BRIAN BLANSETT, Shawnee News-Star
I was working in the garden a week ago Saturday when I got a strong sense that I should go in the house and spend time with Dianna.
She hadn’t been feeling well and her breathing was even more difficult than usual. So I went to the store and bought a pretty card and wrote a few lines telling her how much she meant to me.
She liked the card and we had a nice visit, sitting quietly in the living room. Six hours later, she was in the emergency room, gasping for breath and facing the death that we’d known was coming for 10 years. The pulmonary fibrosis had finished its course and left her lungs so scarred it was impossible for her to move air.
She was unconscious much of the next two days, but she emerged for some extended periods of clarity. We took full advantage of them, telling her things that we wanted to make sure she heard and understood. I told her how proud and honored I was to be her husband and I whispered in her ear a few lines from a song I had written for her:
In the cool of the evening, when the dew lies all around
And twilight comes to find me as soft as a robin’s down,
Your memory follows me like a shadow on the ground.
I’ll always think about you when the summer sun goes down.
She could barely talk, but she said it was beautiful and asked for it to be sung at her funeral. In her eyes was an excitement I hadn’t seen in years. She knew she was about to be freed from the curse of her disease. She told me she was ready to go and I knew she meant it.
At 8:33 Wednesday morning, I held her hand as her courageous, caring heart beat for the last time. While our children and I hugged in her hospital room and cried for our loss, Dianna was filling her lungs for the first time in 10 years and sprinting down the streets of gold.
Posted on Mon, May 19, 2014