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A Personal Good Bye

by David L. Howard

Nancy Edwards was as good as they come and I and my family were blessed to have her in our lives both personally and professionally.   She was somewhat shy (that is until she had a few Pina Coladas in Hawaii on one of our trips) but she had a work ethic second to none, a mind that constantly challenged her and others and a heart of gold that she shared with the people she cared about.  Our family was fortunate to experience all of Nancy and we are better for it.

Nancy came to work for me running World Champion Horse Equipment and through hard work and talent ended up running every division of Dabora.  My wife Mary and Nancy quickly became the best of friends and when my daughters Christy and Jennifer came to work for the company, they formed a professional and personal bond that lasted until she died.  Yes, Nancy was an important part of our company’s success but we loved her both when she worked for us and afterwards until her death.

Nancy had some physical challenges years ago that she overcame and was a beacon of strength as she cared for her husband Larry as he battled cancer until his body couldn’t take it anymore.   She went to work with the family on their farm in Wartrace until cancer again became a challenge in her life.  Believe me, no one fought as hard and was as determined to whip cancer as Nancy and she fought to the bitter end.

Despite knowing that Nancy was close to death, the call early that morning stopped our world.  How could someone with the grace, strength and quality of Nancy be gone…but she was.  Initially I didn’t shed a tear because I wanted to be strong for my family… and now I can’t stop crying.  I remind myself of the great times we had at work and play and I can almost visualize her coming into my office for our daily 10:00 o’clock meeting or riding bikes down the mountains in Hawaii (before we had our Pina Coladas).

When I think back on our time together, I might be crying but I am also happy and proud she came into my life and those are the memories I will carry forward.  She was one of the most special people who ever graced my life and I loved her dearly.  Our family was blessed to call Nancy family and in the future we will be able to think back of our times together and smile…right now that’s pretty hard to do.

If I should be fortunate enough to get to heaven, I have no doubt Nancy will have it straightened out when I get there and will have a checklist of things that we still have to do...and I thought our 10:00 o’clock meetings were over.

And remember, a person never really dies until we stop remembering them and the Howard family will never forget her.

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