Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Monday Blues

Hi there.  I had every intention of telling you about my weekend yesterday, but then I got some heartbreaking news…my company’s receptionist, Cynthia, passed away yesterday. Details are still not confirmed, but from what we know, she got on the train yesterday morning to come to work.  Like a good majority of the office, she took the Metra, which is a series of train lines that go out to the suburbs to bring commuters in/out of the city.  Since the train ride is long and typically the same people get on the same trains every day, many of my coworkers have “train friends”.  They celebrate milestones like births and retirement together.  Since alcohol is allowed on the Metra, some even bring drinks to have Friday Happy Hour on their way home.

Yesterday morning Cynthia wasn’t here at 8:30 and it was assumed that her train was running late. One of Cynthia’s train friends, who was sitting next to her, called the office to say that while on the train she had collapsed and then went unconscious. In their train car there was a nurse and a doctor who performed CPR.  A little later, Cynthia’s mother called the office to say she was on her way to the hospital and shortly after that her mother called back to say that Cynthia was pronounced dead before the ambulance arrived at the hospital.

 I’m not sure of her exact age, but I believe she was in her late 30’s/early 40s.  She was a larger black woman, but she seemed relatively healthy as I often ran into her outside on lunch during walks.  I’m not sure of her marital status, but she did have a son, soon to turn 16, and the most adorable, splitting image daughter, age 9.  It’s surreal to think that just a few weeks ago she was at the Corporate Chase Challenge with us.  She went home after work to get her daughter and didn’t run/walk, but was there to support us.  Last week we had an after-hours office party and she was drinking margaritas alongside us.  I’ll miss her greeting me hello in her sweet voice “Good morning Miss Hannah!”.  She had a smile to light up a room and will be missed. We're all in shock.  This is a sad reminder to live each day to its fullest and not to take anything for granted.

Please send your prayers to Cynthia’s family as well as our office.

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