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RIP: Susan Palermo

Susan Palermo died peacefully at 7:24 am today. Her long, long journey through the horrors and realities of glioblastoma multiforme is over. Her fiancé Ed had been holding her as he'd wanted to be doing when the time came. He got up to use the bathroom and in the moment he was gone, she went, too. So many dying people wait for a moment when their loved ones are out of the room; that may well have been what happened here.

Bill Wagner was there last evening until 2:30 am. I'm glad he had a last chance to say goodbye, and that Ed had calm company through several of Susan's last hours.

To the best of my and Ed's knowledge, all funeral arrangements are yet to be made. Ed thinks the funeral will most likely be at Susan's church, Holy Name of Mary in Valley Stream, NY. Ed asks that the call go out for musicians; he wants there to be music and, in particular, he wants someone to perform Susan's song, "Ordinary Girls."

The video only shows a few hints of Susan's radiant smile. I'm thankful Ed has photo albums full of that smile in his company, in the company of so many of her friends. The images shine with vibrant life. They shine with Susan.

Much as we've known this was coming, the reality is different. It always is. As I wrote to Susan's friends this morning, may the coming hours and days treat us all gently, gently as we grieve, as we go through the full spectrum of emotions that accompany death. For me, there's relief that her long ordeal is over, that she no longer is confined to the physical realities of what GBM did to her body. There's profound sorrow for Ed's loss, for Bart's, for Rita's, and, yes, for my own, too. Susan's friendship was such a blessing in my life, in our lives.

Rest in peace, Susan. Except that typing those words reminds me how little they could possibly apply to the Susan I knew. She wasn't an ordinary girl in life, and I'm completely certain she won't be one in whatever afterlife brings her, either. And that is a Good Thing.


( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 23rd, 2011 03:28 pm (UTC)
Geri, I'm sorry for your loss, in this very hard year.
Nov. 23rd, 2011 04:17 pm (UTC)
It's not fair.
Nov. 23rd, 2011 04:52 pm (UTC)
Hard times. Glad she's found release.
Nov. 23rd, 2011 05:04 pm (UTC)
I am sorry for your loss. I am sorry for *everybody's" loss. I guess I'm glad that her suffering is over, but
this was somebody I had wanted to meet when I spent six weeks in New York in 1979, and I had never had a chance to do so.

Nov. 23rd, 2011 09:25 pm (UTC)
Condolences, Geri.
Nov. 23rd, 2011 09:51 pm (UTC)
I'm very sorry.

Nov. 23rd, 2011 10:41 pm (UTC)
My condolences.
Nov. 24th, 2011 01:04 am (UTC)
I'm so sorry. For you and all her friends and for Susan herself who had such a very bad year. *hugs*
Nov. 24th, 2011 01:41 am (UTC)
So sorry for your loss.

Nov. 24th, 2011 10:02 pm (UTC)
This was expected and yet so sudden. I'm so sorry, Geri. She was a great joy to be around, always lively, and she will be missed.
Nov. 26th, 2011 03:10 am (UTC)
I really was hoping I'd see her again. It's been such a long time, now, but still....
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )


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