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My Cousin


About the Author


Largehearted I miss living in Europe, specifically Munich, GermanyI like to think out loud. Some of my ruminations can be found at beinganddoing.wordpress.com. I love to cook and eat, but hate to clean up. I tend to be confident in my opinions, but will change when presented with a compelling enough reason/argument. Find out more about Largehearted
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  • My Cousin

    Good morning everyone.

    I received word today that my cousin died unexpectedly. She was 45 and while she was 100% paced due to constant a-fib, she was never diagnosed with HCM. We are still piecing things together, but we know that she was ill with flu-like symptoms, when they discovered something wrong with her bowel. She had surgery and then her kidneys began failing. At 3 AM Tuesday morning she died, without family, in the hospital. Her two siblings had pre-deceased her and her elderly parents were away on a trip so she was alone except for hospital staff.

    Please remember Mariesa and Uncle Bob and Aunt Sadie in your prayers.


    God Squad co-moderator
    Nothing is as gentle as strength and nothing is as strong as gentleness

  • #2
    Leon, so sorry to hear of the passing of your cousin.

    Please remember Mariesa and Uncle Bob and Aunt Sadie in your prayers.
    Many Many prayers for you and your entire family as this time. Take care and be well.

    It's not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived.

    Dx in Feb/99. Obstructed. No ICD, no surgeries, no family history. 2 sons ages 14 and 6.


    • #3
      Leon, I'm so sorry for your loss. I will certainly be remembering your family and friends, esp Mariesa's parents in my prayers. What horrible losses they have suffered! Linda


      • #4
        I will be praying. I cannot imagine the grief of your aunt and uncle.



        • #5
          My prayers go out to the entire family during such a difficult time.

          Lynn Stewart
          HOCM 4/2002
          Cleveland Myectomy Crew 8/2002


          • #6

            My prayers go out to you and your entire family, 45 is young

            Diagnosed 2003
            Myectomy 2-23-2004
            Husband: Ken
            Son: John diagnosed 2004
            Daughter: Janet (free of HCM)

            Grandchildren: Drew 15,Aaron 13,Karen 9,Connor 9


            • #7

              I am so sorry. Please accept my sincerest condolences.

              I will pray for Mariesa and Uncle Bob and Aunt Sadie. And I will keep you and your family in my thoughts and prayers.

              And please know that her Angels were with her when she passed.

              With heartfelt sympathy,

              49 yrs. old
              Diagnosed at 31.
              Cardiac Arrest 2003, RF Ablation in AZ, no positive result -
              First ICD 2003 - In 2006 lead went bad, abandoned lead, threaded new one & new generator
              Myectomy 5-5-05 at The Cleveland Clinic - Dr. Lever & Dr. Smedira -heart surgeon.
              Currently have Grade 2 Diastolic Dysfunction with pulmonary hypertension & pulmonary edema.
              My brother passed away suddenly at 34 yrs old from HCM.
              2 teenage children, ages 17 and 15.


              • #8
                You have my deepest sympathies. Your family will be in my prayers.


                Husband has HCM.
                3 kids - ages 23, 21, & 19. All presently clear of HCM.


                • #9
                  I’m very sorry to hear of your loss. I guess by now it’s been pretty well established that I am Jewish, and some of our customs may be a bit different than what you are used to hearing about.

                  When a person passes they are brought before the Judge, who recons up their life. If the net result in the ledger is positive (if they’ve done more good then harm in their lifetime) they are admitted into heaven immediately. Otherwise they remain in Purgatory until their account is brought into balance. The longest stay in Purgatory is one year, during which time their accounts can be added to by friends and family preying in their name, giving to charity in their name, and doing good deeds – ‘doing charity’ in their name. (That is the ascending order of importance of the acts.)

                  Therefore, because of the respect I hold you in; I will do charity in the names of Mariesa and Uncle Bob and Aunt Sadie.

                  In olden times the rabbi’s tried to discern the best way to handle this situation. To give or do nothing might prolong the soul’s stay in Purgatory, yet to do things in their name for the whole year might insult the soul by implying they were the worst, and would have to remain in Purgatory for the whole year. The rabbi’s resolved the issue by saying you should say kottish (the prayer for the dead which is actually a prayer praising G-d) and do charitable acts for eleven months. This would insure that the soul of the person got the maximum benefit from your actions yet not be insulted by the action lasting the full twelve months.

                  I hope that all three are already in heaven and my actions are not needed – but then again, when are good deeds ever wasted?

                  By the way, she did not die alone. G-d was with her.


                  • #10

                    My deepest sympathy goes out to you and your family. Thoughts and prayers are with you all.

                    Dx @ 47 with HOCM & HF:11/00
                    Guidant ICD:Mar.01, Recalled/replaced:6/05 w/ Medtronic device
                    Lead failure,replaced 12/06.
                    SF lead recall:07,extracted leads and new device 2012
                    [email protected] Tufts, Boston:10/5/03; age 50. ( [email protected] 240 mmHg ++)
                    Paroxysmal A-Fib: 06-07,2010 controlled w/sotalol dosing
                    Genetic mutation 4/09, mother(d), brother, son, gene+
                    Mother of 3, grandma of 3:Tim,27,Sarah,33w/6 y/o old Sophia, 5 y/o Jack, Laura 34, w/ 5 y/o old Benjamin


                    • #11
                      Thank you all so much! It is such a support to know you care. Burt and Eileen your words about Mariesa not being alone were especially comforting to me. I recall when we played together as kids and even last month she and I spoke about our family going down to FL for a visit and staying at her house. The thought of her being alone at death just felt so lonely. But you guys are right. The Almighty along with guardian angels walked her through.

                      By the way. I am helping to plan a professional growth gathering for people who work for religious organizations. One of the topics we considered a couple of weeks ago was "on-line community". Our committee chair felt like the concept was an oxymoron, community needs to be face to face. But I told him of my experience with this community. Where we are drawn together by common experiences. We are able to be a warm, caring community. We truly do feel supported (as I have been, especially today) By the time I was finished describing you guys, he was ready to add that topic to our list. Thanks for proving my point to sincerely.

                      Peace to all,

                      God Squad co-moderator
                      Nothing is as gentle as strength and nothing is as strong as gentleness


                      • #12
                        I am so very sorry for your loss and the loss to your extended family. It is rather odd that in 2005 a 45 yr old woman would pass away as you stated. Is there a chance that your HCM may be present in that part of your family? How did her siblings pass away?

                        You are in my thoughts and prayers.

                        Knowledge is power ... Stay informed!
                        YOU can make a difference - all you have to do is try!

                        Dx age 12 current age 46 and counting!
                        lost: 5 family members to HCM (SCD, Stroke, CHF)
                        Others diagnosed living with HCM (or gene +) include - daughter, niece, nephew, cousin, sister and many many friends!
                        Therapy - ICD (implanted 97, 01, 04 and 11, medication
                        Currently not obstructed
                        Complications - unnecessary pacemaker and stroke (unrelated to each other)


                        • #13

                          Thanks for your condolences. My cousin did have very bad rhythm issues. She was 100% paced and in constant a-fib. She had never been diagnosed with HCM in spite of years of going to different cardiologists.

                          They discovered she had a perforated bowel, and her colon was essentially necrotic tissue by the time she got to the hospital. While I am not sure what pathogenic process was at work, during or after the surgery her kidneys began to shut down. Evidently there was a lot of toxic material that entered her system through the bowel perforation. But the word so far is that the kidney failure was what caused her death.

                          Her siblings were both adopted, so there is little to go on there. That being said her sister died of kidney failure too. Strange isn't it?

                          I will be leading the memorial service in FL sometime in April. That will be hard, but a good experience too.

                          Once again thanks to you all for caring.


                          God Squad co-moderator
                          Nothing is as gentle as strength and nothing is as strong as gentleness


                          • #14

                            I just read this post. I am so sorry for the loss of your cousin at such a young age. I just finished reading a wonderful book that would give you great comfort. It is called "Don't Kiss Them Goodbye", by Allison DuBois. The t.v. program, "Medium", is based on her life experiences as a medium. I was always neutral when it came to this subject matter, but after reading her book, it made a believer out of me and my husband (trust me...it takes a lot to convince him!). This is not in any way, shape or form, a solicitation. I watched her on the "Today" show with Al Roker asking her questions and she is a very intelligent, normal, sincere person who simply wants to share her "gift" with others.
                            \"It is not length of life, but depth of life.\"

                            Ralph Waldo Emerson