Last night Ron and I found out a sweet dear friend had passed away. Needless to say we were/are in shock. And so I found myself writing…
When I heard Cory had passed I sat in shock. How? When? Why? Karen must be devastated and numb. My heart goes out to her. We first met Cory when he was our son, Jamie’s 3rd grade teacher at Dick Scobee Elementary. A few memories that quickly come to mind was the day I got a call from the secretary telling me I was needed at the school and not to be alarmed when I arrived and saw the paramedics in front of the school. You may be asking “what happened?” I quickly drove to the school and went directly to the office. There I was greeted by Cory and a paramedic explaining that after lunch Jamie was walking back to the class room, tossing a quarter up in the air and as kids will do – his mouth was wide open in excitement and voila, the quarter went down his throat and he started choking. 911 was called, Cory stayed with Jamie till both the paramedics and I arrived. And after lots of reassurance going around the room, Jamie went back to class. Late the next evening Jamie came out of the bathroom and said he had to call Mr. Crawford. He wanted to let him know it was not a quarter but a nickel – no big deal now J.
The next memory is probably the one that has meant the most to my husband and I over the years. Jamie had a pet rabbit that passed away about two weeks before Christmas. Jamie went to school that next morning and was very upset. Cory asked him what was wrong and Jamie told him his rabbit died. Cory called that afternoon and asked if he could take Jamie out for an ice cream cone and to spend some time with him. And of course I said o k. A couple of hours later Jamie and Cory came into our home. I met them at the door and Jamie said “Mom, I told Mr. Crawford about our little Christmas tree.” I looked puzzled as we had spent the previous weekend cutting down an 11’ tall Christmas tree and decorating it with many lights and decorations. Jamie took Cory into the living room and he just laughed and hugged Jamie. We often talked about how Jamie pulled a joke on Cory.
We were also privileged to attend Cory & Karen’s wedding in Portland, OR. Jamie felt so grown up being invited and included in such a special day. We have kept in touch with Cory & Karen over the years. Jamie is now 34 and has a daughter of his own. Last year found my hubby and I working and traveling with Funtastic shows, the carnival that is at the Puyallup Spring Fair and the big Fair in September. We made arrangements April 2010 to stop by the school on the hill and see Cory. It was a busy day for him as kids were doing some special testing. He took about 20 minutes out of his busy day and we were able to visit and get caught and show off pictures of Jamie, his girlfriend and his little girl, Opal. Cory was so excited to see and hear about how one of his students and grown into such a wonderful young man. After the big Fair in September 2010 and before we headed off to a much needed 3 week vacation we met Cory & Karen at Applebees on the hill. We had so much fun visiting and sharing about our lives, where the Lord has led us in such different paths and rejoicing with each other that God is good and faithful even through the difficult times.
And then we heard about Cory’s death. Shock is what we felt. Sadness to know Karen is alone and having to eal with some difficult days, weeks, and months ahead. Yet in our shock, grief and sadness we know that God is faithful and is in control even when we don’t understand. Our prayers are with you Karen and the rest of Cory’s extended family.
Love and prayers, Ron & Alice, Jamie & Brandon Workentin
I just got off the phone. He wanted details. I have none. He too has a special place in his heart for Cory Crawford. And after hanging up the phone I remembered another conversation that Cory had with Ron & I when Jamie was in 3rd grade. It was parent/teacher conferences and Cory said he had a dilemma…how do you tell a student he can’t read right now…it is time to do xyz. You see, Jamie was and is a voracious reader. Cory never wanted to tell Jamie he couldn’t read but yet there were sometimes other things that needed to be done like math, science, language. We have often chuckled about that conversation. And we are so thankful that Jamie grew up loving to read and that he still does read, everything he can get his hands on. Thank you Cory for not squashing Jamie’s love for reading.
If you think about this post in the next week or two, please say a prayer for Karen and the rest of Cory’s extended family and friends who are dealing with this unexpected loss. The memorial service for Cory is being held next Saturday in Puyallup, WA. I know our thoughts and prayers will be with Karen that day.