Kristen Menzel

For most of her life, Kris was a bright, shining star. She twinkled. As a little girl she always had projects and goals. This was so into her adult life, and with fierce determination and persistence, her focus was to achieve those goals. She was ambitious and liked to work hard. Television bored her. She would rather be camping, sailing, riding her horse or hiking with her dogs. Her pets were an important part of her life.

She was comfortable with people of all ages and races, and from all social and economic levels. They were comfortable with her. If she knew someone was being treated unjustly, she would fight to make it right.

Kris was a volunteer at her church, youth groups, the SPCA, the Alliance on Aging, and even thought it a duty to serve on the election board at least once. She helped her dad for 18 years delivering food baskets to the needy at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

She had her human failings and flaws and may have added a few worry lines to her mother's face but she also caused the laugh lines to deepen and that is most important. She was fun to be with. She hated carrots. She loved broccoli and spinach and tuna sandwiches and corned beef with cabbage. Krissie had soft brown eyes, a dimpled smile, and the best hair in the family. She sparkled.

Kris liked to tease and gave us affectionate nicknames. We miss hearing those names. We miss hearing her voice, the way she walked, the perfume she wore. She twinkled.

Then the dark shadows of mental illness began to creep into her mind and the sparkle dulled. There is such limited knowledge and treatment of illnesses of the brain, a major organ of the body. She struggled so hard to get well using what determination she had left, but eventually the dark clouds completely obliterated all the twinkle and sparkle. In life, she cared about her fellow human beings. Organ donation was her final act of humanity.

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, Eternal love is where you are,