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Opinion

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Patti Leary
07/03/2014 11:06 AM

We have lived in Amador County for over 30 years — raised our kids here, had a business here, made lots of friends here and totally enjoyed the togetherness of this small county.

In the last couple of months, we have had a double tragedy in our family — the loss of our son, Sean Leary, on March 13, and the loss of our daughter, Angela Schlegel, on May 4. Losing one child is devastating enough, but losing two is incomprehensible. Your mind goes numb and your body goes into wobble mode. To say nothing of the hurt, pain, agony and disbelief you go through.

During this time, we needed to organize a memorial and do an obituary for the paper. I was so depleted of thoughts and energy. I didn’t want to go out of the county to do the buying or preparing for the memorial and I could not wrap my head around doing the obituary. Not being one to ask for help, I didn’t even know where to begin. The fine people of Amador County stepped in and said, “Let us help.” I can’t thank them enough. So, I am using this forum to thank them.

So, starting with the Amador Ledger Dispatch, I would like to thank Carolyn Schmitz for doing a wonderful cover story combining the two children’s stories and Joe Svec in the Obituary Department for correcting my spelling and for putting the obituary together properly for me.

I’d like to thank Kam Merzlak at Merzlak’s Signs for helping with the graphics for the memorial programs for both children (they were beautiful!) and for patiently helping me with my computer faux pas as I was trying to get things together.

I would like to thank Barry at Motherlode Printing for not only his professional suggestions but because he too went above and beyond helping me get the programs for the memorial together.

Thank you Marylou Mullan for helping me create the insert for the memorial programs. It was appreciated.

Thank you to the girls (Kim and Melissa) at Claypool’s Gift & Home Co. They not only helped me pick and choose what I needed for the memorial (decorations, table settings, etc.) but they even put in special orders for me to make sure I had enough of everything. Try getting that kind of help out of the county. They were wonderful and helpful.

Thank you to Salye at Ridge Road Garden Center for suggesting and supplying the beatiful Red Maple branches for the centerpieces for the memorial. They were perfect! I was totally at a loss of what to do there and she came to my rescue.

Thank you to the American Legion Hall (Nicki Guzman and Robert Saracino) for helping us organize and have both memorials in the hall.

Last, but not least, a thank you to Chesney and Cindy from the Blue Moon Cafe & Catering Company for catering our memorial. The food was wonderful and the service impeccable.

Thanks to all of these people, I did not have to leave the county to get all these things done so wonderfully and professionally. They all cared and were more than willing to help.

I’d also like to thank (from the bottom of my heart) all our family and friends from far and near that joined us to celebrate the lives of both our children.

In closing, all I can say is, if you live in Amador County, you are blessed and if you are lucky enough to raise your children in Amador County, you are doubly blessed. Please remember, too, to shop locally. We do have the professionals out there that can help you.

Thank you all.

Copyright © 2014 Amador Ledger Dispatch
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