Wednesday, April 21, 2010

EULOGY FOR SHANNON WATSON - BY HER LOVING HUSBAND

I am not going to try to summarize Shannon's life over the next
few minutes, because it would be an impossible task. She has
accomplished more in her 29 years on this Earth, than most people
could hope to accomplish in ten lifetimes.

Shannon's mission in life was to help others, who like her had
been diagnosed with cancer. Her other mission was to inspire
people to improve their health and live a life of love to the fullest.
Based on the outpouring of support we have been showered with
over the past few days, I can confidently say that she accomplished
both of her life's missions.

Shannon was a self-described - cat loving, tree hugging, outspoken,
healthy, happy survivor who was told that her life would be short...
but she was determined to take control of her situation and
completely ignore the timeline given to her by her doctors.
Her goal was to become completely healthy while helping
everyone she could on the way.

She was many things to many people. To me she was my wife,
my best friend, my soulmate and my hero! If you spent any
length of time with her I can guarantee you walked away a
better person. She had an infectious laugh, and a smile that
could warm your heart.

She touched countless lives, and inspired countless others to
live life to the fullest. She was not defined by her cancer diagnosis,
but did use her diagnosis as a vehicle to share her story with
thousands of people. As easy as it would have been, she never
felt sorry for herself and never adopted a "why me?" mindset.

She always said that she was glad that she was diagnosed. Being
diagnosed at the age of 25 gave her perspective. It allowed her
to focus her energy on what really matters in life. It also allowed
her to meet so many other inspirational and amazing people -
many of whom are in this church today.

Even until the very end, Shannon was more comfortable with the
thought of her passing than she was with the impact that it would
have on her family and friends. We can let her rest at ease, and
honor her memory by living our lives to the fullest...by finding
a silver lining in every situation. Don't let anything, or anybody
hold you back from chasing your dreams. Get outside of your
comfort zone. Challenge yourself, demand the best in life, and
don't let fear or self doubt stand in your way.

Lastly, at the end of each day ask yourself, "Did you do something
that makes you happy today?"...and make sure the answer is YES!

-KEVIN WATSON-

26 comments:

  1. Kevin,

    I never had the chance to meet your or Shannon but I've followed her blog for quite some time now. I'm very sorry for your loss. I have learned a lot from Shannon and I will work hard to do something that makes me happy every day in honor of her.

    ~Lisa Dreher

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  2. I am so sorry.

    I hope you don't mind, but I've been following Shannon's blog for months as a friendly observer. My son is also dealing with cancer and I attempt to keep folks updated via a similar site on blogger. One day, I hit the "next" button, and happily, this is where blogspot took me.

    I was cheered by her jaunty attitude, and took comfort in her approach: don't give up, and as long as we are breathing, we should keep on LIVING.

    There is nothing that anyone can say to comfort the people closest to her, her husband, friends and family and I don't want to use any of those awful cliches that I hope never to hear myself.

    If I found her compelling over a one-way medium, one can only imagine what a force she was in person!

    God speed, Shannon. Thank you for sharing your story, and for being a blessing to others.

    Sincerely,
    Marilyn F,
    Regina, Sk, Canada

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  3. Kevin, I am so deeply sorry for your loss...and also for ours. I didn't know about Shannon's death until right now, as I have only known her through her blog.

    I am only 34, but I have already had several friends my age be diagnosed with breast cancer, and known of several more. We just said goodbye to one of those dear friends a few months ago. Shannon's blog helped give me another perspective on the journey my friend's have taken.

    Her life, strength, and attitude have taught me to let go of the things that don't really matter, and to savor and appreciate every moment.

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  4. Kevin,

    I am so sorry to hear about Shannon's passing. I didn't know until I just read this blog. Your eulogy is beautiful, as was Shannon. I remember her spunk and spirit and how she approached life in a positive manner, no matter what she was faced with. I will keep the lessons I learned from her close to my heart and try to remain as positive and happy as she wanted us to be. My thoughts are with you and your family. If there is anything I can do, please let me know.

    In Memory of Shannon,
    Jessica

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  5. I am so sorry for your loss. I am a friend of Shannons. I always read her blogs. I know that you are an amazing person by what she wrote about you. She was lucky to have you by her side. Stay strong.-----Dan Carron

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  6. shannon and i went to school together... and i used to cut her hair many years ago..,, we had art class together and we used to get in trouble from laughing and not listening to the teacher... shannon was brilliant.. she was beautiful stunning.. and amazing , loving.. always so relaxed.. truthfully a down to earth soul.. i do not have many words, except thank you.. for being so strong.. and showing her what she wanted to see in her last days..she was blessed to have you,, as you and all of us were blessed to have known her..... shannon is an angel,, and i know she will be watching over you ... god bless your soul.... love to you and all of you're family...

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  7. I never knew Shannon personally but followed her blog. My heart broke a little today when I read this... I am so sorry for your loss. She's such an inspiration to me and got my husband eating sprouts!!!

    We were truly robbed...

    A Martin
    Columbus, OH

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  8. I never met Shannon, but I was following her blog. I myself was diagnosed with breast cancer last year and she has given me so much hope. My heart goes out to her family!
    God bless!

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  9. Kevin,

    I had only met Shannon a few times. Various parties or group outings with mutual friends, that sort of thing. It didn't take being informed about her diagnosis to know who she was. I remember her as the woman with a smile that made you look twice. A certain glow about her that stuck in your head. She was the kind of person that would pass you on the street and when you saw her, you knew she was the kind of person you would want to be friends with. I knew she was a great person before she ever said a word.

    I would get occasional updates from mutual friends and it was very odd that since I wasn't close to her, it hurt to hear what was going on. I am not usually like that. She changed me and I never shared more than a friendly greeting with her. I always found it strange that when someone said her name, I could see her face clear as day. You are without a doubt, a lucky man.

    Be strong brother. Only time will cover these wounds.

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  10. Thank you for posting your eulogy.

    I've followed Shannon's blog from the beginning and connected with her through the Crazy Sexy Life website and on Facebook. I looked forward to her updates and laughed and cried at her news. When Shannon didn't post after March 25, I wrote about her on my own blog, knowing that something was wrong. The next day I heard that beautiful Shannon had died.

    On Monday I drove from Chicago to Detroit to be there for her memorial. I had followed her cancer journey from the beginning to the end and needed to be there to say goodbye.

    The memorial was beautiful, your eulogy said it all. Shannon changed us for the better. Thank you for sharing your journey. She is missed. Always...

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  11. Oh, Kevin. I just clicked over hoping that I would read about another beautiful vacation or some other kind of upswing. I can't think of better words, but I had it in my head that I would read something beautiful, and in truth, I did.

    I'm so very sorry for your loss, and the loss that your and Shannon's family must be feeling. Know that a bit of her lives in each of us that came to visit, and I sincerely hope that you find some comfort in that. Thank you for the update, and I wish you nothing but the best.

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  12. Kevin,
    I was so sad to go to my fav blog and see your beautiful eulogy of your wife. I was diagnosed with Advanced Colon Cancer in Oct of 2008. Of course after being in shock and at a complete lose of word, I went and joined the Crazy, Sexy, Cancer Blog looking for information and fellow cancer friends. I loved the site and was looking at other members profiles...and out jumped your seet Shannon's. Well after reading her entire blog, and learning this chick was a wealth of information, kind soul, true leader, cat loving, tree hugging, loving wife, loving daughter,but most important a girl that was trying to help and inform us other cancer girls how to keep living in the face of cancer. I knew that I would mark this blog as a favorite! I decided to start my own blog for my family and friends. Now mine is not as informative as Shannon's but, my family loves it. I loved that she was so open in sharing her highs and her lows..I loved how you were such a awesome husband! I loved how your families were so support of her. I lost my best friend 4 months ago(she was diagnosed with my same disease 2 weeks after me) The lost was devastating to me. So seeing Shannon's post made my heart so sad. I'm grateful that she is not suffering anymore. Just going to miss being a cyper friend from San Diego checking in to see a friend I never meet. My regret is that I never posted to her.. So Shannon thank you for sharing your life with all of us..I have learned so much! Carpe Diem
    Kevin ...life will never be the same..
    Debbie from San Diego, Ca. wwwlive2jett.com

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  13. Hey kev.Guess im typing this cuz its too hard to say. I just read the eulogy again, and i cried like the first time i heard it in the church. Not so much because its sad, but its true, and floods my mind with memories of a best friend who i was lucky enough to kno for most of my life.I think the words were as great as you were for her. She loved you sooooo much, and wasnt shy bout telling me how great you are.I couldnt have asked for a better person to marry my friend. through shannon, i will have a friend for life in you.

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  14. Dear Kevin,


    I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my dear wife, Kim, in February to this horrible disease. A friend of hers who knew Shannon had forwarded us Shannon's blog some time ago. So I would visit and read her latest posts- as inspiration and as a reminder to live every moment fully and to love every soul we meet along the way in this precious life. Heaven was meant for people like Shannon and Kim. I just wish they could have stayed here with us a little while longer. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Peace and Love,

    Andrew

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  15. Kevin,
    Big hugs to you and your family from Austin, TX. Thinking of you and sending you strength.

    Jennie Owen

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  16. Kevin, I know that I will never be the same after having read the eulogy you gave for your beloved Shannon. Thank you so much for sharing it with all of us.
    I know that you are probably still in shock from losing your wife but I want you to remember that there are better days ahead. Your life is not over and Shannon would want you to make the most of it.

    With wishes for hope and peace,

    Pam

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  17. Kevin ~ My heart broke when I read your post. I was so sad to hear about your sweet wife. I never met either of you, I just stumbled across this blog and have been here ever since. Shannon seems like such a happy, positive lady even with all she went through. Her smile just lit up every picture and I can only imagine what a blessing it was to spend time with her. May your memories comfort you and may our prayers help you through the hard times, too. We will keep both you and your wife and your families in our prayers.

    Shawna, from Round Rock, Texas

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  18. Kevin,
    I did not get a chance to meet you at the memorial service. You gave such a beautiful eulogy. I'm sure Shannon was smiling down as you spoke! I met her last fall at the Bras for a Cause fundraiser. I am a childhood friend of her Uncle Dave's. When Dave told me about Bras for a Cause, I volunteered to work the fundraiser with a friend and we plan to do so again this year. I am an almost 2 year survivor. I just wanted you to know I am keeping you and your family in my prayers during this difficult time. I thought about Shannon especially yesterday because I believe it was her 30th birthday. Please take care of yourself and keep her memory alive!! I will look for you at the fundraiser in September.
    Barb Lamb, St. Clair Shores

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  19. Missing Shannon & her wonderful posts... hope your doing well Kevin!

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  20. I too am missing Shannon's blogs. I keep re-reading old entries to find more tips.

    Kevin, have yo thought about publishing her blog into a book?

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  21. Ditto...
    I miss her words and pictures..I miss her...Kevin sending you Strength and peace.

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  22. Kevin,
    I learned about your amazing Shannon from my friend Elissa Bisaro. I am so sorry for your loss. I see she was an incredible person. It would have been my honor to have met her. I ride 50 miles this weekend in Pelotonia 2010, Columbus, OH to support cancer research. My team has raised $36k for research! I will ride in Shannon's honor. God Bless you. Kriss Skruck, Columbus, Ohio

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  23. Kevin, I too rode in the Pelotonia this past weekend in Columbus, OH. On my right leg, I wrote the names of my survivors. On my left leg was those I ride in memory of. Shannon's name was on my left leg. I never knew her but I'll never forget her...

    http://www.pelotonia.org/ride/riders_profile.jsp?MemberID=72405

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  24. Riding for you again this weekend, girl. Miss you...

    Andrea

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  25. So very sorry for your loss Kevin. I can not imagine what you family is going through. This is the first time I have visited this blog. However, after reading some of her posts, I am blown away by the attitude she had about her struggle with cancer. Some fall into a state of depression. Some become bitter as they fight cancer. Shannon somehow kept a positive attitude the entire time. God bless your family!

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