Hello Friends and Family,

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Memories: Good and Bad

Every year the holiday season rolls around with the lights, the greenery, the presents, the music. However, for me there is a different feeling — for it was during the holiday season in 1997 that Kona was suffering through the terminal phase of her ovarian cancer. She spent most of that time in bed while I administered to her every need — yep, I was a 24-hour-a-day nurse, while still handling my day job with HP as best I could.

Hard to believe that was 18 years ago come Wednesday. Those memories are so fresh, so bitter.

This year, I took on a special project and gathered all the photos that I could find of our lives together and scanned them — some 320 shots requiring 4GB+ of disk space — so now I have electronic copies of all.

I thought I might share some of those photos with you so we can all remember those happier days.

Kona and I both loved Hawai‘i (it goes without saying that I still do). We both had a feeling that we were Hawaiian in a previous life — and perhaps we had been ipos (sweethearts) in that previous life — and that our spirits had searched for each other until we actually met in this life.

Besides loving Hawai‘i, we both loved playing golf together. Whenever we traveled, we would try to schedule a round of golf or two. Combining our love of golf and love of Hawai‘i, we were here standing on a green of the Manele Bay Golf Course on the island of Lana‘i. From their website, "Designed by Jack Nicklaus, Manele Golf Course boasts dramatic, unspoiled natural terrain as a stunning backdrop, and every hole offers majestic ocean views." I couldn't say it better myself. However, I would add that the greens were elevated and devilishly difficult — apparently that is a common Nicklaus design trick.

This photo is actually from 1997, after Kona's diagnosis, surgery and chemotherapy — our last trip together. She actually seemed to be progressing so well — she had stood up to all that adversity, was strong and happy. Soon after we returned home to Phoenix, we learned that the chemo was not working and that the cancer was spreading.


Much earlier than the previous photo is one from a visit to my parents in Maryland. Mom and Dad fell in love with Kona — exactly as had most people who met her. She just had that warm, welcoming personality that broke down barriers accompanied by a smile that would melt your heart.

I look back and remember all the good times Kona and I had. And to think that it was only three and a half years that we were together. We were lucky to have that time of loving companionship and I wanted more — but it was not to be — one does not have a say in such matters. Which brings me to my common refrain when I remind you to cherish your every moment with loved ones — you never know how many of those moments the fates will allow.

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com