Many of you have Adventurers have followed here with great interest the story of Alice Pyne, an incredibly courageous English teen who faced down terminal cancer for the past five years.
I first wrote about Alice in A Teen’s Bucket List eighteen months ago, and provided updates in A Teen’s Bucket List – Update 1, Hey Alice! Good Works are Spreading Thanks to You!, Checking In on Alice Pyne).
The most recent update post, Alice Update: A New Charity Helping Others, shared how Alice and her family created the charitable organization Alice’s Escapes to help arrange caravan/hotel holidays in her local Cumbria for children fighting cancer and other deadly diseases and terminal conditions.
In the year and a half that I followed Alice’s journey, I have been amazed and humbled by their steadfast devotion to spreading the word about signing up as a bone marrow donor at one of the registries in the worldwide network. By heightening awareness, they also ended up raising funds – directly and indirectly - across the global.
Their ‘hook’ for attracting publicity was Alice’s own Bucket List of things she wanted to do before she died. With the assistance of others, Alice was able to check off many of the items on the list.
But it really wasn’t about giving Alice memorable experiences; she and her family made sure that it was always about raising awareness, raising funds, raising marrow donor numbers.
Yesterday Alice lost her battle, surrounded by her loving parents and dear sister.
Her mother Vicky announced on the Alice’s Escapes page on Facebook. I checked Alice’s website and the message is the same:
‘Our darling, Alice, gained her angel wings today. She passed away peacefully with Simon, Milly and myself by her side. We are devastated and know that our lives will never again be the same.
Vicky 12 January 2013′
Knowing this day would eventually come doesn’t make it any easier. Last night I said a prayer, and despite not ‘knowing’ Alice personally, I shed some tears for her and her family.
I’ve spent this morning in quiet introspection, and later I’ll go for a long walk in the sunny woods with Daughter. But as soon as I finish this post, I’m going back to work on a project that is near and dear to my heart.
Because as I wrote in the last update, everything Alice ever did and achieved in her seventeen years on this earth ‘reminds us all of the power of focused minds, loving hearts, helping hands and limited time.’