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Bruce, Caroline

The Passing of a Friend

Her name was Debbie Scales. I first encountered her on an Internet mailing list for users of the JAWS screen-reading program. She ran this list, and I was astounded by the way she dealt so empathetically with people who were struggling to learn the program. She was patient, understanding, and extremely knowledgeable.
As time went on, Debbie and I struck up a friendship. I learned that in addition to the qualities already outlined, Debbie was warm, thoughtful, and wise. The incredible love she felt toward her husband radiated from the e-mails she sent me, and I soon learned to respect this wonderful lady immensely, and before long she was also a confidante. We would share our frustrations, we'd share laughs, and we were just there for each other. In July, she was the first person with whom I shared an extremely important aspect of my life, which was then just developing, and I found in her an ally and an encourager.

Debbie has long had health problems. The utter lack of bitterness she displayed despite tremendous odds against her was inspirational, to say the least. She was so grateful for the love and support of her husband and her friends, and she had a laudable zest for life when many lesser people would have turned their head to the wall and done their best to shut out the world. I consider Debbie a role model, a mentor, and a very dear friend.
I just learned that Debbie died in her sleep after a biking accident burst a blood vesel in her brain. She leaves behind her family, who have lost a loving wife and mother: a strong yet sensitive person who touched many, many lives and will be missed by all who really knew her. My prayers go out to Tom and the kids. Your loss is shared by many, just as Debbie's life was shared by many. you are not alone, we grieve with you.

Comments

Very cool post. I sent several emails back and forth with Debbie a couple of months ago while she helped me create scripts for a recipe program. She told me some about her health problems, but she really did come across as being very positive and upbeat in her messages. I wish I'd had more time to get to know her.
That was beautiful. She will indeed be missed by many. Hugs!
I'm sorry about Debbie buddy. I will keep her family in my thoughts and prayers.