Mile high memorial

29 Sep

The next remembrance comes courtesy of Aubren Hummell. Allie and I became friends with her during our time in Denver. When I thought of trying to describe Allie for her obituary and her service I was struck by how Allie seemed to make a life long friend from every place she had ever stayed. She spent a semester in Colorado Springs and came out with a lifer, she spent several years at Taylor and has multiple lifers, she spent a few weeks at Cleveland Clinic and came out with some lifers. Aubren was one of Allie’s Colorado lifers. She has been a regular visitor to Ohio and my kids always enjoy a visit from Aubbie. Here is what she had to say about Allie.

I have dwelled on memories of Allie in the last few weeks and feel honored to record such stories in writing. Sitting in remembrance has brought smiles, laughs, tears and encouragement. As God gave us the Bible with stories of His unparalleled Love, we know that narratives serve a purpose and can help us change, grow, remember and enjoy… over and over again. My desire it to paint a picture for Paige, Hayleigh and Mollie to know what their mother was like, as I’d imagine their memory will be faint one day. I want them to see how their mama lives in each of them through different characteristics, mannerisms, personalities, and love for: people, working out, sunshine, family but most importantly, her love for the Lord. She will live on in our hearts and minds but even more through her precious little girls that inherited top-notch qualities from the most fearless woman of God to have walked here on earth!

When I met your mother… it was at a church called Aspen Grove in Littleton, CO. Your mother approached me to introduce herself & ask me only about a million questions. Your mother loved to ASK QUESTIONS! But I didn’t mind… I was excited a connection was finally made as I had noticed her several times from across the room. She had such an outgoing demeanor, charisma, and friendly smile accompanied by the cutest little girl (Paige) at her feet. This precious family was surrounded by many as everyone felt loved, encouraged and challenged within moments of being in their presence. Your mom and I immediately connected with common interests & she wasn’t shy to ask me if I wanted to meet up and go for a run!! Your mother would NEVER hold back at the opportunity to get to know someone and was gifted at making people feel comfortable in any and every situation.

Shortly after we became friends, my family experienced a tragedy that left a challenging road ahead of us. Your mom didn’t skip a beat in finding ways to encourage not only me, but also my entire family. She joined my mother and I on walks, went to lunch/dinner with my brother and I, and joined in on a few volleyball games at the park. But what set your mother apart from everyone else is that she genuinely wanted to walk alongside us and know who we were, how we were doing, and what were our exact needs. She never missed out on an opportunity to be INTENTIONAL and love on anyone. She was bold in asking the hard questions about what God was doing in our lives and in what ways specifically were we struggling… a personal COUNSELOR for our whole family. When Allie and I got to have one on one time (mostly on the jogging trails), I always left our time together encouraged, energized and filled with Truth and biblical guidance to conquer the challenge at hand… it always ending with prayer requests.

When your mother left Colorado, I was thankful for my job as a flight attendant so I could stay connected with the Armstrong family. My trips to Ohio were always greatly anticipated as I missed my mentor, motivational coach, dietician, pastor, personal trainer, sister, and friend! She never wasted time to ask the hard questions and challenge my faith by pointing out areas that needed refinement! I knew I would get Godly, honest, genuine, and loving Truth whenever I talked to your Mom… even when the truth wasn’t pretty… she never shied away from disclosing what God had placed on her heart to share with me. She chose to put time, energy, and prayer into every moment of her relationships… she allowed herself to be used as a tool for God to show His love. She wanted to DO LIFE with everyone God placed in her life WHOLE HEARTEDLY, which has changed the lives of many, many people.

When Allie called to inform me of her diagnosis, she wasn’t scared, she was steadfast, trusting in Him. She knew God would take care of her and give her the strength she needed for whatever it was to come. She was willing to SUFFER for His glory, she was willing to FORGIVE and overcome disappointment when life wasn’t fair, she showed the world how to PERSEVERE when all odds were against her and she did it all with an unwavering joy! Joy didn’t always come in a smile form… there were tears at times! TEARS when she showed me hours worth of videos of her kids… Tears when she saw her loved ones hurting… but her tears never swayed her hope, trust and faith in The Lord.
As I came home from an unforgettable visit in Houston, I recorded this is my journal:

​A weekend with Allie:
How blessed am I that God brought Allie into my life seven ago. Her presence itself has always challenged me to live for His glory. She seeks conversation that pursues the depths of my heart and encourages me in the areas holding me back from His closeness! She’s never hesitant to speak boldly of His love and gently reminds me of our call to surrender ALL of ourselves. This has always been the story of our friendship… as I’m thankful and cherish the role she has played in my life as an older sister, mentor, and friend!
This weekend was special as we spent three whole days together… fully present with no distractions. Just like a child, I watched her intently as I long to be just like her some day! I believe she said, “hi” to 164 people, inquiring all she could with a 30 second elevator ride, or 10 second signing in process, or with the waitress as she took out order. She found out where people grew up, what plans they had for the day, and if they were still tired like they mentioned last week… and what they were looking forward to this week! She never forgot a face… not a detail of their life and she makes the most out of EVERY moment she has! Whether it’s a quick FaceTime to say hi to her girls… meet up with a fellow cancer patient to encourage them while waiting for the buzzer of her next appointment… Reading blogs or watching videos or returning emails, she would never skip over ANYTHING of the millions of things people send.
She loves to do life with those that God surrounds her with and she gets excited to spend time in the Word together! She starts by reading aloud her devotional for the day… and takes joy in praying over ME… when she is the one facing trials… I don’t know why I have been given the gift of having Allie Armstrong in my life but God… I am SO GRATEFUL!

I could probably write a book about your mother but you probably already have three volumes worth if you read through her infamous blog… and all the comments… Facebook posts… letters and cards! Your mama was one incredible lady that made it to heaven with grass stains on her knees, as she left all she had, giving 110% here on earth and will be forever cherished by many until we all meet again! Above all else… know YOUR MOTHER LOVED YOU SOOOOO MUCH!!!

Forever Changed,
Aunt Aubbie

3 Responses to “Mile high memorial”

  1. Tera September 29, 2013 at 10:21 pm #

    This brought tears to my eyes as most posts do lately. So very true….such a caring person Allie was . Not one text or conversation went by without Allie asking how I was or how my family was and how she could pray for us. I remember calling her from work one day asking her about a daily devotional book that was on the book display to buy and her saying ” YES GET IT” I am reading that one too. !! And I am so thankful that I did for I knew throughout this past year and a half each morning I was reading and pondering the same words as my dear neighbor and friend. Such a joy to see her being a mommy out my kitchen window daily. Yes Aubren she was a fantastic mommy and girls you can ask me any time and I will share stories of the daily love I saw your mommy have for you. Love you Paige, Hayleigh and Mollie.

  2. Aunt Sue September 30, 2013 at 6:25 am #

    Thank you Aubren for sharing your love for Allie and her family. In meeting you the day of the service, over at Mike’s house, it was evident that you loved our precious girl. Thank you for investing your time and energy into loving her. Knowing her girls are being loved on by so many is comforting to our family. Thanks for writing.

  3. Tami October 2, 2013 at 7:01 pm #

    Love reading these posts!!!! Thank you for sharing!

Leave a Reply to Tami