Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Love Don't Stop

Love don't stop, it goes on forever.
Love don't stop, and it never will.
Love don't stop, one day we'll be together
Love don't stop, and I'll sing this song to you,
On Heaven's highest hill...
- Billy Falcon

On Tuesday, September 11, 2001, Lauren Grandcolas, a thirty-eight-year-old advertising executive for Good Housekeeping magazine, felt as if she had caught a little bit of good luck.  Ms. Grancolas had been in New Jersey for her grandmother's funeral.  Her flight home to San Francisco and to her husband Jack was scheduled to depart from Newark Airport that morning.  Whether by accident or deliberate design, she arrived at the airport earlier than expected.  Early enough in fact to trade in the ticket she held for her flight for an earlier cross-country flight:  United 93. 

Ms. Grancolas and her husband Jack were very much looking forward to the birth of their first child.  She telephoned him that morning prior to takeoff to tell him that she had caught an earlier flight and would be home several hours earlier than anticipated.  Jack was asleep.  He did not hear the phone ring.  Then, after all hell broke loose on Flight 93, Ms. Grancolas called home again.  Again, however, her efforts to reach her husband proved unsuccessful.  He was asleep and did not hear the call.  What he ultimately heard was the message she left for him on the couple's answering machine in which she calmly told him that "we have a little problem on the plane."  She also told him that she loved him and asked him to tell her family how much she loved all of them.  

In one unspeakably cruel moment, Jack Grandcolas had his whole life forcibly taken from him.  Lauren, his wife, his best friend and his partner was taken from him by a group of murderous cowards.  And with her, the couple's unborn child.  Lauren Grandcolas was a remarkable woman and in the thirteen years since her murder, Jack and Lauren's family have never stopped keeping her alive and sharing the depth and breadth of her strength and her character with the world.

Not too long prior to her death on September 11, 2001, Lauren Grandcolas had started to work on a book, which was intended to be a "How-To" guide for women.  In 2005, through the good efforts of her husband and her two sisters, "You Can Do It!:  The Merit Badge Handbook for Grown-Up Girls" was published.

From hate's destructive seeds, Lauren Grandcolas' family has sown something beautiful:  The Lauren Catuzzi Grandcolas Foundation.  The Foundation's mission is "to provide funding for projects and activities benefiting women and children's health, education and welfare", which it has done since it was established in 2001. 

Jack Grandcolas and his late wife Lauren's family are proof that Love indeed does not stop.  On September 11, 2001, evil thought it could kill it.  It could not.  It did not.

And it never will...


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