I am devastated. Wilma saw the posts on Facebook and told me.
Sharon and I had a special bond that started on Dave's Garden and was cemented during her visit to our home some years ago. I have to chuckle, even in my sadness, when I recall how we met. She and I had both been writing regularly on DG. I got a D-mail from her (she had obviously been reading my articles, the commentary of others about them, and my responses. I could tell that she was really curious about me. Soon she started peppering me with questions about my life.
Then she realized that I might think she was coming on to me. She sent me a short D-mail: "I'm only interested in your brain," she declared. I laughed so much my sides hurt.
Her visit with us was special. She wanted to know everything about everything. One time she was a bit perplexed, so I asked her if there was a problem. She said she couldn't visualize how the Amanas fit into the state of Iowa. We all know how visually oriented she was, so I brought her a map of Iowa. She was overjoyed to see it and much relieved when she could finally fit us into the proper area of the state.
My most cherished memory of her visit was a walk in the woods, just the two of us. I shared stories of my childhood in the forests above the river valley, just as she had shared hers on DG. She was delighted to see wild strawberries in bloom, as well as May Apples, raspberries and gooseberries. At one point, knowing the problems with her legs, I held my breath as she jumped over a small inlet from the lake nearby. I could just see me fishing her out of the muck. I needn't have worried. She cleared it with no problem. I was amazed. When Sharon put her mind to something, it got done!