In honor of Jan Stuart.
I first met her in 2000. I moved into Simpson to start life as a college student, and her daughter, Sandy, was my roommate. Sandy quickly became an important part of my life, as did her sister Amber and her mother, Jan. I only saw Jan a few times in my life, but each time she made such a lasting impression. She felt like family.
Sandy went on to babysit my sisters whenever I was unable too, and was there throughout many of my little sisters milestones. Her mother was always there encouraging, sending messages through Sandy, and always offering a hug those few times I saw her. Sandy was in my wedding as a bridesmaid. Her mother sent warm wishes and was so excited that I was marrying Nick Ristow, someone she actually knew before I did. Our families seemed to be the type that always had a connection of some sort, even though we had never officially met before Simpson.
And Jan always remembered the last conversation we had had. She always asked about my sisters, about my mom, about Nick. She always had a hug for me. I will forever remember her hugs. Jan didn’t have a lot of strength due to some health problems, and so her hugs were so soft and so gentle and so very full of motherly affection. I don’t know if it’s true, but I imagine she was a distant mother to a lot of people.
Jan had an innocence about her that drew people in. They wanted to be close to her because they felt as if she cared. They knew she cared.
Of course, all of this I write from having only a few interactions with her spread out over the course of eleven years. But in those eleven years, she made me feel as if she cared about me. She was a very real person.
Jan sent love and prayers to me when I lost my own precious mom.
On August 6, Jan passed away in a house fire. Her legacy will be carried on through her husband Joe, her 3 daughters, son- in- laws, and grandchildren. Please lift up prayers to Jesus for this family that has lost so much. Their pain is great as they struggle with the sudden loss of someone so precious.
Their home was also lost in the fire, along with precious irreplaceable items. Their loss is great. In talking with Sandy, I asked her how people can help. She said that the family is in need of everything right now. Items that were in the fire, such as clothing and necessities need to be replaced. They also need money for food, and money for unexpected expenses that this tragedy caused. The daughters, son-in-laws, and grandchildren need money to pay for travel expenses as they drive long distances back and forth between their homes. .
If you would like to help, please send monetary gifts and/ or encouraging cards and letters to:
The Stuart Family, 49725 Hwy 96, Seiad Valley, Ca, 96086.
Also, feel free to comment encouragement and support here on this blog post for the family to read. Thank you for your prayers.
For Jan. Who can finally dance. She can walk, run, leap. She can do things she hasn’t been able to do in a long time. She and my mom both, together, praising Jesus.