At 47, I have yet to meet or know a person who hasn’t known the sting of death. Whether it be a friend or family member, loss can be life altering and if given the chance, we would surely turn back the clock and have them back in our lives once more. Tomorrow is not promised and today seems so short. Maybe we forget from time to time, but it becomes overwhelmingly obvious that life could never be long enough to save a broken heart from crumbling. What would you do if you could save time with the ones, you love the most? I think Jim Croce nailed it with the lyrics of his song, Time in a Bottle, words flowing from the heart from someone who knows what it feels like to have cherished a being we were Blessed to have in our lives.
In January of this year, my husband and I lost a beloved friend, Wendy Hall. She ran an amazing race in this marathon we call life, she surely left her mark on innumerable hearts, ours included. The lack of her presence surely made this world a little less bright and a little colder. Two weeks before Wendy passed, knowing the end was drawing near, we spoke all the things in our heart that had gone unspoken. We vowed to keep her essence alive by continuing to speak of her and the amazing person she was. She was a very humble person and looked at us as though we had bestowed a great honor upon her, but the honor always was and always will be ours. We thanked her for her friendship that in a divine way, changed us for the good. We truly are better people having known her.
My husband once told me his grandmother said, “If you stop talking about people when they pass, they’ve died twice” and we were determined this was not going to be so with Wendy. We surely would have saved time in a bottle with her and when I was approached to write something in her honor to be placed in the Wilmington Time Capsule, I knew this was my opportunity to keep our memories of her alive well into the future.
I don’t know if I will be here in 50 years and I’m sure that may be the case for many, so I wanted to share what people 50 years from now will read and know about our friend named Wendy. To our Beloved Friend, we love you more!
In Loving Memory of: Wendy B. Hall
Memories of Wendy
For those who may read this now and for those who will read this in the Future, I would like to share the Life and Spirit of a Wildlife Advocate Icon name Wendy Hall.
Wendy had a Mission to create a World where humans lived in harmony with Nature. She was an endless voice that spoke for those who could not speak for themselves, believing all living things deserved compassion and respect. She knew that alone; change would be long and difficult. She believed the Children were our future and that if they were mentored and taught compassion for nature, they would continue to be a light in the darkness. This belief compelled her to reach out to the youth who could carry on this mission. Keeping the hope alive that people would continue to be Guardians of Nature and all of its inhabitants. Wendy had more compassion for this mission than anyone I have ever known or have seen. Her amazing spirit fueled the endless time she dedicated and the profound sacrifices she made on her journey. In her younger years, she served people as a nurse and volunteer ambulance driver and emt. In her later years, she served animals by becoming a falconer and licensed rehabilitator and purchased a 50-acre parcel of land in Wilmington that she built the Adirondack Wildlife Refuge on. The Refuge was a sanctuary and forever home for animals that had been injured and no longer could survive on their own. Over 50,000 visitors a year came to The Refuge to learn about nature and better understand how to have a cohesive relationship with Nature.
Even more outstanding than her position as a Guardian of Nature, was her presence as a Friend and Confidant. She was called a Friend by hundreds, perhaps thousands of people. The distance of her love surely encompassed the Globe, and people from around the World came to her for knowledge and help and to just be in her kind, graceful presence. Her time for interactions with people was short but divine.
Wendy was small in stature, approximately 5’ 6”. She was consistently clothed in hiking shoes, cargo pants or jeans, a T-Shirt and what kids in 2022 call hoodies (hooded zip up sweatshirt). She so loved Chocolate and to her good fortune, about a mile from where she lived was a little shop called Adirondack Chocolates. Hopefully you who read this 50 years from this time will still be able to visit. If you do find Adirondack Chocolates in your time, eat a piece in Memory of her. There wasn’t a creature or thing on this Earth she lacked compassion for. She was an extraordinary artist and the beauty of her pastels could outshine any photograph. She engaged with people no matter what the topic was and encouraged others to let their dreams fly. She loved hugs and blew kisses from her fingertips.
On January 17, 2022, Wendy succumbed to terminal cancer but her Spirit remains alive and well in the hearts of those who loved and remember her. I leave you with these Words of Wisdom to encourage you, to remind you that with heart and determination you are powerful beyond measure. Conquer your fears and find your greatness. Fight the Good Fight for Creation.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
Your playing small does not serve the World.
There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
Its not just in some of us, its in all of Us!
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.
As time allows, I have been working on a book to honor Wendy and all she meant to this World. If you met or knew Wendy, and would like to share a story of her and what she meant to you for this book, please email me (email@example.com) your story and I will do my best to fit it into the book I am working on.
Beautifully written Jackie! I was thinking about her the other day. Thanks for posting this.
I hope you are doing well! Thank you so much! We truly loved Wendy and it was a Blessing to have her in our lives! Wishing you all the Best!
This was wonderful to read, Jackie. I will always value your friendship. Not much of a writing Summer for me. I seem to spend all my free time up in Moose Alley, where I look for my favorite critters and reminisce about my 46 years with the love of my life. I love you and Kevin, and will never forget how helpful you both were in helping Wendy gracefully exit this life, while consoling her friends and family. Steve