Wednesday, July 3, 2013

In Memory of a Wonderful Friend

Several days ago,  I never dreamed that I would be writing this post today, especially on a happy occasion such as America's Birthday week... But---I lost another good friend on Sunday night --and have been very very sad this week.

I have known REIDA RANKIN since childhood  (we even went to Kindergarten together), and she has always been a very special friend.  And for those of you who have followed my blog for years,  you may even feel as if you knew Reida.  She's part of my Getaway Girl group ----four childhood friends who have been getting together every year since we all turned 50 in 1992.  There are 15 posts about these four friends on my blog (listed on my sidebar).  If you want to see any or all of these posts,  click HERE.

All four of us  (Reida,  me,  Susan Hollifield Daugherty, and Nita Holding Wilson) were born during the summer of 1942.... After high school,  we all went our separate ways for many years... Once we turned 50,  we decided it was time to start getting together once a year for 4-5 days of fun and fellowship.  We did that for many years...

THEN--one of us,  Susan,  found out that she had breast cancer... She fought it --but the cancer ultimately won.  Susan died in June of 2011.   Our little group went from 4 to 3.... And the sad thing is that the three of us never got together again after Susan's death.  Reida has been fighting Multiple Sclerosis for years ---and had gradually been having more problems recently.  However,  I had no idea that she was THIS sick.  She has pulled out of it so many times --so I thought she would live forever...  When I got the call Monday afternoon from her sister,  I was SHOCKED...  Now our little group is down to TWO....

BUT--the good news is that I have many many happy memories to share...  Reida is the only one of us who never got married... In fact,  her Daddy lived with her for many years --and he was well over 100 when he died...

Reida was the type of friend I could talk to about ANYTHING --and know that it wouldn't be repeated.   She and I had many fabulous conversations about LIFE through the years... She LOVED George and was so happy when I married him.  She loved my sons --and always asked about them when we would talk.  What a wonderful friend.  I will miss her FOREVER....

I'll close with 3 photos of the Getaway Girls!!!!!   As I've said many times,  there  are friends and then there are REAL FRIENDS.  Childhood friends are the BEST of all...  Reida and Susan are sitting up there on the "pink cloud" watching down and shaking their fingers at Nita and me.....

Kindergarten (1947)  Susan and Nita --at the back on left next to the window;  Reida is sitting at the table on the right end;  Betsy is at the table on the far side on right --with white bow in my hair!!!


Taken in 1993 by my son:First row:  Reida, Betsy, Nita;  Standing behind Betsy is Susan.


Taken about 1997: first row:  Betsy and Reida;  2nd row:  Nita and Susan
God Bless You,  Reida Rankin... Rest in peace, my friend.

Pray for George and me on Friday as we drive to Kingsport, TN for Reida's celebration of life service.

NOW---switch over to my Photo Blog for a great July 4th photo.  Click HERE.

Hugs,

60 comments:

Small Kucing said...

My condolence to you, Betsy

Ms. A said...

Betsy, my heart goes out to you, her family, friends and all that will mourn the loss of Reida. Thoughts and prayers.

eileeninmd said...

Sorry for you loss, Betsy! Sending my prayers!

Fun60 said...

To lose such a dear friend is difficult. Those friends that we have known since childhood know us so well that however long it is between meeting up it only seems like yesterday. They are the best of friends and I am so sorry for your loss. As we go through life we can count upon one hand those true dear friends. I am glad you have such good memories of times spent together. Take care.

Ann said...

I am so sorry for your loss

diane b said...

That surely was a long lasting true friendship. Sorry to hear this sad news. You have my sympathy.

Pam =) said...

Betsy, I am so sorry for your loss of your dear friend Reida. Sending my prayers to all who loved her.
Hugs

Beth @ E. lizard Breath Speaks said...

thinking about you both ... so sorry for your loss. travel safely. ( :

lots, & lots of rain here. not sure when it will stop.

Arkansas Patti said...

Aw Betsy, I am so sorry. Our childhood friends are no doubt, family. They knew us when and still loved us. When that raw empty pain eased, remember the good times and smile with those memories.

W. Latane Barton said...

I am so sorry, Betsy. Losing anyone you love is tough business. My heart goes out to you.

CJ STITCHING AND BLOOMS said...

Hello Betsy,
I am so very sorry for the lost of your very dear friend.. How very wonderful that you all had such a great friendship for so many years of your lives.. My heart goes out to you... Hugs Judy

Carol Z said...

My heart breaks for you, Betsy. What a blessing to have friends from childhood and what a heartache when we lose them. My prayers and hugs will be with you and George this weekend.

Terri said...

I'm so sorry for the loss of your bosom friend- you and George be careful when you drive to Kingsport. Blessings!

Beth said...

I am so very sorry for the death of your friend. Your pictures of the 4 of you are precious. Your memories will live on forever!

Ercotravels said...

Indeed, it's a symbol of true friendship. my congeniality with you forever, Betsy! God bless you.

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Betty Manousos said...

dear betsy, i'm so sorry for the loss of your friend.
sending my thoughts and prayers!

(((big hugs)))

Catherine said...

I am so sorry about your friend Betsy, I love it that you have been friends forever and I love the old black and white photo. So sweet. Sounds like you will keep a lot of wonderful memories of her in your heart. Beautiful.

Sending you hugs my friend!
xo Catherine

Daisy said...

Betsy, I'm so sorry to hear of the passing of your friend. I know you have many great memories of times spent with her.

linda m said...

I am so sorry for your loss. I will certainly keep you and George in my prayers as you travel on Friday . Prayers have been said for Reida's family and friends.

Linda said...

My heart aches for you, Betsy, and for all who loved Reida. You were blessed to have enjoyed her friendship for so many years.

That 1993 photo is gorgeous of all of you.

Marcia said...

So sorry for the loss of your dear friend. How distressing to have that happen. I hope you and the one remaining of your foursome will be able to get together in happier times.

Nancy said...

Betsy, I am so sorry for the loss of your longtime friend. I know you will cherish the many memories you had of her.

You and George be careful as you drive......

Hugs to you...

DeniseinVA said...

How sad for you Betsy, I am so sorry. Sending you a big hug and I'll be thinking of you and George on Friday.

Sandra said...

so sorry your friend is gone, I love the kindergarten shot and the one below it. happy memories for you. nice tribute to her memory

Karin said...

My heartfelt sympathy in the death of your dear, sweet friend! Such sadness! No doubt the memories you've shared together will become all the more powerful, vivid and meaningful to you! Hugs!

Out on the prairie said...

i lost two classmates this last month, a sign of our wearing out before going to that better place

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Words fail at a time like this. Sending hugs and prayers to you.

Lynn said...

My heart goes out to you today and on Friday. Nothing can take away the precious memories the four of you made together.

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

Oh I'm so sorry to hear this. She sounds like she was a wonderful friend to you Betsy.

Katie Clooney said...

So sorry for your loss. One of my dearest friends has been battling ALS. It hasn't been easy for her. Your blog is sweet. I will definitely be back!

Sharon said...

Having just experienced the tragic death of a friend myself, your situation is especially poignant for me. Please be careful as you and George drive - Friday is going to be a nasty travel day.

Sylvia K said...

Always so hard to lose a good friend. My thoughts are with you and your friends today, Betsy.
Sylvia

Blackberry Lane said...

I am so sorry. I enjoyed these pics from happy times. You four were a blessing to each other.

Donna said...

I am so sorry about the loss of your long-time friend.

Janice K said...

I am sorry to hear of your loss. I remember you putting up posts in he past of your get togethers. I have a group of grade school friends also. We meet 2 or 3 times a year. There were originally 5 of us, but now there are 4.

A week ago I was at the funeral of a friend that I had known from my earliest memories of childhood. While there I was able to spend some time with her brother and his wife, who had moved away from our area about 40 years ago. We had such a wonderful time talking and sharing some of the adventures of our lives. Afterwards I almost felt guilty for having such a good time at a funeral, but then this morning during some quiet time I thought, "That is what heaven is going to be like--only so much better." I guess we never really have to say, "goodby." It's just "Until we meet again."

Ginny said...

Oh NO Betsy!!! I am so very sorry. It is hard for me, too, to see my friends start dying. I remember the one picture, she is a pretty flaming redhead. Betsy, she was so very lucky to have you as her good friend and confidant! It is wonderful to have someone you can say anything to and they will not judge you. How long has it been since you girls have gotten together? It is amazing to me that you were all born in the same summer of the same year. She is at peace now.

Marie said...

Oh Betsy, I am So SO sorry! The loss of a close and dear friend, especially someone you have known your entire life, is so hard...like losing family! I know how very sad you must be right now. God bless you as you gather the good memories around you for comfort and lean on Him and on your loved ones for comfort and strength!

imac said...

The older we get,
more chance of losing a friend,
But the pain gets worse
as time goes by,
because weve known then longer,
I feel so sorry for you and all your group my friend.

Hoping thoughts and prayers will ease the pain a little.

Small City Scenes said...

Oh Betsy what a sad day for all of you. We have a new star twinkling so brightly in the heavens now. Great memories and how wonderful to have friends--and I mean real friends--for life from your earliest days.
My 2 friends that I had known since grade school and that I saw ever so often are both gone now and way way too early.
We will pray for you and george and the family also.
MaryBeth

Rose ~ from Oz said...

I will be thinking of you Betsy and George, I feel so deeply sad for you, it brings home to me to continue to care for and nurture my incredible 3 friends with whom I've been mates for well over 30 years and we too have special get-to-gethers.
I am deeply touched by your beautiful tribute to your brave and beautiful friend Betsy.
Hugs and love
Rose

Nellie said...

My sympathies to you, Betsy, at the passing of your friend. I pray for safe travels for you. {{{Hugs}}}
xo Nellie

FlowerLady Lorraine said...

I am so sorry for your loss dear Betsy. I pray you and George have a save trip for the service.

Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

Rose said...

I just can't imagine what you are feeling...cannot imagine losing any of my childhood friends.

RoeH said...

Such cute pictures! What great memories.

Grandma Bonnie said...

I am sorry to hear of your loss. I am sure you have lots of good memories that will last a life time.

SquirrelQueen said...

I am so very sorry to hear about your loss Betsy. Reida may be gone but you will always have the memories.

amanda | wildly simple said...

I'm so sorry, Betsy.
What wonderful friendships to have had in your life, and to keep in your memories.
We should all be so lucky - I really do think friends are like flowers in the garden of life.

Big Dude said...

It's hard to lose good friends, but a lifelong friend must be especially difficult.

Betty Manousos said...

happy 4th of july!

xoxo

Lynda said...

So, so very, very sorry Betsy. Friends who will keep a confidence are few and far between. Even though we have confidence to see our Christian friends again, the hole in our heart hurts tremendously right now.

LV said...

I understand how you feel today. I lost a dear friend this week as well. It was sad in a way and a blessing in another. She had no family and we lost to her Alzheimer.

Mary said...

I'm sorry for the loss of your friend, but I know the memories you have will comfort you. God bless you.

SweetMarie said...

It's so neat that you have that photo from kindergarten! So sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
hugs to you,
Marie

ladyfi said...

I'm so sad for your loss and her family's loss too.

Chatty Crone said...

I can identify with you - lost two of my dear friends too. The pain and loss really never goes away. It does seem like you will have really wonderful memories - which I am glad of for you. Love, sandie

Linda Gross said...

I am sorry for the loss of your friend, Betsy. I will be thinking of you and George tomorrow.

Twilight Man said...

My deepest sympathy and heartfelt condolence to you and her family.

I remember you posted about these good friends. I can feel your pain and sadness right now. Please take it easy and those beautiful memories will live on.



I hope George will buy you an ice cream today. It helps to keep my spirits up with ice cream.

Heidrun Khokhar, KleinsteMotte said...

Loosing a precious friend so suddenly is very very sad. You are in my heart and my thoughts go out to you.
Hoe fortunate you gals were to have spent time making memories and those shall carry forward. God Bless you Betsy and your friends too!

Kathleen McCoy said...

My condolences for your heartbreaking loss, Betsy! Losing a special friend like that is so very hard. But the love and devotion you've shared through the years are memories you'll have forever. Such friendships are life-altering in the best of ways.

Busy Bee Suz said...

Having friends for as long as you have is a blessing. I'm so sorry that Reida was taken so soon in her life; what a fun person. Heaven has another sweet angel.
Love to you and her family.
XOXO