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A Long Overdue Update

March 23, 2016

Debbie here once again. It’s now been a little over 5 years since Jill went to heaven. Over the last several months I’ve spent a lot of time re-reading Jill’s entire blog and getting it out of cyberspace and into Microsoft Word. For some reason I’ve been feeling some urgency to get this done. I don’t know if there is a time limit on how long something remains on web when it’s not being updated. I guess I just wanted to be sure I had all of her good work somewhere safe. Maybe I’ll look into getting it published. Now for some family updates.

Many of you are already aware of this, but Jill’s husband Hank, passed away suddenly on Feb. 27, 2012. We were all devastated, especially for Daniel. I became Daniel’s legal guardian for a few months until he turned 18. He lived with (and still does off and on)  his best friend’s family, the Ingalls. There are not enough superlatives in the English language to say how wonderful this family has been for Daniel. God provided him with the best place possible and Jill’s family continue to be grateful to them for their willingness to help.

Daniel is now 21 and attending the University of Washington and majoring in linguistics. He’s still struggling a bit (who wouldn’t be), but working hard to find his way. I have no doubt he’ll get his life sorted out and land on his feet. He IS Jill and Hank’s son!

The last time I did an update on my mom, she had just starting dating Bill. She ended up marrying him. While he was a nice guy, he was also a little weird. I can’t say we were thrilled with this decision, but he was a help as her health started to decline. Somehow she became convinced that moving to Arab, Alabama was the right thing to do, and nothing any of us could say or do would talk her out of it. She moved there in Feb. 2014 and died there on 12/26/14. She is missed very much, but no doubt enjoying her reunion with Jill in heaven.

Last time I updated my family status, I mentioned that my husband (Brad) and I were about to have our first grandson. Reeder was born on June 27, 2011 – Jill’s birthday. How cool is that! Reeder also has a sister now, Hunter Rose, almost 3. And Reeder and Hunter have a cousin, Wesley, also almost 3. Wesley and Hunter were born exactly 7 weeks apart. So we’re up to 3 grandkids – hoping for Wesley to be joined by a sibling at some point. In addition to all that, Brad and I moved from West Seattle to Burien almost 2 years ago. We’ve been joined by 2 Corgis, Shadow and Abbey. Last October I had both of my knees replaced – a huge improvement over the nasty arthritis. I will also be retiring (finally). After 27 years at The Boeing Company – I will be out the door on May 20. Hoping to do some teaching and whatever ministry opportunities present themselves.

Kim and Bill are still in Marysville and also enjoying retirement. I lost track of the grankid count on their end, but their are a few – some they haven’t been able to meet yet. Kim’s been feeding her horse-racing passion with trips to all the triple crown races (one a year for 3 years), and I think the Santa Anita Derby and maybe some others that I’m not aware of.

Mark is still working at Boeing and still showing and breeding Cardigan Welsh Corgis. His girlfriend, Leo, is also a breeder – so they have a huge amount of Corgis at home – not to mention a couple of teens/young adults. It’s a fun place to be.

Scott and Bev have moved to Kenmore. They are two of the kindest people ever. Whenever I talk to them they are always helping somebody with something.

I think that’s all for now. I don’t know how many people are still reading this, but would love to hear from some of you. God Bless!




8 Comments leave one →
  1. Dayna permalink
    March 23, 2016 10:47 am

    Thanks Debbie for the update I still miss Jill but plan on seeing her in heaven one day…..

  2. March 23, 2016 10:54 am

    Thank you for the updates, especially on Daniel. I’m thankful for Jill in so many ways… This fall would mark 20 years since I first met her in a moms’ forum. I’m thankful that God used her in my life.

  3. Sandy Bartell permalink
    March 23, 2016 10:58 am

    Hi Debbie,

    How wonderful to hear your updates, although I am sad to hear that your mom passed away. Jill and I worked as technical writers at Boeing (I’m still here for the forseeable future) for several years. Even after Jill joined the FAA we would get together here and there for lunch, so we did keep in touch, however infrequently.

    One of my favorite authors said that “life is a series of comings and goings.” It sounds like that is very true for your family and for you. I am glad to hear that Daniel is doing well and is at the University of Washington. I know both Jill and Hank would be VERY proud of him. And I’m not surprised that he’s studying linguistics given what his parents did. 🙂 I can imagine that he’s still struggling with what was a very heavy burden on a young person, but I’m sure with the wonderful support system he has with both family and friends, he’ll do well and thrive.

    Congratulations on the new additions to your family! Stay well and keep us all updated when you can.

    Sandy Bartell

  4. Laura Hirschfeld permalink
    March 23, 2016 12:12 pm

    Hi Debbie,

    Thank you so much for the update! I ‘m so glad to hear Daniel is doing ok and has loving family and friends to support him, even after losing his parents. Like TulipGirl, I met Jill 20 years ago this month through a moms’ forum, and I miss her beautiful writing and wisdom.

    Laura Hirschfeld

  5. Cassie FAM permalink
    March 23, 2016 1:53 pm

    Hi Debbie,

    Thank you for the update. I’m another forum mom friend of Jill’s and I think of her often and am so happy to read Daniel is doing well. He is on my mind a great deal too.

    In solidarity with Jill, many of us still hate pink and refuse to buy into any of that and every October I shout from the rooftops about her.

  6. March 23, 2016 3:15 pm

    Thanks, Debbie! It’s nice to have a chat with Jill’s friends again! I’ve been kept very busy doing executor and trustee work after Hank passed away, but you’ll be glad to know that, after renting Jill & Hank’s house for a couple of years to Debbie’s two step-daughters and their families, we finally managed to sell it to a couple who got a big enough loan to rehab (modernize) the place, so you know it’s going to be a home they will love and care for. You might also appreciate that I have the final estate tax return on my desk ready to file — woo hoo! I’ll continue to manage the trust fund for Daniel until he turns 30 and it becomes his. Jill left a really nice life insurance policy to take care of her boys. 🙂

    On the horse racing subject, we went to the Kentucky Derby in 2012 (I had the biggest hat, and got on the news), the Preakness in Baltimore in 2013, and the Belmont Stakes in New York in 2014, to watch California Chrome almost manage to win the Triple Crown. If he hadn’t got his hoof injured when he left the starting gate, who knows? Also in 2012, in November, we went to Santa Anita to watch the Breeders’ Cup races. Since those, we’ve also been to Turf Paradise in Phoenix (where our grandparents took us as little girls on Sundays after Mass), Golden Gate Fields in San Francisco, and several times to Portland Meadows and Emerald Downs. In fact, we’ll be at Emerald Downs on Saturday to see if California Chrome can win the Dubai World Cup, the richest race in the world, with a purse of $10 million! That’s also where we went to watch all of American Pharoah’s big wins. Retirement is being fun – hard to figure out how we had time to go to work before!

    • March 23, 2016 3:36 pm

      Oh, and we’re going to Santa Anita again in November for Breeders’ Cup, and next year to Del Mar race track in San Diego for Breeders’ Cup. Soon, we’ll figure out when we’ll be going back to Kentucky for a more extended trip – there’s just no horse place more electric than Churchill Downs!

  7. RACHEL permalink
    March 23, 2016 4:33 pm

    Thank you for the update. I’m another of Jill’s internet Forum friends, and still miss her humor and writing. She was one of the most elegant people I’ve met, and such grace and wisdom. It’s good to hear Daniel’s update – we on the Forum think of him often, as he is so near our children’s ages. Like Cassie, I hear Jill’s voice every time I see the whole “Pink” campaign.

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