My Mother, Nancy M Stevens
12/17/40 - 11/29/00
In 1979, Nancy
faced a tragedy that very few of us will ever have to personally endure,
the loss of a child - in the death of her eldest daughter,
Understandably devastated, she refused to let tragedy dampen her spirit.
She rose to this ultimate challenge of carrying on by immersing herself in
her family and career.
In 1987 she faced a new challenge when she was diagnosed with breast
cancer. She began the first of several tenuous battles that unbeknownst
to her and all that knew her, would continue for several years. Her
ever-present inner strength again turned a disastrous situation into a
victory. She underwent surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatment
to reach a level of health that allowed her to continue to succeed as a
professional, a mother and a friend.
The cancer returned
again and again, and she went through chemotherapy
three more times with encouraging results. She refused to alter her
lifestyle and let the disease control her. She continued to work, shop
and travel with her friends and family even though she was often very much
under the weather, without hair and receiving treatment.
A very bright light shone on Nancy on July 31, 1991, when my sister, Tina,
delivered her first daughter, Taylor - her first grandchild. And soon
after, she was blessed with two more grandchildren, Jordan and Ryan. It
has often been observed by family and friends that these young
sunshine gave Nancy more fire than ever to face the challenges ahead.
But on October 2nd, 2000 she was diagnosed with one of the most aggressive
and worst types of Leukemia. More than just a shot across the bow, this
was a direct hit on her body, now weary from over twelve years of illness
and treatments. The very next day
she began a three-week long series of constant chemotherapy. At the end
of the therapy they found that the drugs had not stopped the disease. But
Nancy still wasn't ready to give up, and began a series of new and
experimental drugs. Unfortunately, these new drugs couldn't stop the
dreaded disease either. This left our
ever-persistent and death-cheating Nancy no choice but to leave this
Earth. With great honor and love, at 8:07 a.m. on November 29th,
surrounded by her family, she
took her last breath.
She will always
be remembered as a woman whose courage was heroically limitless and whose
love for her family...immeasurable.
It was with broken hearts and wonderful memories that we said good-bye to
our loving mother, a special friend.