View Full Version : A friend I never met.

07-11-2007, 12:17 PM
I participate in another cooking board, a small, private board run by a woman near Dallas. Her daughter had died several days after giving birth, and some time later, as a distraction from her grief, and an alternative to an intolerant board she'd frequented, she opened her site, purchasing software and a server to manage security and creativity. Although the number of regular posters is small, they represent several regions of the US, Australia, Great Britain, and a smattering elsewhere. You could really get to know everyone, and as here, lots about family and friends and activities beyond cooking. I've been visiting and posting there for four years, and last summer, while on a business trip to London, I hopped a train to Manchester and met two people I had been corresponding with off-line, and become friends with. What an opportunity!

Last evening I logged on to tell about an interesting discovery, only to learn that our "fearless leader" had died suddenly and unexpectedly. I was stunned for the rest of the day, and slept poorly. And now I am so, so filled with sorrow and loss.

I had to put it in words, for I find myself thinking over and over, "But she was posting Sunday night, cheerful and happy." She died in her sleep some hours later. Oh my.

07-11-2007, 12:26 PM
How incredibly sad. I am so very sorry for you and the other members of your board. Even though you may not have ever "met" her in person, you most definitely knew her and will certainly feel her loss. As we all know from this board (and probably others), friendships come about in the strangest of ways, and I think we all have people here that we consider to be good friends, some of whom we may have never met IRL.

07-11-2007, 12:31 PM
Oh, Canice, I am so sorry. I know that there are many people on this board that if I one day found out they had died I would be very, very sad even if I've never met them in person. Your grief is understandable. Hugs to you and your online community.

07-11-2007, 12:37 PM
Canice, I'm sorry to hear that.

And I have heard on other boards, that I read, but don't participate in as much, of members passing away.

And I always think...we are so lucky here, knock on wood. So many of us have been posting here for many years, and we have been fortunate to not lose anyone. Sure, people move on to other things, but to my knowledge it has not been due to death.

I totally understand what you're thinking. I'll never forget the patient at the hospital who, when I saw this person one night, was pretty much fine, up and talking and everything, and the next afternoon was braindead. It just sends chills.

07-11-2007, 12:38 PM

That is so very sad. It sounds like she was an amazing person who touched many lives. I'm very sorry for you and the other members of that community.

07-11-2007, 12:44 PM
I'm so very sorry for your loss.

07-11-2007, 12:54 PM
That is so sad, I am very sorry. Did someone from the family post what had happened? I worked for several years with a gal who was on the other side of the country and the same thing happened, it was weird the sense of loss that I had felt, I know what you mean.


07-11-2007, 12:58 PM
Oh My, indeed.
I am so very, very sorry.
You are such a kind and warm soul and do put your heart out there, that I can only imagine your anguish.

So very sorry for your loss...and the families affected by this as well.

07-11-2007, 12:59 PM
Hi Canice:

I am so sorry to hear of the passing of your friend. My condolences to you and the online board members. To have someone in your circle with whom you are friends, whether it be online or IRL, pass away like that is awful to experience. I will keep you in my thoughts...I am truly sorry for you, for your online community, and for her family members...


07-11-2007, 01:17 PM
Canice, I am so sorry for your loss, and that of the others on that board. Your online friend must have influenced many lives, for some of you to have met IRL and become friends.

How did you find out what happened? Did she have a family member who posted in her place?

What a sad situation. :(

07-11-2007, 01:19 PM
I am so sorry to hear that. What a tragic story. But how fortunate that you got to "meet" such a special lady.


07-11-2007, 01:57 PM
I'm so sorry! That's a difficult thing to deal with, no matter how well you "knew" the woman. Thoughts and prayers to you!

07-11-2007, 02:34 PM

I am so sorry to hear of this. It is a very sad thing that happened to your friend.

07-11-2007, 02:46 PM
What a sad thing to read. It is very understandable how this would leave you feeling grief, Canice. At least this lady is now with the daughter she loved and must have missed so terribly all this time.

07-11-2007, 02:47 PM
Canice.....I am so sorry for your loss. Our "cyber" friends can be as close as anyone we know in person. I know you will miss her terribly. I can very much relate. I joined a divorce support board while in the throes of divorce and became very close to a gal from Montana as we were the same age and having similar experiences. Long story short we started emailing and became like sisters. She visited me here in CT and I was fortunate to be able to take a trip to Montana. She died suddenly about a year ago and I still feel an emptiness. We emailed each other every day. I hope you can remember how this woman enriched your life and be so very thankful for that. She touched you and that is a gift.

Kay Henderson
07-11-2007, 02:53 PM
Canice --

How terribly sad! It is such a shock to lose someone unexpectedly.

I have a couple of thoughts.

First, how wonderful it is that we humans have come up with new ways to make friends. I know how much I treasure the folks I have met online here.

Second, if her Board continues for a few days but not permanently, perhaps you could invite the members to join us? We get carried away once in a while, but in general, of the boards I frequent, this is by far the friendliest and most supportive.

Loving thoughts to this remarkable woman's family and to you.


07-11-2007, 03:20 PM
I'm sorry to hear of your friend's passing. What a shock! :(

First, how wonderful it is that we humans have come up with new ways to make friends. I know how much I treasure the folks I have met online here.
And we get to "meet" people we may never have considered having as friends if we saw them on the street!:)

07-11-2007, 03:41 PM
Canice, I'm so sorry. Somehow the loss of a close "internet" friend seems harder to deal with as the usual grieving process can't be followed. You know, attending the services, etc.

How sad. (((((hugs)))))


07-11-2007, 04:09 PM
((((((((((Canice))))))))) I'm very sorry for the loss of your friend. I hope that board is a great comfort to you and those who posted regularly, to discuss what your friend meant to them.

07-11-2007, 04:09 PM
Oh! How sad for you and the rest of the posters on that board! Please do ask them to join us... Closure may be an over-used term, but it is so difficult to come to grips with a cyber-loss like this! ((((Canice))))

07-11-2007, 04:11 PM
Thank you all very, very much.
This woman's husband travelled extensively for work and she no longer had a job, so running the board was a real social outlet for an already social person. Someone said that visiting the board was like visiting her sunny home, having a view on her everyday life, and that's so. Only now there are heavy black curtains on all the windows. Debie, thank you for saying that, about there being no "normal" process in a case like this. I've been emailing my friends in England, but now what? Just so many tears. She had become friends IRL with a member in San Antonio, so if there are services, perhaps she will represent us all.

For those of you who asked how we found out, a friend of hers is a sort of co-administrator: occassional poster and helps with some technical stuff. He got the phone call and posted the message. It is so weird to see the whole place silent except for one thread with growing messages of shock and sorrow.

07-11-2007, 04:17 PM
Canice.....I am so sorry for your loss. I know you will miss her terribly... I hope you can remember how this woman enriched your life and be so very thankful for that. She touched you and that is a gift.

(((Canice))), please accept my condolances and let your other board's members know that we here are so very sorry for the loss of their "founder".

I agree with Dee's sentiments above, and Debie's, too, about the normal grieving process and closure perhaps being harder. May this woman's memory be a blessing to you and all the other people whose lives she touched.

07-11-2007, 05:21 PM

What a sad experience...the depth of your sadness is linked to the depth of the fondness that you held for her. What is her name?

Are you familiar with the concept of the "Anam Cara?" Anam Cara, in ancient Celtic wisdom, translates to "Soul Friend," and references a teacher, guide, or bearer of wisdom. The premise of the Anam Cara is that souls recognize one another before people actually get to know one another. The Anam Cara friendship transcends time and space, physical distance is irrelevant. It seems that you and she shared a type of Anam Cara friendship...you had not "met" one another in the physical sense, and yet, something about your souls connected...even in cyberland we make connections...connections that are important and meaningful...

I'm sorry that your friend died, and my hope is that your Anam Cara friendship lives on...Kim

07-11-2007, 05:24 PM
I am sorry for your loss.

07-11-2007, 05:30 PM
I am sorry for your loss Canice.

07-11-2007, 05:31 PM
Sure, people move on to other things, but to my knowledge it has not been due to death.

Actually, I think we did lose lisalee to death about a year ago.

Wendy w
07-11-2007, 05:31 PM
Canice, this is truly sad, I am very sorry.

07-11-2007, 05:34 PM
Actually, I think we did lose lisalee to death about a year ago.

Is this accurate?

Canice, I'm so incredibly sorry. :(

07-11-2007, 05:50 PM
Is this accurate?

Not meaning to hijack Canice's thread, but yes I believe it is. Lisa mentioned to some of us last March that she had Stage 4 cancer and that it was terminal. I was emailing with her for a while and then nothing. I pray that it was not the case, but likely so. I never said anything, because I had no confirmation of the fact.

Canice, I am very sorry for your loss. Just because you had not met in IRL does not lessen the grief.

07-11-2007, 06:05 PM

Please accept my condolances and let your other board's members know that I am so very sorry for the loss of your friend and that my thoughts and prayers are with you all and with her family.



07-11-2007, 07:07 PM
Thinking of you and your friends.

07-11-2007, 08:42 PM
I'm really sorry to hear about your loss, Canice. Isn't it amazing how these online communities come to seem like family?

07-11-2007, 08:54 PM
Canice, I'm so sorry to hear about your friend's death. I hope you and the other community members will find some solace in each other's company, either on that board or through connections outside the board.

07-11-2007, 09:00 PM
Condolences. Hopefully, someone will take up the torch and continue the legacy of the bulletin board/community she created.

07-12-2007, 07:46 AM

That is so sad. I am sorry about your loss.


07-12-2007, 08:16 AM
Canice I am so sorry to hear of your loss.

07-12-2007, 01:48 PM
Oh, Canice, how awful. I'm so sorry for your loss. Sounds like she was s lovely lady and a good friend.

07-12-2007, 02:02 PM

I am sorry I only just saw this. I am so sorry for your loss. Sounds like you were a dear friend to her and she knew that even if you never met her in person. You sorrow is understandable, and she will be missed by all those she touched.



07-12-2007, 02:15 PM
Canice--like all the other posters, I wanted to send hugs your ways with prayers that you find comfort and a way to ease your loss. I also wanted to let you know that I am frequently touched by your posts. You are obviously a very loving and caring person and all of your friends, online and "real life" are so very lucky to have you in our lives. Take care.

07-12-2007, 07:27 PM
Thanks again for the hugs and empathy: I knew if there were a place where folks would understand that YES, she *was* a friend, and YES, she had a real place in my life, it would be this fine group.
And what remarkably kind words, Romandub, they really mean a lot. As a matter of fact, I HAVE come up with a small way to pay tribute to Jacqui, to her love of cooking, and to all she did to create our lovely -if small- virtual community: I announced that I would be making a dinner from recipes either created by or heartily endorsed by her, and many of our community are joining in, and posting their favorite recipes she shared. So next week, there will be dinner party across the US, in the UK, and Australia, all featuring dishes made from Jacqui's recipes. We raise a collective spatula to her! :)

07-12-2007, 07:42 PM
Oh, Canice, what a wonderful tribute to her.