I'd like to take a moment to honor someone very special to the world. Many of you bloggers may be familiar with Tina Downey, but for those of you who never got a chance to know her, she was a devoted member of the blogging community. Apart from being a member of the Insecure Writer's Support Group, and her own blog Life is Good, she was one of the team members in charge of the Blogging from A to Z Challenge.
I am beyond saddened to write that after many months of health struggles, Tina passed away Saturday, August 23rd.
I cannot say that I knew Tina well. In fact, I'd only just "met" her last week when I was asked to join the A to Z Team. But from the true emails we traded back and forth, I recognized immediately how special she was. I don't say this lightly, nor do I mean to evoke the cliched pathos used when someone of a mere passing acquaintance passes away. Rather, I think her emails demonstrate exactly what kind of person she was:
"I'm snarky, like to quote movies, stir the pot, and kick some ass when I feel things aren't going in the right direction. Feel free to talk back!"
She also took the time to say a personal hello to me, and went out of her way to assure us new recruits that though the challenge we were about to undertake would be immense, she would go out of her way to make it fun, and to see to it that we never felt alone. That alone would have won me over, but her sense of fun, her snarkiness, and her open generosity shone through like a beacon. I greatly regret that I was unable to correspond with her more before illness took her.
I pray for Tina and the family she left behind, and I hope that wherever she is, she's in a better place. She wrote of her love for sunflowers, so to honor her I thought I'd post one on my blog. I invite anyone who knew Tina or who lost someone they cared for to post a sunflower as well, or to just take a moment to honor her memory.
Rest in peace, Tina Downey. You sunny presence in the world will not be forgotten.