Monday, April 1, 2013

Remembering an old friend...

I was going to write about my Easter weekend spent with my in-laws today, but something happened over the weekend that overshadowed the holiday for me and I just want to write about that.

If you live in Minneapolis, you probably heard about the hit-and-run that left a bicyclist fatally injured early Saturday morning.  I didn't hear about this until Saturday night when we had the news on before going to bed.  We were visiting Mark's family in rural MN and had been out in their hot tub that night, but happened to turn the TV on just as this story was coming on.  I had a weird sense of dread washing over me before they said the victim's name, and sure enough as the name was read I found myself gasping and burying my face in my hands.  The victim, 28 year old Elyse Stern, had been a very dear friend of mine when we were young.  Regrettably, I had not been in contact with her for quite some time, though I ran into her a few years ago and got to catch up on life.  But I thought of her often as I have many good memories of her.

One of my favorite memories is when we went on spring break together.  I can't recall what year this was, but I think it was somewhere around 8th or 9th grade.  She came with my family on a ski trip to Steamboat Springs, CO for a week.  I'll never forget getting caught in a white-out snow storm with her on the mountain, or rolling around in the snow wearing bathing suits then jumping into the hot tub.

Elyse was an incredible artist with real talent.  I regret that I didn't know her in her adult life, but I will always remember her as a beautiful and carefree soul.

It was a difficult experience to sit through church on Easter Sunday, having only heard this news a mere 12 hours before.  I didn't feel right about celebrating anything or singing all those "alleluia" hymns.  But then again, it felt strangely comforting to be celebrating the triumph of life over death.  I will never understand God's timing when it comes to death, but I will continue to believe that we are saved by His grace.


  1. I lost a friend this past January after her husband murdered her. We had been in touch minimally through FB, but had talked about a year prior when she was looking for a nanny for her son. We were by no means close, but hearing of her untimely death shook me to the core. Going to her funeral really helped me come to grips. I hope you're able to attend Elyse's funeral. I'm so sorry for your loss. I watched a news piece on her, and there is no doubt and was a beautiful woman.

  2. I saw that on the news. Any time I hear my age group mentioned, my heart stops beating. So sorry to hear that it was a friend of yours.

  3. I heard about this and it is so sad. My husband is a bike commuter and very active in the biking community so these stories always hit home at our house.

  4. I'm so sorry for your loss, what an awful thing to happen. :(


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