We unexpectedly lost a member of our blogging community over the weekend. Tina Downey, who blogged at Life is Good, died Saturday evening in Longmont, Colorado. Tina was a wife, mother, daughter, sister and friend whose life ended far too soon.
I met Tina in February shortly after I heard about the April A-to-Z Challenge. I was a new blogger, was intrigued by the Challenge, and was scrolling through the list of those organizing the Challenge, and came upon the blogname: Life Is Good.
What’s not to like about a blog with that name? It was “a sign”. Hub and I drink from Life Is Good mugs, and wear Life Is Good hats, and I wear Life is Good knee sox all winter long.
Somewhat timidly, since I had barely ventured into the blogworld, I left Tina a comment on her “About” page. The next thing I knew, I had a four-paragraph response from Tina exuding personality, enthusiasm, humor and encouragement – “join the Challenge!”, she said. “You won’t be sorry, and I will help you every step of the way.”
And she did. Not only was she a consistent commenter, but she and I exchanged numerous emails throughout the Challenge – all while Tina was tirelessly carrying out her duties as one of the Challenge captains and making sure her team of minions was fulfilling their tasks.
Tina wrote lovingly about her Swedish family, culture and traditions during the Challenge, and her regular blog was a meld of memories, family tales, opinions and humor. Tina was a strong presence in the blogworld; she wrote boldly, had a large following, and made newcomers feel like longtime members of “the club”.
Maggie, another of my favorite bloggers, wrote recently about Connectors. Tina was the quintessential Connector. I don’t think I would have joined the A to Z Challenge if Tina hadn’t welcomed me as she did. Which means I wouldn’t have met most of you. That is one small example of the many ways Tina touched YOUR lives, even though you might not know her or have followed her blog. I blog, in part, because Tina made me feel like I belonged.
I am so saddened at Tina’s death, and for the loss her family now has to live with. I am glad her suffering is over, but she was taken far too soon, and that is difficult to understand. My prayers go out to all who knew and loved Tina, and I will keep her with me always in my writing.
Even if you didn’t know Tina, please visit Life is Good and leave a comment for her family. Our blogging community has lost a valuable and cherished friend.