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LIVE FROM - 2019 Pacific World Cruise - LA to LA

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But For The Kindness of Strangers and Special Friends

 

One of the most common things you will hear on a cruise is how you will never see these people again. Not true! People you meet on this site, through the roll calls, on the ship, can become some of your dearest friends in your time of greatest need.

 

Mark and Marie, Craig and Trish, all cruise critic members, who, along with Paul and Elizabeth, made sure I was never alone during the two long sea days after her death to Auckland. Barbara and Peter, also cruise critic members whom we sailed with in 2018, who called me from England on the ship to my cabin after they heard the news.

 

To the crew of the Pacific Princess that that helped expedite my departure from the ship, arranged to take care of her clothing and our belongings that we no longer needed, made sure I had everything I needed and even shipped the excess luggage back to our home.

 

To the many fellow cruise critic members that sought me out on the ship to express their condolences, to cry with me over my loss, to attend the service on the ship. As I said during my eulogy to Judy on the ship, I don’t know how I could have survived on a ship full of strangers.

 

And even total strangers, who don’t know you at all, respond to tragedy with kindness and heartfelt gestures that touch your very soul.

 

From the funeral director in Auckland that expedited her release from the coroner and shepherded me through the process of cremation, to the personnel at the Auckland US Consulate’s office who expedited the paperwork and notified United of my flight plans. To the United personnel at the Auckland airport who blinked back tears of their own as they guided us through security and made sure I was comfortable in the lounges awaiting our final flight home together.

 

To the crew of the flight from Auckland to San Francisco. Their handmade and personally signed sympathy card. To the purser of that flight who constantly checked on me and escorted us through passport control to the arrivals lounge. To the arrivals lounge personnel, alerted via United of my plight, made sure I was comfortable, and after a hot shower and breakfast, escorted us through domestic security to the United Club.

 

To the many cards, letters, emails and phone calls, and posts on this particular thread, some of whom I’ve never met, I’ve read them all, heard the anguish in the voices, felt the sincerity in the words, and appreciated each of every one of them. And to the cruise critic friends, who flew in to attend her celebration of life, CL and Meei, Ken and Susie, in Colorado Springs, and to those who wanted to, but couldn’t. To those friends that have talked me into cruising again, or at least booking another cruise in the future, it has been, for me, the best of times and the worst of times. But, the gift of your friendship to us and your remembrance of Judy and her life will keep her alive in our hearts for eternity.

 

For that I am forever grateful.

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1 hour ago, ccrain said:

The Rest of the Story

 

Next week will be the 6 month anniversary of her death. 6 of the longest most anguishing months of my life. I have wanted to post an update for quite a while, but couldn’t bring myself to. Those of you whom have been in contact with me know most of the rest of the story, but just to fill everyone in, the final coroner’s report from Auckland was that she died of Salmonellosis, specifically, Salmonella Weltevreden, a variant tropical strain of Salmonella found in the tropics of the Pacific and Asia. What I thought was Noro turned out to be something far more deadly.

 

We held her Celebration of Life ceremony in Colorado Springs on April 6, which would have been her 64th birthday. It was well attended by friends and family. As is my hobby, I created a video of her life to show at the Celebration. As part of this final tribute, I’d like to share it with all of you:

 

https://1drv.ms/v/s!AnklLO6ZVH8F62Y5YgXk221LZDHY?e=k198Uy

 

One of the most incredible things I experienced when creating this video is the lack of regret in how we enjoyed our lives together. No shoulda, coulda, woulda. We cherished our time together and made the most of it. I couldn’t have wished for a better partner, a better companion, a better wife.

 

Remember that the next time you look at your significant other. Revel in that sense of completeness with them. Time is short on this planet and you owe it to each other to make the most of it.

 

Thank you for sharing that touching video with us.  It certainly was a life well lived with so so many memories.  Brenda

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Thank you very much for coming back to Cruise Critic with your update.   Your video was absolutely touching and beautiful.   

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Thank you for coming back and sharing the video and the rest of your story with us.  I like so many think of you often and were wondering how you were.  Yours is a love story to envy and Judy's was a life very well led.  Truly an inspiration to all of us. 

 

I wish you peace throughout the rest of your life journey.

 

Be well my friend.

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Thank you for sharing the rest of your story; I know that it is hard to bare your heart and soul, even after six months. They say that time heals, but I believe that it just makes the pain more bearable, bit by bit. Your courage and strength are inspirational; I wish you all the best and send you heartfelt hopes for the future.

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Charles, it does get better.  Time really doesn't heal, but again, it does get better.

 

Pia

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2 hours ago, tawlaw1526 said:

Thank you very much for coming back to Cruise Critic with your update.   Your video was absolutely touching and beautiful.   

 

My sentiments exactly.  I never met you, other than reading your "Live from".  I wish you peace.

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Your video was such a beautiful tribute to a wonderful lady.

We enjoyed watching you and Judy dance on several cruises. Thank you for coming back and sharing with all of us.

Love and prayers your way.

Gloria and Lew

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5 hours ago, ccrain said:

The Rest of the Story

 

Next week will be the 6 month anniversary of her death. 6 of the longest most anguishing months of my life. I have wanted to post an update for quite a while, but couldn’t bring myself to. Those of you whom have been in contact with me know most of the rest of the story, but just to fill everyone in, the final coroner’s report from Auckland was that she died of Salmonellosis, specifically, Salmonella Weltevreden, a variant tropical strain of Salmonella found in the tropics of the Pacific and Asia. What I thought was Noro turned out to be something far more deadly.

 

We held her Celebration of Life ceremony in Colorado Springs on April 6, which would have been her 64th birthday. It was well attended by friends and family. As is my hobby, I created a video of her life to show at the Celebration. As part of this final tribute, I’d like to share it with all of you:

 

https://1drv.ms/v/s!AnklLO6ZVH8F62Y5YgXk221LZDHY?e=k198Uy

 

One of the most incredible things I experienced when creating this video is the lack of regret in how we enjoyed our lives together. No shoulda, coulda, woulda. We cherished our time together and made the most of it. I couldn’t have wished for a better partner, a better companion, a better wife.

 

Remember that the next time you look at your significant other. Revel in that sense of completeness with them. Time is short on this planet and you owe it to each other to make the most of it.

 

Thanks for the update Charles.

You guys did life right. 🙏🙏

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Charles I have been a long time reader and fan of your blogs.  I never responded but always read every word you wrote and was always struck by how your love of Judy came through in your posts. Like so many,  I cried for you when I read of the tragic news and found it hard to believe.  Your videos have shown what a zest for life Judy had.   You were so lucky to have found and loved each other.   I wish you peace. 

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So sorry for your loss and hope you are getting the support you need.  Any type of Salmonella is typical bacteria that causes food poisoning.  I suffered a terrible bout of food poisoning on the Regal in March from eating a late after noon snack from the buffet.  Just a few slices of cheese that must have been left out too long.  I knew it was food poisoning because as soon as I got it all out of me - I was ok.  I tend to think the is what happened to your beloved wife.  Because of differences in pre-health status, she probably wasn't able to overcome it and antibiotics need to be started ASAP with Salmonella infections.

Hang in there Charles.

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Thank you Charles for the update and the beautiful video. We will be thinking of you and Judy as we sail on the Ruby Princess from Vancouver to Sydney, past the same ports as you, in September for our 50th wedding anniversary.

You both set a high standard for us to follow on how to enjoy life.

Brian

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Posted (edited)

We were on the WC with you both and so appreciated all your tips prior to leaving.  I felt shock and such a deep ache for you when we heard of your loss............. but I just watched ALL of your videos and have to say I felt such JOY while watching and my cheeks hurt from smiling my way through all of them........ THANK YOU for allowing all of us into your lives and reminding us to treasure every moment and always tell those we love how much they mean to us!!  You have touched our hearts deeply 😥

Edited by slwildflower

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Thank you so much, Charles, for sharing this beautiful video with all of us. It is a wonderful tribute to a special woman, a passionate love, and a bountiful life. Thank you, too, for reminding us to appreciate the loved ones we sometimes take for granted. May you will find increasing peace and solace with each passing day.

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Thank you for the update, Charles. We especially appreciated you sharing about the Salmonella. You are in our thoughts, frequently, as we plan for upcoming cruises. We hope that we manage to see you again, when/if you feel up to it.

 

Donna and Rich

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“Live from......World Cruise” caught my attention.  I have one planned in 2021 with two couples, and hope to find as much information as possible ahead of time.  I had no idea that I would be so moved by your story.  Your loss is great because you had a great connection.  That’s a beautiful thing.  May she Rest In Peace and may you find peace again in your life.

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Charles, Thank you for the update.  Your video was a beautiful tribute to Judy.

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What a wonderful tribute video.  May you be blessed with love from all who read and write on this forum.  

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Charles, thank you so much for sharing your beautiful video.  You and Judy had so many wonderful years together.  You will be in our prayers.

 

Bob and Meredith

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Posted (edited)

I was reading CC and thinking of you when this Live blog showed up.    So glad you came back to fill us in.. I think of you guys often and hope you are doing well.

 

 When you mention salmonella in Asia and tropics, do you think it was something she picked up on the 60 Day Circle Asia cruise?   I remember she didn’t feel well a few days during that cruise in November and missed your amazing Ha Long Bay private tour.    Could it have been festering all that time and just finally overwhelmed her system on the world cruise in January /February?    That is so sad 😞 

 

Grief is so personal... you will never forget, but we hope time heals the wounds and you can once again enjoy life.   I’m sure that is what Judy would want for you 💝

 

Take care and hope we meet up on the high seas again in the future.   Once cruising gets in your blood.. it is hard to ignore.  🥰

 

Mike and Dolores Hill

 

 

Edited by hillslife

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Thank you for posting again.  We have thought of you often and wondered how you were doing.  May all your wonderful memories together offer you some comfort!

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