Sunday, April 20, 2008

Godspeed Vernice Griffin

I attended a memorial service this weekend for a remarkable woman/friend/patient. The service itself was remarkable as Vernice had prepared a slide show set to music of her life. But truly wonderful was the woman who outlived her 3 month pancreatic cancer prognosis by 2 years.

In 2006, Vernice had returned to work as a visiting nurse. As she drove through northeast Denver, a gunman walked in front of her car when she pulled up to a stop sign. He looked her in the eye, arm rising and gun cocked in hand, fully prepared by his cold and mocking gaze to shoot. He leveled his gun, and Vernice told me that she considered whether or not this was an easy way out of her battle with cancer. In what must've seemed like a lifetime but perhaps was a second or less, she chose life and ducked. The bullet took out a piece of her wild mane of auburn hair, but Vernice lived on for another year and a half as if her pancreatic cancer was nothing more than a chronic annoyance.

Now that's grace under fire! Good-bye Vernice, you will be missed.


Cilicious said...

I bet that slide show was bittersweet. Vernice Griffin sounds like a strong, brave and focused person.

JeanMac said...

A very nice post. Vernice was a strong lady - in the face of a gun, I think I'd faint.

Mauigirl said...

Wow, she sounds like quite a woman. And to live that long with pancreatic cancer is pretty amazing.