Funeral Fund for Donna

My mom, Donna, went into cardiac arrest last Saturday.  She was simultaneously admitted with pneumonia and sepsis, and we knew she was in for the fight of her life.   (She had already been in and out of hospitals and nursing homes for over a year due to Pulmonary Hypertension, liver failure, and problems with her kidneys.  She even lost the ability to walk which broke my heart.) Unfortunately, she has not made any progress this week.  Only her brain stem is working, performing tasks like blinking and swallowing,  and tests revealed significant anoxic brain damage.  Not even a pain test during the last EEG caused any waves to spike on the screen.  It just showed flat lines with short bursts of activity, and this is indicative of brain death.   We will have another test performed on Monday to confirm her prognosis, and then we will have to make the tough decision to let her go.  My mom will soon be with Jesus, and though that gives me great comfort and she will be healthy, joyful, and walking again, it is also emotionally and financially devastating to our family.

        I am starting this fundraiser to take care of my dad.  I know that will not be able to cover the cost of her funeral, and I really don't want him to have to take out a loan and bury himself in more debt to bury his best friend and loving wife of 35 years.   He has his own struggles with Black Lung after working in coal mines for many years, and I worry about my dad struggling to pay for the medicine that is keeping him alive too.  I do not want to lose a second parent anytime soon.  

         Anyone who knew my mom personally knew that she was full of life.  She was always cracking jokes and loved being around people.  She never missed a school function, and that's saying a LOT.  I was involved in EVERYTHING! Even when I was in college, my parents drove two hours every weekend for four years to watch me cheer.   Although we never had a lot growing up, I watched her sacrifice time and time again for me.  She made sure I had a letterman jacket and prom dresses, and she did without.  I remember her wearing this blue terry cloth tank top for years and years...until it was riddled with holes.  Why?  To provide for us.  

     My mom  taught me so much about the importance of taking care of family.  Now that I'm a mother, I realize the time, energy, money,  and patience it takes to raise children.  I would do ANYTHING for my kids, and I learned that from my mom. 

     I never imagined I would be saying goodbye to my mother at this stage in my life.  I thought I'd get to share many Christmases around the tree watching our kids, her grandkids, open presents voraciously.  I thought I had many more years of phone calls and advice.  I thought I would be able to call and just vent about life or celebrate successes with her for a lot longer than I was granted, and that stings.  It hurts.  It's going to hurt for a long time.  I know I will miss her for the rest of my life.  Every celebration will feel just a little more somber, and I know I will forget, pick up the phone, and start to dial her to share something from my life only to remember that she's no longer with us.

     I know this is going to crush my dad more.  They had an amazing marriage... still always holding hands.  He always called her his Sweetie Pie and cracked jokes that made her roll her eyes and throw some sass his direction.  They never had a secret between them.  They were a team. They were best friends. They were ONE, and now he's being reduced to HALF.  That cleaving process is hard enough on my dad.  If I can help alleviate the stress of trying to come up with money I know he doesn't have, that will help me continue my mom's legacy of always providing for her family.   Thanks for helping me honor my mom's memory through this GoFundMe.  God Bless.
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Organizer

Amanda Nickerson 
Organizer
North Canton, OH
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