OBITUARY

Lynn McKenzie

July 7, 1949May 3, 2011

Lynn Renee McKenzie, beloved wife, mother, and sister, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by her family on May 3, 2011. Lynn was born to Victoria and Lavern Joslin, on July 7, 1949 in Seattle, Washington. From the moment she set foot on this earth, no grass ever grew under her feet. She graduated from Shorecrest High School in 1967. While working three different jobs, she went on to graduate from the University of Washington with a degree in Speech and Hearing Pathology. In 1978, she met M. Jon McKenzie. They were married on May 17, 1980. Their son, Matthew was born in 1982 and daughter, Michelle was born in 1984. After discovering her true passion was teaching, Lynn obtained her credentials and opened her own Montessori school, working out of her home. She then went on to teach kindergarten and third grade at Sunnyside Elementary School in Marysville, and received Teacher of the Year Awards on two occasions with other various special awards. Children and education were a major part of Lynn’s life. So was cooking. She was a food demo person and cooking instructor for PCC (Puget Consumers Cooperative) Natural Markets. Her family and faith completed her life. And what a life it was! For 15 years, Lynn fought a valiant war against colon cancer, never once letting disease dictate her life. Nothing could stop her. She organized, cooked for and hosted community kitchens, memorials, church teas, legendary Christmas parties and her daughter’s wedding. Supported by her husband, family, oncologist, friends, and countless others whose lives she touched with her innate kindness and deeds, she showed us what life is really about. So let us all bid her sweet soul a well-deserved goodbye and eternal rest. (Like this girl will ever really rest!) Lynn is survived by her husband and children, sister, Jo Joslin, brother, Jack Joslin (and family), mother-in-law, Louise McKenzie, sisters-in- law: Edi Dirkes, Bonnie Crockett, and Margie Impecoven (and their families), brothers-in law: David and Scott McKenzie (and family) , Uncle Leon Joslin, cousins Tim Joslin (and family), Mandy Joslin, Brad Swank, J. Swank (and family), Annette Thornhill (and family), and many, many . . . many friends. A memorial celebration of Lynn’s life will be held at the First Presbyterian Church of Snohomish, 1306 Lakeview Avenue in Snohomish, WA. on Saturday, May 14th at 7 p.m.

Services

  • Memorial Service Saturday, May 14, 2011
REMEMBERING

Lynn McKenzie

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Jo Joslin

July 15, 2011

Lynn R. McKenzie by Jo Joslin

My sister Lynn was a force of nature. And when I think of her, even more “F” words come to mind.

Family … Friends … Faith … and … Fighter

There was also that “T” word … Teacher and the other one “Talker” and then the “K” word: “Kindness incarnate”. And she was all of those things. But no one, even Lynn, does it all alone. So I wanted to acknowledge some people in this room who supported and loved her as much as I do.

“F” word # 1: Family. When you are in your 20’s or 30’s, standing at the altar reciting those vows “in sickness and in health”, you really don’t think it will ever happen. But it does! And Lynn’s husband honored those vows to the very last breath of her life. He was there for every chemo-session, every doctor’s appointment, and every surgery. And despite losing his own father just last month, he administered Lynn’s medications every 3 hours for the last few weeks without missing a beat. He is not my brother in-law, he is my brother. Here’s to you, M. Jon McKenzie.

And then there are those two kids Lynn and Jon brought into this world. Michelle, you’ve got your Mom’s hustle, drive and faith. Matt, you’ve got her sensitivity and night-owl gene. You were and are the greatest joy in your Mother’s life.

OK, “F” word # 2: Friends. This room is full of them but I need to mention a certain group in particular. I’m going to call out your names and ask you to stand so we can embarrass you publicly. Carole, Michelle, Candace, Lynne, Sharon, Kathy, Claudia, Molly, Marilyn, and Debbie - These ladies are known as the “Girl Friends”. They have been meeting once a year for well over a decade. And their bond lasts throughout the rest of the year because they communicate constantly. Lynn was able to relax and let loose and laugh. And these are the people that made that possible. Thanks Ladies!

And that brings me to “F” word # 3: Faith. Lynn’s oncologist, Dr. Kaplan has it. And even though I’ve only met a handful of the people from this congregation, I know this room is overflowing with many others who shared and appreciated the strength of my sister’s faith. So to Pastor Ann and Pastor Charlie and all of you who bent the rules a bit and prayed that Lynn would be set free rather than linger any longer in pain, thank you. Because, it appears those prayers have been answered.

And now for “F” word # 4: Fighter. Some fighters go one round. Some go five. The odds of surviving stage 4 colon cancer don’t go much beyond that. But cancer picked the wrong person when it took on my sister. She went 15 rounds. 15 years beyond statistics, beyond all odds, because Lynn loved life and nothing was going to stop her from living it.

All cancer did was allow Lynn to show others what they could do, not what they couldn’t do. All cancer did was bring her family and friends even closer together. All cancer did was strengthen her faith even more.

Life isn’t defined by a disease. Or how much time you are allotted. Life is what you choose to do with what you are given. Life is about the way you treat others. Life is about how much love you give. So guess who won?

I’ll give you a hint … it’s an “L” word. My fabulous sister, Lynn.

I want to ask all of you a favor. And yes, it will involve audience participation …

For the past 10 years, Lynn hosted an annual Christmas party. And she made everything. And just before the doorbell rang and the first guest arrived, she would survey the kitchen - A kitchen where every conceivable counter top was laden with food. Appetizers, fruit platters, entrees, more appetizers, salads, veggies, sandwiches and her world famous cookies and she would turn to me and say, “Do you think I made enough?”

And I would reply, “Well, if the entire continent of South America has confirmed they’re coming, then, yes … I think you’re good.��

We called it the Dom DeLouise syndrome. And it became a tradition.

So as a final tribute, I’m going to tweak the words a little and ask you all to join me.

The words are: “Lynn, do you think you made enough friends?”

So please assume the position, hands on face, eyes skyward. And on the count of three … please say it loud enough so that she can hear you.

1 … 2 … 3 …

Michelle Ruther

July 15, 2011

MOM (Lynn Renee McKenzie)
By
Michelle S. (McKenzie) Ruther

My Mom was a great mom, a great teacher, a great person, and a great friend. She has had a substantial impact on those around her from the kids she taught to the people she has helped to our family and friends. I will miss calling her up to talk, helping her with craft projects for Community Kitchen, or her Sunday School Class, I will miss her support and encouragement, getting gardening or cooking instructions, tea parties, her unending optimism, giving her a simple hug and a kiss on the cheek, to name a few.

I know that I am not the only one that will miss her terribly. There are many of you here that feel the same loss that I do. So for you, I wanted to share with you a couple things she has taught me that may be of comfort. One is to say thank you to others when you appreciate them, so thank you to the church congregation for being there for my family and for my Mom. We and she really appreciate the support and she loved and enjoyed being a part of this church. Thank you to our family and friends who have been helping put together the service and helping us with the day to day things we were not able to think about as Mom became more ill. Thank you to everyone who has been praying for my Mom and my family. Thank you to Dr. Kaplan and God for helping my Mom enjoy fourteen extra years with us. My Mom lived her life to the fullest and appreciated each extra day.

The second thing that my Mom taught me was how to always look at the bright side. “Things can always be worse” she would say. There are many things to be thankful for like the things she was able to do with the extra time she had. She took trips with my Dad, went on a hot air balloon ride with Matt and me and was there for 14 extra years of birthdays, Christmases, Thanksgivings, Easters, Valentines Days and Anniversaries. She was there to see Matt and I graduate from high school and then from college. She was able to be at my wedding for which we are so grateful for. She was able to say good bye and to let us know that she loves us. So when you are sad, please remember that Mom lived each day to the fullest and we should follow her example.

Laurie Miller

July 6, 2011

I met Lynn when she first started at Sunnyside, she was my sons kindergarten teacher then later his third grade teacher. She was a dedicated teacher who had a true passion for the job. My son enjoyed having her as his teacher and I enjoyed having her teach my son. I am glad I saw her a few months before her passing as she was a true inspiration to all who knew her. My heart is with her family during this most difficult time.

Gerald Bautista

July 6, 2011

" Lynn Renee McKenzie showed me the greatness of my teachings back during my third grade year she was my third grade teacher in Sunnyside I was pretty glad I met her and saw her still around when I went into 4th grade and into 5th grade those came my best years I got to say that was fun seeing her around but then I left elementary June 2005 to go to middle school which then I'll miss everyone especially my third grade teacher but it was a good elementary time".
" I remember in 3rd grade Mrs. McKenzie she would give me work to do but then there were some challenges I didnt how to do since it was hard so then my classmates helped me which then made me feel good about it. I would do the math easily since im good in math but reading gave me struggles since I wasnt that good but then she boost me a bit for that I really appreciate it".
" Mrs. McKenzie please never forgive me and watch over me on something I need to do and to accomplish. I was glad I had you for my teacher in third grade".
"May God with you and God Bless"

Jon McKenzie

June 9, 2011

Lynn gave a few speeches about her life with cancer. Here is a copy of that speech:

A Journey With Cancer

My Name is Lynn McKenzie. I am with the
First Presbyterian Church of Snohomish. I’m going to tell you a little bit about my cancer journey with our Lord and how he has taught me about humbleness, trust, faith, prayer, patience and fear.

Well, my husband Jon and I got married at thirty years of age .We had both gotten our education, traveled, and we were ready to settle down. We vowed that when we had children we would bring them up in the Christian faith as both Jon and I had been reared. After searching for many months, we found a warm welcome and sense of family (God’s family) at the First Presbyterian church of Snohomish. We soon became active in the church. Jon eventually became a deacon, and I was an elder, Sunday school teacher, and Girl Scout leader at the church. Our children attended a Christian school. We attended church regularly, participated in bible classes, and helped other people.

Then when I was forty-seven, I was diagnosed with stage 1 colon cancer. We went to the only surgeon we knew who had operated on Jon before. He removed the cancerous portion of the colon, but the oncologist we were referred to failed to prescribe chemo therapy (which we know now was a huge mistake) and within one year the cancer reoccurred and had metastasized to a stage 3 ( meaning that it went through the colon and was spreading to other organs). I was in real trouble!

Yet, what an eye opener this experience was in so many ways! I professed to be a Christian and live the Lord’s way, but there is a whole lot more to it than that. Here is where I met the Lord face to face and heart to heart.
I reacted like most people with WHY ME LORD? Then after the disbelief that this could be happening, the anger, and yes, a little “pity party” for myself, I began to get a new prospective on my life. Cancer is an evil disease. Even with modern research, technology, and new treatments coming out regularly, from 2007 to this year, deaths from cancer have doubled. You have the choice to let this burden roll over you and take you down, or you can fight it. One of my dad’s more memorable mottos was, “Get in there and fight, fight, fight.” That is what I decided to do. Don’t give up and keep moving until you can’t anymore. My children were only in junior high school. I needed to be there for my family.

I’ve always been a “take charge” person. I read the book Let Go, Let God, but still had a problem letting go. Now there was no choice anymore. I had to humbly let go and have faith in and trust the Lord completely to guide me. He did just that. First, through a co-worker, he led me to the best oncologist available. I was given a 20-40% chance of making it through this second colon surgery within a year. Yet, the Lord and I broke previous records and I made it. That was followed by many, many radiation and chemo therapy treatments. Through all that my trust and faith in the Lord became stronger and closer. My prayers became more specific and I talked directly to my Lord.

I went into remission for four years and ten months before the cancer returned in my diaphragm muscle and is gradually spreading to other organs. It certainly wasn’t what you wanted to hear. Yet, this time with having been rather humbled by the Lord and having established a closer trust and faith in him, I found myself asking, “Well, what do we do now Lord?”He responded by having one miracle after another happen to me on this journey of life. I was in on the cutting edge for many new drugs and cancer fighting techniques which have given me fourteen more years to my life. I not only got to see my children graduate from high school, but from college as well. This past October I even made it to my daughter’s wedding. My son and daughter both have their own homes now and Matthew, my son (who claims that he may stay a bachelor), has been dating a young lady for some time now.

I have met many people going through this same burden of cancer. I’ve made many friends as we relate what each of us has been through. If you get low in spirit, the Lord introduces you to witness someone who has had it much worse than you have. For example, one day I was drawn to sit next to a lovely woman named Christine who didn’t look like one of the patients at all. She engaged me in conversation about her bouts with this disease and it came out that she was facing something like her 30th operation. I was coming close to my 8th at that time, again how humbling.

Most of the people who seem to be coping the best with this disease are those who have the Lord in their lives. I have been so blessed to have the Lord in my life, a warm and loving family, and a very supportive church family who have prayed for me so diligently that I can actually see and feel what the power of prayer can do.

I still wonder sometimes ”Why me Lord?”, yet not in reference to having cancer, but why did my journey of life take me down this path? What is it in your plan for me that I should be doing for you? I think it might be to show others that you are not going through this alone, put your trust and faith in the Lord your God. He is with you every step of the way if you really get to know Him. Also, faith shown through you can be giving hope to others. When friends and other patients I have met hear how long I have been fighting this disease they compare their situation with mine and take on a more positive attitude that they can fight it and extend their life time too. I also feel that in my life’s journey I have not spoken out openly for the Lord and what he can do in your life. This is my chance to do that.

Besides teaching me to be humble, pray directly from your heat to the Lord, and have complete trust and faith in Him to guide my life, I am learning to have patience. Except for when I was a teacher, Lynn and patience in the same sentence is like an oxymoron. Waiting in lines, waiting rooms and traffic is not my thing. I get frustrated with Tupperware cartons, and medicine bottles I can’t open and if something doesn’t work, I just throw it out. Well, with cancer you are constantly waiting in waiting rooms, or adapting and making changes in your life to accommodate the effects of the latest medications you are on, or a new apparatus you have to wear. I’m slowing down gradually, and can’t do many of the things I used to like to do. I’m learning to accept it and have patience to invent new ways to do variations of things I used to do, or just do what I can and be thankful for the help I have been given by others.

Finally, the issue of fear arises. People have asked me if I am afraid to die. I’d have to say, “No.” I see fear of death as a lack of trust in the Lord. He has been with me through this whole journey and I feel that he will be with me to the end just like the supportive, loving husband and family that He provided me with. I am more concerned with how I will go. It has been explained to me in two ways, neither of which is very pleasant. That is the hardest part especially for those who love you the most and will have to see you go this way. As for when you will die, the Lord is the only one who really knows. Yet, remember I have already had a miraculous extra fourteen years of life. So I think the best thing you can do is make each day count and be thankful for that precious time. When our children were younger they would delight in picking up a “lucky penny.” It was almost as exciting as an Easter egg hunt. Now in our retired years (and not because of the economy) Jon and I have been picking up “lucky pennies” and other coins. Every time we pick one up, I see is as a sign or a “penny from Heaven” for one more lucky day that I’m still on my life’s journey here. And guess what, last week I found two dimes.

In Memory of Lynn R. McKenzie

Louise and Carl Morberg

June 9, 2011

Letter from Louise Morberg to Jon:

Dear Jon,

I hardly know how to express my sorrow to you. I also am sorry that I didn’t give Lynn a call after the wedding. She looked so nice and to think that she could talk to the guests as she did. She definitely was a very gifted caring person. That poor girl must have suffered more than I realized. God Bless you for being such a supportive husband. I’m sure you suffered as well as you saw your loved one endure as she did.

I did know she was a special teacher from my conversations on the phone with her.

I’m also sorry that I couldn’t have been more helpful with suggestions for her cancer.

What a kind soul she was as she told me how she helped her younger brother, Richard, in his last days. The Lord gave her a special compassion for him all the while she was having her own problems.

I know you both will have many stars in your crown from the Lord. These past months have been especially hard on your whole family, seeing her slip away.

We enjoyed the service but both Carl & I ad a hard time hearing the tributes to Lynn. Would it be possible when you have time to E-Mail your tribute, Michelle’s & Jo’s – I want my daughter to hear and read them as she couldn’t come in the evening with her family. She really liked Lynn and we did see her at the Co-op when she was demonstrating. We’ll miss her but she is no longer suffering which is a blessing. I’m sending you the clipping from the Bremerton Sun made years ago about her mom. She was like a mentor to me – my mom & auntie Ester met before either of them were married so there are many memories I have about Lynn’s family.

I know now that your grief will be heavy. You do have your Children but the days ahead will be hard.

So glad you are Christians because that is where the comfort comes.

Kudos o you for being a kind loving and caring husband for Lynn and making her marriage a happy and wonderful experience for her. She told me of all the trips you’ve had and that she had done and seen what she wanted to do. God bless you.

Lovingly,

Louise Morberg

Lynne and Keith Foster

June 8, 2011

Dear Jon,

I tried several times to sit down and write you a letter, but the words were not there. It was not that I was too sad to write. I was absolutely at peace with my thoughts. My only prayer these last few weeks was to see the pain that daunted Lynn’s life end. I was so thankful. When we talked a few weeks ago, Lynn seemed to have come to terms with her illness and the reality that the end of her life was near. At the memorial you enclosed a card to write down a memory but that little card brought a flood, far too many for that little card.

I remember when Lynn and I became friends in High School. How that happened is still a mystery to me, but God was probably involved. We had the same name and we each had a horse named Duke, but that is where our similarities ended. Lynn was the ultimate girl, and me, a tom boy from birth. Our favorite times were long walks and talks at the Seattle Center, and then there was always another stop at the airport to “people watch”.

I remember when we moved in together during Lynn’s first year in college. It was a Bellevue apartment and Lynn and I shared a room. Bad idea, remember, we were opposites. I went to bed at 10:00 PM and Lynn was never in bed before 2:00 AM. I liked the window open and the heat off and Lynn, of course, the heat was on HIGH and the windows closed. I always had to get up at least once in the middle of the night to turn the heat off and then Lynn of course was cold, and she would turn it on again. By morning, I would be exhausted, but Lynn with her 3-4 hours of interrupted sleep, would cheerfully leap out of bed ready to welcome the day.

Sometime after that 1st year, on a Friday afternoon in 1968, on a warm summer day, we were tired of school and we should join the navy. Granted, it was probably my idea, but I know it didn’t take much convincing for Lynn to agree. Downtown Seattle we went, with our new futures all mapped out in our brains. We had an immediate change of plans when the naval recruiter said that the Navy was closed for any new enlistments. Remember, it was 1968, the Vietnam war was raging and everyone threatened with the draft was enlisting in the Navy. He quickly advised us that the Army was hiring and they were right next door. We looked at each other and said “why not” and headed up the street. In the matter of less than an hour, we were Army recruits. The last thing the recruiter said to us as we were heading out the door was “remember you have 72 hours to change your mind”. We laughed and said “No way. We are going to do this!” That was, until we got home and our fathers just about hit the roof. Needless to say, by Monday morning, we had rescinded our applications, and we were civilians again.

I remember 4 of us heading to Europe in 1969. Our plan was to first hitchhike the British Isles. Now Lynn and hitchhiking is like an oxymoron isn’t it? Lynn in her blue London Fog rain coat, her white gloves and that signature scarf in her hair doesn’t describe any hitchhiker I had ever seen before, or ever will again. We never failed to get a ride. It was only midway thru our trip did we realize why. One truck driver told us that he picked us up because he thought we were a couple of his town’s ladies who had missed the bus.

I remember we were in Florence, Italy, walking down a little side street, when we came upon a large group of people surrounding an outdoor TV. It was only when we heard “The Eagle has Landed” did we realize we were about to miss the first moon landing. We ran as fast as we could for the next 2 miles back to the little villa where we were staying, to view that history in the making, with the English broadcasts drowned up by the Italian translations.

I remember the day in Dusseldorf, Germany when Lynn was not feeling well. It was towards the end of our European Vacation and we wanted to see the Neanderthal Man Museum. Our trusted guide book, usually in Lynn’s possession, said the museum was at the beginning of a long hiking trail, about 20 miles out of town. Lynn decided against staying at the Youth Hostel to rest, saying the fresh air would do her good. It was a beautiful day. Little did we know that we walked right past the museum in the woods, and as we walked, Lynn got sicker and sicker. Hikers told us that there was a small restaurant at the end of the trail, and we were almost carrying her at this point. About a mile from the top Lynn could go no further. I ran to the top and was able to convince the owner, in my very limited German, that we needed help. He and his son got her to their restaurant and then put Lynn in the back of their truck and transported her, by a back road, to a brand new county hospital. I think God materialized that hospital just for our benefit. They spoke no English there but somehow the head doctor told us Lynn had appendicitis and needed an immediate operation. We panicked. We were at the end of our trip, in a foreign country. We had very little money. Again God stepped in. We asked the doctor to estimate a cost. It was less than $800.00 and that was for the operation and a 4 day stay. A real deal as far as we were concerned. We pooled our cash, called Lynn’s folks, and the operation went perfectly. Afterwards, Lynn had a great time, so great that I am not sure she wanted to leave. A young intern came in several times a day to visit, and Lynn, forever the teacher, helped him with his English.

I remember when she met you Jon. She called after your first date and little did you know that you didn’t have a chance of escape. It was love at first sight. After you guys had been dating for quite a while we kidded her as to when you were getting married. She said, “We will get married when Jon is ready to get married … but we will get married!!”

As we moved apart in later years I remember many very long phone conversations. Let me clarify, Lynn usually did most of the talking and I listened. I heard all about your job and hers, every detail about the kids and how they were doing in school and the conflicts with the neighbors, and of course, her illness. Her positive attitude never wavered. Her focus was entirely on the future and her next mountain to climb.

I remember the last long phone conversation we had in August of last year. It was the first time in all those years of cancer, I had ever heard her talk about her own demise, but then, it was only for a moment. The conversation quickly returned to Michelle’s wedding and the plans that were made.

I will always remember our last visit at your house several weeks ago. She walked into the room obviously full of pain, but that quickly faded away. Just like old times, the five of us sat there and drank our tea and laughed and told old “war” stories. Lynn told us about her mean old grandmother. I told Lynn that I will dig up the dirt on that mean old woman and find out what made her that way. I will not forget that promise, even if now, she probably knows the answer.

I will remember Lynn as kind and gentle, but strong and determined, a lover of children, a teacher from birth. I will remember Lynn because at the end of her life, she was able to disregard her personal pain so she could focus all her energy on her family, and to make sure they would be OK. We will all miss her, but remember, she has left a legacy that will last a lifetime.

Anytime you need to talk, Keith and I are always close by. Thanks Jon for making her life so wonderful!

Love, Lynne

Jon McKenzie

June 8, 2011

Lynn Renee McKenzie – my Wife, my Love, my Friend, and so much more!

Lynn was born in Seattle, Washington on July 07, 1949. Whenever someone asked for her birth date, she always said “7, 7, 49 – I’m a perfect square!” You know, 7 times 7 equals 49, which is a perfect square! The medical profession asked this a lot and she never tired of this little joke.

I meet Lynn about 32-33 years ago. We both worked at The Boeing Company – me for about five years and Lynn had just started. She was trying to find a room where she had to attend a meeting and was a little lost. She came over to ask me if I knew where the meeting room was located. When I saw her, all I could think of was that this was a very Elegant Lady! This image / description of Lynn has been with me ever since and is the best way I can describe her. What was really scary was that this Elegant Lady was coming over to talk to me. Much later, Lynn told me that when she saw me and the way I dressed (my shirt was worn and threadbare on the elbows) and the forlorn look on my face (I had been recently dropped by a girlfriend), that nobody was looking after for me. That’s Lynn, looking out for the downtrodden and lonely. After that, she would talk to me whenever she had business in my part of the work building and I would look for her in her part of the building. After a few weeks of this, I finally got up the courage to go to her and ask her on a date. SHE SAID YES!!!! After giving and getting the details of the date, I walked back to my desk, but my feet never touched the ground!

Our first date was wonderful! As you know, Lynn can carry on a conversation with the shyest introvert around and end with everyone feeling like you had participated in the most stimulating conversation in the world. I feel that I may have been one of her quieter dates, but she made me feel fantastic and I seemed to relax her. We both knew we had to go out again. And we did! Many times! After a little over a month, a strange feeling started coming over me. I had felt it before, but not like this – I was falling in Love with this Elegant, Classy Lady! When I told her, she said that she felt it too, but a few weeks earlier. She was afraid to tell me, because she figured that I wouldn’t just walk away, I’d RUN!

This is when I found out that Lynn makes deals with God! She told me that before we met, she had had a few unsuccessful relationships with guys. They were looking for a good time, but nothing permanent. At about 28 years old, Lynn was looking for someone to settle down with. Getting tired of this life, she said a few prayers to God asking for someone to come into her life that would love her and start a family together – otherwise she was going to forget the husband part and go right to adopting some children! At the same time, I was thinking that I was tired of dating (which wasn’t very often), tired of the breakups (which always occurred), and was ready to get married (no thought of children, yet). You can guess the next part – God arranged for us to meet, to talk, to go out, and to fall in Love. Lynn always said that she had prayed for someone to come into her life, and there I was. Because of all this, Lynn should have realized that there was no way I would have run away from her, God had answered both our “prayers” and now it was up to us to follow through.

We fell in love, but our past experiences wouldn’t always let us accept it. About two to three months after meeting Lynn, she came to me and said that she had a new love in her life and that his name was Max! My face fell to the floor where my stomach was already laying. Lynn saw this and continued talking and describing Max – beautiful coat, strong, loving, four legs, great personality – everything a girl could want …. In a dog! I had quit listening so it hadn’t dawned on me that Lynn was pulling my leg. When I finally found reality, and realized that Lynn had pulled me into her joke, I realized that I loved her very much and couldn’t bear the thought of losing her. But, my past experiences had shown that the ladies could only take me for almost a year before they walked away. I still had a number of months before that time would come with Lynn.

The months flew by and we got to know each other and fall deeper in love. Our one year anniversary of our first meeting was coming up. I knew I wanted to marry Lynn, but I had said nothing – for fear of the unlucky one year milestone. Then, Lynn decided that she wanted to fix me a special dinner of my favorite foods – lobster, shrimp, clams, wine, and a special desert. The date she chose for the dinner was the day before our one year anniversary! Oh, oh! This could be bad – but the food was going to be so good! I agreed; Lynn came over and prepared the most wonderful meal; then we sat down to talk! Here it comes – the goodbye talk!

Lynn started by saying that we had been dating for almost a year and she wanted to know what I was going to do. She had a lot of plans and not enough time. She had to know what my plans were. I think that I was so relieved that she wasn’t breaking up that I told her that I had planned on marrying her, but that I didn’t want to ask until we had been together for a year – which was the next day. She told me that it was too late – I had already asked her and she had accepted. I told her that if anything went wrong with our marriage, it was her fault because she hadn’t given me my one full year of dating before I proposed. The proposal wasn’t exactly text book, but it worked out just fine!

Our wedding was held in The Lake Forest Park Presbyterian Church and wasn’t perfect – but it seemed like it was. The things that went wrong were funny and gave us many hours of laughter. At one point my Best Man asked why I wasn’t nervous. I told him that getting married to Lynn was so natural that I could see no reason to be nervous. We were married with just a few small incidents – like the ring bearer running from the alter crying during the singing of the Lord’s Prayer or that everyone (including my new wife) left the church to go to the reception in Edmonds and left me at the church without a car or a ride.

Lynn and I knew our marriage was going to be great – it had to because of how it started. The earth moved for us …. Literally! We were married in the afternoon on May 17, 1980; Mount Saint Helens blew up on the morning of May 18th! Now that’s the way to celebrate the start of a marriage!

Once God had answered Lynn’s prayer, He continued working on us. He gave us good times, trying times, tasks, successes, failures, joys, sadness, and a sense that He was there with us and working with us all the time. When Lynn got cancer, we wondered where He was and why this was happening. He stayed with us and showed us where to get help, but we couldn’t see why this was happening and Lynn wondered what God had in mind for her to do. The cancer got worse and we could see no other way to fix Lynn, so our prayers change from curing Lynn to ending Lynn’s suffering. Again, God came and answered our prayers. One of the last things I overheard Lynn saying was when she was talking to God. She told Him that she felt that she had accomplished all that she could up to that time and that she was ready to go, but that she would like Him to hurry up and take her. That was Lynn, always in a hurry! Within a few days He did.

My Elegant Lady is gone from me, now. Lynn’s tasks are done and her suffering is over. I have only my memories of her and our times together. They will live with me for the rest of my life. So I say, so long dear Lynn, I’ll miss you so much.

Mick Kelly, Marcie Bergquist

June 8, 2011

Hi Jon,
I'm so sorry to hear about Lynn's passing. I think what I will remember the most about Lynn is - the way she dressed. She was always so beautiful, so well groomed.

I tried to make it to her memorial services, but somehow I got the wrong address and I got lost. I had Lakeshore Drive, but asked where to go and they sent me to Lake Stevens - so I got more lost.

I had the greatest talk with Lynn a few months ago. I will always be thankful for that. She was a good friend and I will miss her. Hope to see you at the Beach this summer.

(From a Tender Toughts Card)

Our hearts are with you,

Malinda Forry

June 8, 2011

Dear Jon & Family,
Keeping you all in my daily thoughts & Prayers; even though I was not physically a part of your family, Lynn and I communicated as if we were sisters. I look forward to the day in eternity to reconnect with her.

(From a Today and Always Card)

Loving Sympathy to all of you,