I was with Annie on the day she was diagnosed with cancer and was honored to be with her on the day she died. Annie fought valiantly and endured tremendous suffering in an attempt to stay alive so she could raise her children. In typical Annie style after she was diagnosed with cancer she was preparing for the race of her life. Annie was about to run with the determination of a lion and endurance of a gazelle. Annie became our Lord’s iron woman. Annie encouraged everyone she loved to run with passion and so my friend Patty, Christine and I (non-runners) decided to run the half marathon for Annie/literacy. We prepared for 9 months waking every morning at 5am to meet 6 days a week. The day of the race Annie showed up with no preparation and decided to run. We were amazed as she had been undergoing yet another round of chemo and was very weak. Annie not only completed the race, she beat us all by almost an hour. Annie journeyed into a place where other people fled. Annie’s athletic prowess had conditioned her and disciplined her body, however Annie’s true strength was her faith. Annie’s used her suffering to become closer to Christ and she brought others along with her. Many times when Annie ran she would tell me who she was offering her suffering up for. Annie found solace and comfort in the love of others. On her road to Calvary Annie allowed many of us to be her Simon of Syrene, her Veronica and Mary of Magdala.
Never let us forget her footsteps which have left the indelible sign of the cross on the souls of all who knew her.
I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race.
I have kept the faith. 2Timothy 4:7
I love you and miss you my cherished friend.