~by Stephanie Prince
When Rollin and I went by to have lunch with Rollin's wife, (my daughter-in-law), Stephanie at her 4th-grade-class where she teaches at Brickey Elementary School last week, Rollin pulled down from her bulletin board the following paper Stephanie had written and shared with her fellow teachers and the students at her school a while back. As I read it, I was very touched with how she saw Merry Katherine as she had gotten to know her over the years when they were all in Youth Group together at the church she and Rollin still attend.
When I think about someone who I see as a hero in my life, I think of my late sister-in-law. Her name is Merry Katherine Prince. On August 2, 2006, she passed away in a car accident on her way to the beach with friends. She was only 19 years old.
The reason I think of her as a hero is because of the way she examined her faith, her love for others and how that changed my perspective on life.
Merry had a heart for people who were hurting. She wanted more than anything for everyone she knew to feel loved. This got her into trouble from time to time, but anyone who knew her would tell you they knew she cared about them. When she would meet people who held different values than she did, she would use that as an opportunity to test her faith and better understand what she believed. She was always honest about where she stood and what questions she had. This honesty was appreciated and admired by all who cared about her.
After the accident, my husband and I (we were dating at the time) grew very close. His faith that God was in control and that we should celebrate with Merry was an inspiration to me. It is hard when tragedy hits to see the bigger picture, and he was able to (do) that. We were able to feel a part of the joy she was experiencing!
From that point on, I promised myself that I would not take a day for granted and that I would strive to love those around me, no matter what. Merry had a wonderful sense of humor, and our happy memories make me excited for the time when we can celebrate alongside her!
So, Merry Katherine Prince is my "hero" because through her short time here, she helped me to see that God's plans and purposes are higher than ours. While we are on Earth we need to love and care for each other. She is a hero for giving me a fresh outlook on our life's purpose, on what matters the most ... loving Christ and loving others.
Stephanie, and Stephanie's brother Joe,
(who was also Merry Katherine's good friend)