I truly have never met anyone like her, nor will I ever again. She carried the most incredible joyful presence that smothered you in complete assurance, that yes, we are all worthy of love.
You could often find her singing while baking a batch of cookies with dogs and parrots at her feet and some other broken wild creature that needed a refuge to heal before being released. In that sense too, she took you, loved you, fed you, clothed you, warmed you, and gave you refuge until you realized how beautiful of a person worthy of love, you were. She shone light into the darkness of all our hearts. She was a voice of yes, do it, go for it, in a world of nay sayers. She was courage in the face of fear.
And she did it all while sometimes, heaven forbid, wearing bright colored crocs. If they would have sold bedazzled ones, she would have been the first in line. It was these eccentric, sparkly, truly unique expressions of Lorelie that we all loved and cherished so much.
Lorelie loved life. Whether it was opening american's mind to other cultures or hosting the many kids from across the world and integrating them into American culture. She took everyone out of their box and created a meaningful experience of culinary adventure ladled with heartfelt conversation, and full of laughter. Her laugh is another one of her most memorable attributes. Even her parrots thought so. The times I lived with her I wasn't sure if she was watching a Tyler Perry movie (we've seen them ALL together as true die hard fans do) or Iago the African Grey was imitating her. Either way, the sound made you laugh too because it housed that much joy.
Her and I had a routine when together. We had our coffee, ate some ethnic food or one of her super health supplemented lemon alkalizing smoothies, went on a walk with the dogs and came home to sing karaoke together. These later years we used her microphones and stereo set, but most people remember Steve at the piano, Lorelie front and center leading worship and a group of us joining in song the most natural way people commune. She sung like an angel and always downplayed it. I sung like a broken record player that had just been drowned and she still put me on stage to sing with her. That was her way though, uplift the person over the profit. And I'm sure I lost us some offering donations when they led some church events.
Lorelie never let life overcome her. Whatever happened she looked ahead at a brighter future and created immense life around her wherever she was. Animals, plants, color, music, art. The chaos of creation was gorgeous to her. Put her somewhere and within a week it would turn into a mini garden of eden brimming with life. Sometimes we would go into her newly blossomed garden, pull out the canvases and paint. She painted better than me but made me feel good about my lopsided waterfall that looked like a melting popsicle. Her's would be a colorful bouquet or landscape so vibrant it had to come from some wealth of happiness inside of her. I loved the comfort of her homes. Bright funky furniture, piles of books and music. Cabinets with healing supplements and corners of pantries with decadent chocolate or pea snaps. Sometimes I had trouble which coffee mug to choose because I didnt know if I wanted the vintage starbuck one or the cheesy I love doggies paw printed one. On our costco trips together I often wandered to the book section while she snuck off to pick out some undies and camisoles for me to surprise me with when I got home. Because every mom shows love by buying you what you need not what you want.
She believed in Jesus too, but a real one. The one who got his hands dirty with you, sat and ate with you, washed your feet and was there for you. The one eating and dining with the beggers and sinners. She walked the way Jesus walked, unafraid into the lives of the people that needed her most.
Which is why her tragic ending on this world, to begin one in the other has left so many of us empty. Lost. Feeling motherless, friendless, hopeless, without the presence of the one who loved us so much.
What I do know, is what we can do, is give back.
The Cruther's are a family of integrity and love. You could not raise such a woman of faith and love without being it themselves. They now must look upon their own cross, in the same way Mother Mary did, at their own child, and trust in a greater purpose. And her children, her greatest legacy, are left to put the pieces of this back together.
And us, those also effected by her legacy and love are left to grieve, but we are also left with the ability to partake in memorializing her memory.
Lorelie was a mother to me, a friend, a sister, a mentor, in essence - my everything. She housed and fed and clothed me and loved me so many years I could only hope to give back to her a fraction of what she gave to me. And today I am a great woman because of her love.
I am here to help the family by supporting the costs of her memorial. By your willingness to donate we can extend apart of ourselves into the memory and love of the woman we so deeply cherished. We can relieve her family of one burden of grief which is often the hardest. We can help impact the relief of financial strain so they can properly grieve, properly bury her, properly take their time and if we raise enough, create a lasting legacy for all of us to witness as the rock upon which her truth and love will be engraved.
The funds raised will help them but also give all of us around the world that she impacted a chance to participate in honoring our love for her.
It only takes a moment to make a massive impact. Every moment, and every dollar, from skipping a cup of starbucks one week (which she loved, Macchiato style) or a larger donation for those who have ability to donate more - is one great way each of us can power together in momentum to make a massive impact. Lorelie would never have asked anyone for money, but we all know how much she would cry and be honored to see her family helped.
All funds will be designated to the family overseen by her sons. The memorial will be April 6th. We thank you in advance for making your contribution to this family by taking a moment NOW to reach out and extend an act of love through giving. Please donate now, to help make an impact.
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