Wednesday, April 05, 2006

In Loving Memory

This afternoon I attended the funeral of a dear lady who meant a whole lot to a whole lot of people. Betty Clinton was kind, selfless, caring, and generous. Her generosity was so meaningful to me that every time I write a check to a charity, I think of her. Every. Single. Time. Without fail. I probably will my whole life long.

Betty wasn't wealthy, but she gave freely whenever there was a need. Hers was often the first check in the coffer, and sometimes she gave more than once if the need prevailed. She was extraordinary. I only hope that someday I can be like her.

Betty had a daughter, Denise, who was kidnapped from her grandparents' hotel when she was just nine years old. For two and a half years, until Denise's body was found, Betty and her family endured the sorrow of not knowing what had happened or where she was. The story was reported across the nation, and there were many cruel calls made to their home as a result of all the exposure. It was the most difficult time of Betty's life, yet she holds no bitterness. Throughout the ordeal, Betty held her family together. When her pastor asked her how she made it through, how she lives with such grace towards such a terrible situation, she simply answered that finally she just forgave. Remarkable.

I find it fitting that memorial contributions should be sent to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. I know that most of you don't know Betty, but I am going to give you an opportunity to give in her honor anyway. She is the kind of person you would most like to meet, and she will be sorely missed. As a tribute to her and to those you know like her, and to contribute to a most worthy cause, for which there is always a need for funding, please consider sending a donation to the address below.

National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
699 Prince St.
Alexandria, VA 22314-3175

We miss you, Betty, and we are all better for having known you.

1 comment:

Dawn said...

Betty sounds like she was an amazing woman. She held qualities that my husband and I hope will become natural to us, in that we won't have to think "It's time to be generous now" we just will be generous.

What Betty experienced with her daughter is one of my greatest fears. I can't imagine what that would do to my mother heart. And to hear that she forgave is a testament to her strength of character. Amazing. My hope is that Betty has been reunited with her daughter in the hereafter and is once again holding her in her arms.