Raegan Elizabeth Boden, Remembered by Sharon Black

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Publisher’s note-as a parent, I can not even imagine the pain of this time. For Sharon, being a neighbor and friend, this is an emotional piece. My prayers are for this family and this community. Thank you to Sharon for how the community has come together to be there for this family. Safely Distanced. Socially connected.

Tonight there was a parade in my neighborhood. It was the type of parade people are doing now because of the social distancing from coronavirus.

When it was first announced in my church that my neighbor girl had been diagnosed with a brain tumor, my heart sank. I didn’t know it even though I live right across the street from them. Raegan’s mother is a teacher and a coach at Kensington, Kansas and all three girls were involved in sports, so they were a very busy family.

John, Raegan’s father, is the caretaker of the golf course.

Raegan graduated from high school and went on to college. Then her cancer redeveloped. {{more}}

She passed away on March 19th. What made it worse is the social distancing of all events. The service was filmed and shown on the mortuary website.

Usually, in a small town when there is a young person’s death, the funeral service is at the high school gym so all the friends and school mates can attend. Of course, it is always the family’s choice.

Smith Center Health and Rehab posted on their Facebook page that they would be having a parade to show their love and support. They would start at the rest home which is only 1 long block away from the house. They would be riding the route around the neighborhood from 7 to 8 Saturday night.

The caravan started and Boden’s garage door went up. The family was sitting in the garage. It was cold and windy otherwise I’m sure the family would be closer to the street. Skeeter the dog was also there. I ran over to them and asked permission to do a story on them for Positive News for You. (I didn’t participate in the driving since I live right across the street.) So I filmed some of the cars. The family was all smiling. People drove by slowly, waved and honked. Many vehicles went past several times. Some cars roared their engines and spun their wheels and some cars were silent. A few vehicles had a dog looking out the window. There were new cars and older cars, pickups, and vans.

I had a feeling of pride and sadness. How dare cancer takes a young vibrant person? How dare this coronavirus hit when there are grieving people who need love and support and can’t have it because of social distancing. But tonight people won and coronavirus lost.

Sharon Black is from Smith Center, Kansas. We welcome her to our team of volunteers.

Smith Center KansasSharon Black has been writing for many years including newspapers, short stories, and as a publisher. She was born in Nebraska and has lived in Kansas most of her life. In her hometown of Smith Center, Kansas, Willa Cather’s hometown is to the north and Bob Dole’s hometown is to the south. Sharon is a press release writer for the National Parks Arts Foundation, and writes for b U n e k e magazine. The biggest project she has accomplished is co-writer of the TV movie Home on the Range. The movie is about the song, which is the state song of Kansas and the lawsuit surrounding it in the 1930s, and finding the rightful author of the song. Sharon is distantly related to the Mississippi writer Eudora Welty.

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