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FARAFARA Cure FA

In Memorium

 

Brenda Laurette Harrison

Brenda

December 26, 1951 - September 6, 2017

Brenda was was born in Columbus, Ohio. She grew up on our farm near Richwood, Ohio, She was active in 4-H and Essex United Methodist Church. She loved flowers and helped in the garden for as long as she was able. She was diagnosed with Freidreichs Ataxia in her early teens. Brenda attended North Union High School class of 1970. She then attended The Ohio State University in Marion. Brenda was one of the first students to live independently on The Ohio State University Campus, who used a wheelchair. Brenda acheived a Bachelor of Science in History at OSU. She was a devout BUCKEYE.

She was cared for in her Mother and Fathers home. Brenda outlived her original prognosis by 30 plus years, due to her Father and Mothers care. She always showed courage, compassion, and grace. She was kind and thoughtful to everyone. Brenda had her little dog Rose always by her side. Brenda was predeceased by her Mother Marylou Harrison in March 2007. Brenda is survived by her Father Robert Harrison, Richwood OH, sisters, Beth (Scott) Keith, of Kansas City MO., Marty (Lynne Kirby) Harrison, Powell OH, Barbara (Pat Gordon), Harrison, of Athens OH. Nephews: Drew Keith of Seoul Korea, Daniel Wasserman, Athens OH, Neice:Hanna (Keith) Sean Stephenson of Greely CO.

Loran Mackenzie Martin

Loran

January 15, 1987 - August 16, 2017

Written by Melissa Brunner, August 17, 2017...

My heart breaks along with the community of Burlington today as we learn of the passing of Loran Martin.

I met Loran through the Muscular Dystrophy Association and was immediately inspired by her desire to live and give. Honor her memory by being kind to those around you and finding joy in all you do.

Where to begin.

Many years ago, this breath of fresh air breezed into our MDA Telethon broadcast location. She might have been delivering a donation. I don't recall exactly. What I do remember is the bright smile, easy hug and infectious laugh.

As we spoke, she also admitted to a bit of anxiety and fear. Loran Martin had been diagnosed with Friedreich's Ataxia, and no one could exactly say what that would mean for her future. I'm sure Loran was upset with herself for letting a few tears slip out. She'd quickly brush them aside, the smile would return, and you could see the determination - the determination to live.

Friedreich's is a rare disease that attacks the muscular and nervous system causing problems that worsen over time. There is no cure.

But, it had never met Loran. We'd catch up each year at the telethon as Loran brought in her donations from her MDA golf tournament and the Coffey County Fill the Boot campaign (thousands and thousands of dollars over the years). She was so proud when she told me about the job she loved at the Burlington Recreation Center. In 2012 she invited WIBW to watch as community members came together to give her what any independent young woman would want - a home of her own! They built it just for her to accommodate her movement needs and the wheelchair she was using more frequently. Facebook has been a wonderful way to touch base and follow her smile as she lit up the world.

Today, that world is a bit dimmer. Loran passed away unexpectedly. Within hours her Facebook wall was flooded with messages from so many people who knew and loved her. They also raised a special flag outside the Burlington Recreation Center today. It features her beloved Kansas Jayhawks and the words, "Forever Loran".

Loran Flag

Loran was an inspiration to all who knew her and she touched more lives than she will ever know. The impact of her three decades on earth is immeasurable.

People like Loran are why we fight. For 17 years I spent my Labor Days alongside Ralph Hipp raising awareness of Friedreich's Ataxia and other neuromuscular diseases. The telethon may have ended, but the work of MDA does not. So many exciting things continue to happen because people like Loran are willing to live and fight and give every day.

Rest easy, my friend. Your work here lives on.

Chelsea Davidson

Chelsea

July 28, 1987 - July 6, 2017

Chelsea Davidson was diagnosed with FA when she was 12 years old. Despite her diagnosis, she continued to excel in school and complete four years of college majoring in Criminal Psychology. She was a huge fan of scary movies and made it a point to watch all she could find. She was an animal rights activist. She had many cats through her life and two service dogs, Autumn and Cruise. When Chelsea still had fair control of her upper body, she volunteered at her local animal shelter. She leaves many broken hearts behind. It is estimated that at least 300 people attended her funeral service. The immediate family she leaves behind are her brother and his wife, two half-siblings, and her Mom and Dad. Rest in eternal peace, Chelsea. You were truly an inspiration.

Janice DeSaw

Jan

March 11, 1966 - July 17, 2008

"Janice was truly the most kind hearted person I ever met and imagine I ever will! The first time I met her was at the USGA, both of us in our 20's. She was still walking back then with the aid of a walker. I can remember holding the bathroom door open for her like it was yesterday and her very factually telling me that would not be necessary, for she could do it herself!! I can remember thinking now there is a self sufficient girl. She wants things her way and on her own terms. So, out of the way I stood in complete awe of her. Not because she mastered the task without any difficulty, but because she mastered the task, despite the difficulty. Well, our 20 year friendship bloomed from there. In all the years I've known Jan, I do not believe I had ever heard her say, "WHY ME" nor have I ever heard her feel sorry for herself. She was always much too concerned with how her illness may have been affecting those around her, to really give into her own grief over a body that was continually failing her. She possessed the greatest spirit and light you could ever imagine. All you had to do was look at her and you would smile, for you couldn't help but love her humble ways and warm friendly smile. Truly a friend to all those that were blessed to have known her. I will forever keep my friend Jan in my heart and remember her strong resolve for life , in the face of all the adversity that layed before her. She reminds me yet today, how very blessed I am to have known such a fine person and to have shared in her life. May you walk, skip,run and dance my friend. Till we meet again." - Love Always Vicky

"Jan loved all without regard to their position in life. She was a great friend to all. She appreciated life to the fullest despite the difficulties that were fated unto her. Throughout it all, she always wore a smile. She was always thinking about how to help others. She made us better people through her great spirit for life. That spirit will live on in all she touched forever. She was truly an "ANGEL" on this earth." - her BFF, Sheila

"My memories of Jan are many, I remember what a beautiful person she was, I remember how beautiful she looked at her wedding, I remember her beautiful smile and the gentleness of her eyes, I remember when we watched the the Giants and the Ravens play the Superbowl and what a loyal Giants fan she was, but I guess mostly I'll remember Jan for her great strength and courage and the grace in which she carried herself in all situations." - her brother-in-law, Donnie

"I am blessed to have known Jan as a friend. She had a wonderful spirit and shared her light to all those around her. Her light still shines in my heart." - her friend, Noreen

"Jan was such a shining light! It was a real pleasure to welcome her into our extended family, and we all enjoyed spending time with her in New Orleans and Philadelphia for family events." - her cousin, Dede

"I worked with Jan for many years at the USGA. She was the sweetest and most caring person. I wish there were more people like her. She always wanted to help others. I'm so glad I can say I knew her." - her friend, Sharon

"I am glad to have had the honor of knowing Jan. Her positive attitude was inspiring and made you refocus on what is really important." - her friend, Doug

"Jan was my best friend, and my true love. She gave me her beautiful smile, her patience, and all of her love. She could be as silly as a little girl one moment, and as wise as a grandmother a minute later. She was the kindest, the most gentle, and most compassionate person I have ever known. I will miss her, and I will love her forever." - her husband, Blair

Becca Van Schoick

Karen

1982-2016

The precious soul of Rebecca Elizabeth Van Schoick left its earthly home on May 21, 2016, after a lifelong battle with Friedreichs ataxia . Rebecca was born in Houston, Texas on August 20, 1982. Her early years were spent in Texas, New Jersey, Tennessee, and France. She graduated as valedictorian from Grace Community School, Tyler, Texas in 2001 and from the University of Notre Dame in 2005.Becca met challenges with fierce determination and had goals that often seemed impossible to those around her. She loved her dog Kringle, the beauty and meaning of Nature, and her family and friends. She was a fan of the Fighting Irish and considered her 4 years at Norte Dame the best of her life.

Read more: Becca Van Schoick
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