Many helped create a better world before their deaths

To put it mildly, it’s been a rough semester.

First, our nation and our freedom was attacked. Thousands of people of all ages died. More continue to die as we to make the Taliban pay for the terrorism. The family and friends of those who died here and abroad, and the rest of the nation continue to suffer greatly from the series of terrible events that happened nearly three months ago.

Last week, we lost Amber Krenz, one of our classmates here at Eau Claire to a strain of bacterial meningitis. She was 22. Her family, friends and many here on campus are mourning the loss of a great human being.

To add a little kick to the punch, my cat, Abby, checked out of her usual spot on the top of the sofa and into a much nicer space in animal heaven (preferably a no-dog section), a week ago today. She was 16. I miss her.

It seems like things couldn’t be much worse for the nation, my family and friends.

Though the loss of each individual could quickly bring tears to the eyes of anyone affected, there are plenty of good things to remember about each of them.

Terrorism victims

Story after story has been appearing about the heroics displayed during the attacks of the World Trade Center, Pentagon and airlines. Firefighters ran into a collapsing building to save people that may have been trapped. This probably wasn’t the first time they displayed such courage.

Passengers on the airplanes that ran into the buildings attempted to physically stop the terrorists.

It is important to remember the things those lost in the attacks were able to accomplish before they died.

A UW-Eau Claire student

I only met Amber once. She was working at Eau Claire Orchards a year or two ago when she recognized my Mom and I who were buying apples.

“Don’t you work with my Mom?” she asked.

My mother quickly recognized her as the daughter of a co-worker. Soon, a brief conversation followed about what was recently going on at the ninth floor of Sacred Heart Hospital, where both of our mothers work.

My knowledge of Krenz’s personality and achievements extend a little further though. I have heard about just a few of the other things Krenz did.

She was a person who would rearrange her schedule to babysit her brother, her mother Sheila Wright told The Spectator last week.

This unselfish behavior was the tip of the iceberg for Amber when it came to helping others.

She also spent time working with AmeriCorp. Her intentions and goals apparently centered on helping others.

I am certain that her goals were already met.

Others close to everyone

Although a death of an animal cannot be compared to the loss of human life, many who have had pets understand losing one is nothing petty.

Abby had been around for about as long as I can remember. Although she spent most of her life being quite ornery, she has given me a lot of laughs.

And finally, on Friday, the world lost musician George Harrison, formerly of The Beatles. To the dismay of many he died of cancer at the age of 58. Again, Harrison was able to touch many lives though his music.

It is difficult to get past the reasons why these individuals had to part with us in such untimely manner.

But we should use the memories we have of those we have lost to help accomplish their goals. Each one brought something to the table that is more than worth continuing.