RIP Sweet Brenda

What a difference a year makes.  Just a little over a year ago we had no idea my brother was sick and would be leaving us so soon.  We did know is daughter, Brenda, was battling breast cancer but she’d been battling it for so long we just “assumed” she’d continue to fight and win her battle.  This morning (Sunday) Brenda lost her hard fought battle.  She was a warrior and she battled it valiantly for as long as she could but it finally got the better of her.

This is Brenda at my mom and dad's 60th anniversary party August of 2010

Brenda leaves behind 3 beautiful children.  Her son Zander (from her husband’s first marriage) and her two beautiful girls Kamyl and Faith are all under 10 years old.  Her daughter Faith is so named because her mom was pregnant with her (only a few months) when they found the breast cancer.  Brenda always said that Faith saved her life.  If she hadn’t been pregnant they wouldn’t have found it.  The doctors actually wanted her to abort the pregnancy and immediately seek treatment through chemo and radiation.  She refused. She allowed them to perform the unilateral mastectomy and after Faith was born she started her long hard treatment of chemo and radiation.

She did have a short period of time where they said she was cancer free but it came back and came back aggressively.  Several times the doctors called the family in saying she would only last a few weeks or days and she kept fighting and battling back and defying all odds.

Brenda and Stephen with the kids, August 2010 (pic taken by Hatcher Portrait Design)

When my brother found out he had cancer she was the one to take him under her wing and show him “the ropes” with his radiation and chemo treatments.  She even tried to schedule their treatments together so they could go together and be company for each other while they received their treatment.  That didn’t last very long as they soon decided that my brother was past the point of the chemo and radiation helping. She was heartbroken but tried to stay strong and positive and upbeat for him.  When he passed away she was devastated because she was in the hospital and unable to “say goodbye” to him.  She told me many times that even though Monte wasn’t her biological father that he was closer to her and more of a father to her than her own biological father.  Monte had been her father figure since her early teens and he always called them his daughters and he couldn’t have loved them anymore if they had been bound by blood instead of just marriage.  They were bound by heart.

Brenda in turn raised her step son with the same love and discipline that Monte showed her.  She had raised him since he was an infant so he couldn’t have been any more hers if she had given birth to him.  She didn’t treat him any differently because he wasn’t her biological child.  If anything, he was probably cut him more slack because she wanted to make sure there was no bias in how he was treated.  She was a wonderful mother to all three of her children.

Monte & Ana with all the kids and grandkids, August 2010 (pic courtesy Hatcher Portrait Design)

Brenda was a loving mother, daughter, sister, aunt and niece and she will be missed so much by so many.  Please keep her family in your prayers; her husband Stephen and their beautiful kids, her sister and her family and especially her mother Ana. In the last In the last ten months Ana lost her husband (my brother) AND her daughter and NO parent should ever have to lose their child no matter how old or how young.

I think this was the last family picture they had taken, not long before Monte knew he was sick.

Brenda was only 28 years old.  She was much too young to die for any reason.  CANCER SUCKS!  I pray for a cure.  I know it won’t bring Brenda back and it won’t bring my brother back but maybe some one can find a cure before we have to lose more mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles or friends.  Please, please, keep those sweet little kids in your prayers that their whole family can remain strong and get through this loss together.


About pegbur7

South of the Mason/Dixon Line
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26 Responses to RIP Sweet Brenda

  1. terrepruitt says:

    Oh, Peggy, my heart goes out to you, your family, and Brenda’s friends. Also my thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  2. Of course I don’t know any of these people but your story made me feel as though I did. My condolences.

  3. Katie says:

    Peg, I am so sorry. and I will pray that your family will find peace. She was so young and such a lovely family.

  4. So sorry for your losses.

  5. Carol says:

    It is frightening how prevalent Cancer seems to be – When I was having chemo it seemed the Cancer Treatment Center’s waiting room and treatment room were always full or near full. Now that husband is having chemo we’re experiencing the same thing. It is a nasty foe and wins far too often. My heart goes out to you and your family in this trying time – your double whammy heartbreak.

  6. Mark says:

    Those poor little ones. To lose their Mother at such a young age. My heart is breaking for them. Please know that we are out here thinking about you and your Family.
    Take care.

    • pegbur7 says:

      Thank you Mark. I really appreciate it. I just feel so badly for the kids and for Brenda’s mom. Losing your child or your spouse is bad enough but both in less than a year? Simply horrific.

  7. Oh my gosh. How much more can that family go through? My thoughts and prayers are with you and everyone in your family. She has a beautiful smile.

  8. Ron says:

    OMG, Peg, I am so sorry to hear this because I remember you not only posting about Brenda, but also sharing about her whenever you and I spoke on the phone.

    Such a lovely, lovely tribute to such an amazing soul. I know she looks at this post and smiles at your beautiful words.

    And yes, I will share prayers and energy with her family; supporting them at this time.

    And here’s a BIG hug for you……..

    (((((((((((((((((( Peg ))))))))))))))))))))))

    X ya, dear friend!

  9. Gretchen says:

    Oh Peg, I’m so sorry. That is just absolutely tragic – SO young. There has been so much cancer in the last week that I’m starting to think it’s some kind of a sign from God, I just can’t figure out what it’s a sign of. My prayers are with Brenda and her family.

  10. Jen says:

    So sad Peg, What a horrible disease and it seems to have taken so many of your precious loved ones. My prayers are with you and them today and always.

    • pegbur7 says:

      It really has. I don’t even want to stop and think about how many friends and loved ones we have lost in the last couple of years to cancer. It’s way too many. Thanks for stopping by.

  11. Penni Ogle says:

    Awww Peggy,

    I extend my deepest sympathy to you and your family at this sad and difficult time.

    I know that you and your niece, Brenda were very close and that her passing will be very hard for you. I’m sure that you are thankful for the many wonderful years you had together. After reading your article, your niece was a very special lady. In the pictures above, she always managed a beautiful smile even when I’m sure she was not feeling her best. I can only imagine she was a joy to be around and will be missed very much.

    I know that this will be a hard time for you. I will be there for you to help you get through your tragic loss .

    My thoughts and prayers are with you& your family…your friend,
    Penni Ogle

    • pegbur7 says:

      Thanks so much Penni. She was a sweet sweet girl… and she really was WAY too young to have gone through this. She put up a hard fight and after five long years I know she was just exhausted from the struggle and at least she is no longer in pain.

  12. eof737 says:

    So sad! RIP Brenda… my condolences to her family.

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