Monthly Archives: January 2014
It has been nearly a month since the passing of Kelly Hart, who fought a long battle with cancer. Her bravery and faith in God was a lesson and inspiration to all who had the privilege of knowing her. Although some time has passed since that day, the pain is still fresh in the hearts of those closest to her.
Her daughter, Kayla Borden, is beside herself trying to understand why, and as she does so, her life appears to be in a holding pattern, for she doesn’t know how she will recover. But Kayla didn’t realize that her mother affected those around her in a most special way. As she copes with the loss, those friends leapt in to action.
Kayla recently had a minor car accident that disabled her car. She was not hurt in the ordeal, but the damage to the vehicle would cost several thousand dollars to repair. There are other things, financially speaking, but the point is, friends understand well that it’s difficult losing the closest person whom you’ve had a lifetime bond with and having to cope with the rigors of life at the same time. It was her best friend. There’s no other relationship as strong as a mother and daughters.
Kelly’s husband in spirit, Bobby Harper, took on additional jobs to try helping Kayla. He understands the financial strain, and could use some help as well. As they heal, friends feel it is their duty to step up by spreading the word and helping with donation efforts.
Kayla loves music, so friends decided to look around for a band in order to do a memorial benefit that will not only help Kayla, but also celebrate the sparkling life of Kelly Hart. They didn’t have to look far. It just happened that Dade City band DC Country have members who are close to Kelly and the family, and it was decided without a second thought when asked to do the benefit.
“When and where,” said band members.
Lining up the memorial benefit was a challenge at times, but friends of the family pulled it off. The event was dubbed Have a Hart Memorial Benefit, and a Facebook page was created to spread the word. It goes without saying that friends piled into the social media site, with offers to assist in any way they could.
Organizers have announced the venue, and this serves as the press release for the Have a Hart Memorial Benefit. It’s slated for Saturday, March 22nd, at the VFW Post 4283 Hall in Dade City. The event begins at 4 PM, when dinner will be served. Pulled pork and sides will be offered between 4 and 6 PM. Children are welcome before 7 PM. VFW will serve all alcoholic beverages.
Further information concerning the event is still forthcoming, as volunteers scout local businesses for merchandise and services to be used in raffles and other activities. Thus far, there have been many commitments. All donors are urged to contact Have a Hart Memorial Benefit for instructions on how to help.
Have a Hart. See you there!
New York governor Andrew Cuomo on Friday blasted those against abortion, gun control and anti-gay activists, saying in a radio address on Friday, “they have no place in the state of New York.” He went on to say that he and the democrats are not the problem, stating, “[conservatives] their problem is themselves.”
Does he realize he’s referring to Americans?
People are outraged over the comments, mostly due to the obvious. American’s have the right to speech, life and the 2nd Amendment giving citizens the right to own firearms. Many are calling for his immediate resignation, but it’s unclear at this point if there will be a push for it among state politicians.
One blogger weighed in.
I used to take my family to upstate NY on vacations twice a year. We’d rent a lake house, take the boat with us and spend a ship load of money in NY. I hope the Governor understands that his policies are exactly why my hard earned money is no longer spent in his state. More importantly, I hope the residents and business owners of the area we used to stay in realize the Governor’s policies are why we no longer come there on vacation.
The gay and lesbian community have been activists for years, picketing for equality, non-discrimination and gay marriage. In other words, it’s a double standard; a proverbial foot in the mouth.
Americans in New York should grant his wish by leaving immediately. Take their business and tax revenue elsewhere. Perhaps then Governor Cuomo will see the error of his words.
guest writer, jenny timms
The only certainty we have in life is death. We never know how we are going to face our imminent end, nor that of a loved one, until we experience it. Losing my sister Holly in 1999 will always be the most difficult time of my life. She was my rock, my best friend, and my biggest fan. That hurt will never go away, but it has lessened over the years. I will always miss my sister, always mourn her loss, and always hold her dear in my heart. Only now, I can hear a song and not sob. I can think about her, miss her, look at pictures, or celebrate a holiday without the overwhelming feelings of grief and sadness. So friends, while we mourn the loss of our friend Kelly Hart, please know that it does get easier. Kelly loved to be silly and have fun, and surrounded herself with friends and family who enhanced her life and allowed her to be herself. She knew that she was loved.
A few years ago, I had a health scare. Perusing Facebook one night, I came across a post from Kelly that made me smile and cry at the same time. I messaged her to thank her for uplifting me. She replied, and that opened the flood gates. For reasons I still don’t understand, I opened up to this sweet girl I wasn’t real close to. We chatted back and forth for hours. She explained what I might go through, how important communicating with my doctor would be, and what to tell my children. She asked if she could pray for me, and did. Each day forward, she would message or text me just to make sure I wasn’t falling apart. She offered to go to appointments with me, talk to me, or cry with me. She was a friend who truly understood what I was going through and what I needed to hear. She didn’t sugarcoat anything. One day, she thanked me for being her friend. I thought she was crazy! Here is this girl who has a thousand-plus friends on Facebook, alone, and she was thanking me? I was in awe that she took the time to message me every day, post inspirational or silly pictures on my wall, or text me to say “hi.” I needed her friendship more than she needed mine, but she didn’t see it that way. That is the blessing we have come to know as Kelly Hart.
So, how do we move on? It’s going to be tough on all of us to recover. Recognize the 7 stages of grief and know that your feelings are normal and rational. We must, at this time in our grief, hold up and comfort each other—reach out to the friend you haven’t spoken to in years, forgive any past indiscretions, and seek help if you cannot work past your grief. Hospice offers free grief counseling. It is not shameful to seek counseling; it is shameful to be too proud to ask for help. If Kelly has taught us anything, it’s that friendship is important, love is essential, and that God will prevail.
When there’s a special person who attracts so many, the stories are different with every testimony. But the stories are all inspiring, especially when that person is facing the most difficult times of her life.
On January 4th, the world lost Kelly Hart-Harper after a long, brave battle with cancer at the young age of 40. Along the path of the battle, many were graced with her ever-present can-do attitude and positive outlook of the future. Most would have never guessed Kelly was fighting for her life, as she was always busy putting others before herself.
On social media, Kelly kept in touch with all, and those who knew her were always in awe of her strength and faith in God. Many of those asked, “Lord, how could you let this happen?” Kelly seemed to know and realize what many of us didn’t, as if there was a purpose for the entire ordeal.
And, there was.
At the viewing, I realized that Kelly affected us all differently, but the one thing we all had in common was that the affect was positive for each and every one of us. The pastor who led the viewing asked if anyone would like to say something in honor of our hero, and at first, it was slow coming. I thought about it a minute, but decided that this time was meant for those closest to her. And that’s where my experience begins.
Instead of getting up to say something, I asked myself, “What would I really say?” I looked around the church pews, realizing that many of the people there to pay their respects knew her only a short amount of time or as an acquaintance. Despite this, they still came; they still wept. It dawned on me that I was just like those who were drawn to her beacon of inspiration.
I first met Kelly in person last year, following a surgery. As Kelly would soon realize, I wasn’t there to talk to her about her procedure, nor was I there to speak to her about the prognosis. I was there to make her smile, and before I arrived at the hospital, I had doubts that I’d succeed.
I was wrong.
I’m still amazed at how receptive she was to me. She knew we had many mutual friends, but she never met me. On that day, she treated me as if she had known me for years; that I was just another part of the huge family who adored her. I was honored, and from that day forward, I wanted to know how she did it.
Kelly professed her love for God, and was never shy when telling others that her faith was the reason behind her smile during tough times. Kelly also wanted everyone to realize how short life is, and how we should never take a single breath for granted. Instead of complaining, Kelly used her illness to reach others – to instill the same conviction of faith.
About a week before she passed away, she told friends that she didn’t feel pretty anymore, and wanted to look like Cinderella for just one day. All of us got right to work, receiving donated items such as the dress, hair and nail specialists, tiara, limousine, and restaurant seating for at least 10 diners. We kept it under wraps, and wanted it to be a surprise for Kelly.
It was dubbed Operation Cinderella.
There were also donors willing to donate cash in the event there was something we overlooked. With all the items in place, friends were ready for Kelly’s wish to come true. She wasn’t asking for much, and in fact, didn’t really ask anyone to make it happen. I believe she said she wanted to look like Cinderella one more time as an expression.
The event was set to begin on Saturday, the 4th. But on the day before, Kelly was suddenly rushed to the hospital, where it was learned she didn’t have much time left. She was taken to Heaven on the day Operation Cinderella was to be set in motion. As disappointed as all were, I did feel that God had a better ball planned for Kelly. Probably complete with glass slippers and a pumpkin carriage.
Her prince, Bobby, wasn’t ready for her to go. But he showed the same courage as Kelly. We knew he was hurting, and we knew it would be a long, difficult road for him. He is yet another inspiration; he and Kelly belonged together.
So, there’s my rendition of a prodigy of faith. My testimony. It’s my hope that all who she knew embraces the lessons Kelly has taught, and it’s my prayer that she continues to look over all of us in our most difficult times, and smile at our best. Because, it’s what she did. It’s how she lived.
Kelly was put here to change the world.
Special thanks: Angel’s Tea Room, Dade City. Shay Worthing at Access Beauty Salon, Zephyrhills. Bon Chic Consignment Boutique, Dade City. Pat Fike at Thomas Auto Mart, Dade City. Olympus Limo, Tampa. Dade City Police. Publix, Zephyrhills. Hodges Funeral Home, Dade City. Dade City Church of God.