remember your fire engine story. I absolutely love that.
I'm glad that you have the comfort of wonderful memories. Sharing these with us is one more precious gift from you to us. Thank you, Leroy. Once again, I'll pray for you tonight.

Sent by Laura | 1:28 AM | 3-25-2008

I'm sorry that you lost your mother. Thank you for sharing stories about her. Clearly she was a courageous and loving woman who brought light to the world.

Sent by Steve Brown | 2:34 AM | 3-25-2008

Dear Leroy,
My condolences...
No matter how much we expect death-it's still a shock when it happens to someone who is a part of us. We're all connected. Your mother sounds like a great person-what a great tribute to her life and thanks for sharing with us. She must have been incredibly proud of you. In fact I believe she is all around you. Remembering her is healing. And..I still like my new saying "Feeling is Healing"

Sent by Linda | 3:29 AM | 3-25-2008

Dear Leroy,

I am also very sorry for your loss.

You never get over losing your mother. It's been 6 years since my Mom died of cancer and I still wish I could ask her a million things.

Be well.
L

Sent by Liz L. | 3:43 AM | 3-25-2008

My condolences to you by a Catholic priest from Majorca (Spain). Thank you for sharing your life and illness with us. I work in a hospital and I've learned a lot from you. Love, Josep Adrover

Sent by Josep Adrover | 4:30 AM | 3-25-2008

May loving memories of your mother surround you and your family during this difficult time. She sounded like quite a fighter.

Sent by Rocco | 7:09 AM | 3-25-2008

Condolences for you and your family, Leroy. I will pray for you during this painful time. God bless.

Sent by Adam | 9:29 AM | 3-25-2008

Dear Leroy: Thank you so much for telling us about your mom's life, and her death. Clearly she was a wonderful woman, and she was lucky to have you as a son. Having lost both my parents to cancer (Mom when i was 25, Dad when i was 46), I know that it's very hard to lose a parent, even when you're supposed to be a "grownup" yourself.

Thank you again for making the decision to share her story with us. You and your family are in my thoughts.

Sent by Suzanne in Houston | 10:03 AM | 3-25-2008

Loosing our parents is never easy. Dad to cancer,Mom to Parkinson's and both before their time. Or was it? Leroy,I learn many lessons from you. Taking things in stride when life hands you an horrid illness has been most of my adult life, yet cancer is different-as you point out so well, it is scary but it is life and one worth living. My cancer motivates me not to let anyone else have it if I can prevent it. It also lets me know that this is God's day and let's see where it goes from here...Lots and lots of us follow your lead. Thank you. I,too am sorry for your loss. I know your Mom supported you in so many ways.

Sent by Jo-Ellen | 10:16 AM | 3-25-2008

Leroy and family,

Words of my own fail me to express my condolence on your mother's passing. So I'll just share a few words from a hymn by Shelley Jackson Denham that was sung at my wife's funeral. It starts "We laugh, we cry, we live, we die". The chorus goes on to say "...And we believe in life, and in the strength of love; and we have found a need to be together. We have our hearts to give, we have our thoughts to receive, and we believe that sharing is an answer".

Peace,
Jon

Sent by Jon Manchester | 10:45 AM | 3-25-2008

Leroy, I am so very sorry for your loss. Your mom sounded like a very cool lady.
Sounds like she was the mom all the kids wished they had and I bet she was very, very proud of you. Passing on a sense of adventure and a sense of humor is what she really passed to you. Being a mom, I can understand her feeling responsible for genes because we blame ourselves for everything bad! It's just a mom thing. Sending you and yours comfort in this sad time.

Sent by NancyGM | 12:53 PM | 3-25-2008

Leroy, I'm so sorry to hear the news about your mom. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers

Sent by Joyce in FL | 2:39 PM | 3-25-2008

Dear Leroy,

I am so sorry for your loss. Your mom sounds like a wonderful person and a great deal of her clearly is a part of you. I lost my mom to breast, lung and brain cancer in 1978 and as the years go by, our family's 'loss' does so very often feel more like a marvelous recognition and celebration of what we had and have with her in our lives and now in our hearts - versus just a loss. For now, I send my best wishes to you and your family.

Sincerely, Brin

Sent by Brin | 2:48 PM | 3-25-2008

It sounds like you had a truly most wonderful mother. I love the story of the fire trucks and the little fires she let you put out, and then her worry lest someone view her as a bad mom. What a woman. What she gave you it sounds like is your absolutely amazing will to fight, and the energy with which you live as well as many other gifts that have helped you be who you are to us: an remarkable example of how to do this job of wading thru cancer.

I'm so sorry for your and your family's loss. No matter when our parents die, at what age they or we die, it's always a big loss.

Warm regards

Sent by Nancy Oliveri | 3:22 PM | 3-25-2008

Leroy -

I'm so sorry to hear about your mother. She sounds like a wonderful woman and you were very lucky to have had each other. As always, my thoughts and prayers are with you.

Sent by Jana Miller | 4:54 PM | 3-25-2008

Dear Leroy,

How lucky you are to have had someone who understood you enough to set fires in the driveway. That is my kind of mom! To me, that is a very loving thing to do. She was probably a terrific mother and you have all these wonderful memories. My condolences to you and your family for your loss.

Sent by Carolyn | 8:14 PM | 3-25-2008

Leroy, There's a certain emptiness that comes with losing a mother. I'm so sorry to hear about your loss. I'm sure she will continue to be with you while you fight your battle!

Sent by ehertzfeld | 8:43 PM | 3-25-2008

Leroy,
As one of my friend's said when I lost my mother, losing a mother is like losing your primordial connection to the universe. Our thoughts and prayers are with you as your grieve this loss.
Love
Elena & Aziz

Sent by elena turner | 9:25 PM | 3-25-2008

What a joy and honor it is to know you Leroy. Your mom would be proud of you for honoring her the way you did here.I suspect we have her to thank for all you are giving all of us now through your own struggles with cancer.

Love,

Graham.

Sent by Graham G. Hawks | 9:38 PM | 3-25-2008

Leroy: Thank you for paying tribute to your Mom in your blog. May God's healing grace touch you and all of your family.

Sent by Joe, Columbia MO | 9:27 AM | 3-26-2008

Hi Leroy,
I thought about you & your Mom today. I took my three kids (ages 10, 6 & 4) to see "Horton Hears a Who". It was a fun activity that wouldn't take too much out of me as I'm still going through chemo and am pretty exhausted. I sat there and thought about how much I want to be here for them. There are a thousand little things that I know how to do to make them happy & fulfilled. I want it to be ME to make their shoebox houses for them to set on fire. :)
So, I thought of you & your Mom today as I sat in the theatre and watched my kids watch the movie. I prayed that each little happy & wacky memory is being stored inside them, and I prayed that we will still have a long time to make many more. And I prayed for you & your Mom.

Sent by Elizabeth | 11:45 PM | 3-26-2008

Leroy,
It's too bad your mother worried that your story about her lighting the "play" houses on fire would make her look like a bad mother....as I read that about her, I laughed out loud, and thought "what a great woman!"
Cancer took first my mother's inner light, and then her life...but it has never, ever, taken the essence of her being from me. I realize on a an almost daily basis that I am the living embodiment of her...for good and bad. And tho I miss her at times, she is never that far away! She is always still there guiding me! I must say this came as a surprise to me! I guess we do live on through those we have touched deeply.
Thanks for your writing, it is always thought provoking.

Sent by Patricia Lobenberg, R,N, | 11:47 PM | 3-26-2008

What a beautiful tribute to a very special woman! I am sure that "being Leroy's Mom" was not only her best costume, it was her proudest achievement. It is so hard to lose a parent, whether it is sudden or not. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Sent by janet hardy | 12:06 PM | 3-27-2008

Your mom was great and she provided the greatest gift which is you. Cherish the memories. May the Lord's grace shine on you.

Sent by Hal | 1:34 PM | 3-27-2008

I was lucky to get to work with your Mom for the last 10 years. We both started working at the SO about the same time, she volunteering, me for money. I got to know her really well in the last 6 years while I was in detectives and now property. She was very special to me. I just lost my Mom last year to cancer so I do know how hard that is. Your Mom and my Mom were born a day apart in March and we used to go out and celebrate together the 3 of us. I will miss her also.

Sent by Penny Rau | 10:46 AM | 3-28-2008

My sincere sympathy to you on the loss of your mother.

Sent by Bernadine (from Bardstown KY) | 5:58 PM | 3-28-2008

Dear Leroy,

Losing one's mother is so hard. I am sorry. When my mother died (of cancer), I was 20. The following year, it helped me to write a poem, which I have now rewritten three times over the years, as perspectives changed. Across cultures, it also helped me, several years ago, and in surprising ways, to see the film version of Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club. If you have never seen it, you might consider it. Of course, you have already written a beautiful essay about your mother and shared it online. Missing her is a tribute. You and Laurie and all in your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

Sent by Juliet George | 9:47 PM | 3-28-2008

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