[Thanks to Mike Katz for this compilation.]
June was an inspiration to all of us, tireless in her dedication to helping other patients, always upbeat and ready with a mischievous joke even when she was hurting inside. I will miss her dearly and we will all need to work that much harder to fill the enormous vacuum left by her untimely death.
People like June cannot be said to die, for their memory burns brightly within the enormous number of people they have helped and inspired.
Funny how a person you've never even met can affect your life. To all the voices of praise for June, let me add mine.
Her courage, dedication and genuine care is an inspiration that will last us a lifetime... She touched each and every one of us in a very special way... I believe that she will keep touching (and cheering !!!) the "lives" of every one she will meet in that better place she has moved on to ....
My sincere condolences to her family...
Her death would have been untimely if she had lived to be 100. In my experience their are givers and there are takers in life. The givers ask for no reward or compensation. They give because of their innate goodness. June was the ultimate giver. What made June so unique was that not only was she a giver she was unbelievably knowledgeable, wise, and effective. Her help was not special just because it was so freely offered, it was special as well because it was so wise. I feel so divested not only June's wonderful family but for all of us as well. No one of us will be able to take her place but perhaps together we can try. I will miss her freely given hugs and her cyberhugs as well.
Just a note to express my sadness and sense of loss at the passing of June Brazil. She was a truly remarkable person and was always there to help. She was one of a kind and will be quite irreplaceable.
To all of you in the Myeloma community - I have just this moment learned of June leaving us for far a far better place. Right now I am too stunned to think - as I was fighting for my life last Thursday night she was losing hers. Having had the privilege of meeting this wonderful lady who did so much for all of us I feel I have lost a dear neighbor again.
June, until we meet again, Via con dios. I will miss your sunny self.
We have read each of the love filled posts, and can't think of any thoughts of June that we have, that have not already been said. Except we would like to add a big "Thank You" to June's wonderful family for supporting her so much that she was able to give so much hope and caring to all of us. Your loss is tremendous, and we share it with you. Love and prayers
I just read that June passed away, I wanted to share with you my utter devastation. I have only known June briefly and come to love her spirit in that time. I know what a strong bond you two had, and how difficult this must be for you. She was such a special and humbling person, the work, energy and strength you two have put into myeloma and amyloidosis is astounding.
Since my dx in early 1996, June has been one of the constants. She has always been present, giving words of encouragement and edification to all of us, when I have intermittently returned to the MM list. I am deeply, sincerely saddened by this loss. To her family - our sympathy and prayers.
I wish I had gotten to meet June.
Oh God! it occurred to me, if I felt like I was punched in the stomach when I heard, having only an e-relationship with her... how overwhelming her loss must be for those who knew her in the flesh. She was truly a remarkable human being.
I would like to add my condolences to the list. June was a myeloma pioneer. We will all miss her very much.
God saw that she was getting tired And a cure was not to be; So he put his arms around her And whispered, "Come with me." With tearful eyes, in silence, We saw her fade away. Although we loved her dearly, We could not make her stay. A golden heart stopped beating, Hard working hands laid to rest. God broke our hearts to prove to us that He only takes the best.
I would like to send my deepest sympathy to June's family. It's a big shock to me to receive her news. I am praying that June is in a better place now. She'll always be with all of us in our spirit, and be around us when we are down and struggling. June, thank you so. so much for sharing part of your life with all of us.
I feel so sad that I could not finish reading all the letters of condolence. Though I never met June, I felt close to her for many reasons.
Others have already described her compassion, caring , knowledge and insight. I can only concur with them. What I admired and respected most was the way she told it like it is. When I was in depression at Christmastime, she went the extra mile to reach out to me. That says a lot about a person's character. She had been to the depths and shared that with me. June was not afraid to use a few choice four-letter words to shock me out of my lethargy. I have never before felt that someone I had never met was family--a kindred spirit on Earth.
We shared some of the same problems in our illness. I also have compression fractures and have worn a back brace for a decade. June encouraged me to consider Aredia but she was never pushy. I greatly admired her courage in trying Zoledronate before it was officially approved. I believe she said Zoledronate made her feel like she had been in a kick boxing match. The lady had guts. I miss her.
Ironically, June passed away just before Christmas. My Mom left the material world in December 1990. She had struggled with both breast malignancy and heart problems for years. Now I will remember June and my Mom at Christmas. Both were one of a kind. As I approach my 14th year with non-secretory myeloma, I feel alone but not really alone.
I was shocked and deeply saddened to hear of the loss of June. Our loss is God's gain, however, and you can bet she will be up in heaven praying for all of us.
I don't think I ever had more respect for someone without ever even meeting her. I couldn't believe how sick she was and continued to travel and offer help to those in need. My hope is that I can be more like her, and try to give help and solace to others.
My prayers are with her family and friends, who I am sure number in the thousands. She really lived the time between her birth and passing and made it count.
Life is so fragile. Dan didn't tell me until I had been home from the hospital about 2 hrs. last night about June. I must confess that I still (and never will in this life understand.) My former boss, a Catholic priest, always says the good go first and June certainly did a tremendous amount for the Myeloma community at large and especially through the IMF. Since June 1990 Francesca Thompson. M.D. whose former occupation was a social worker as mine was has been my heroine. Her book, "Going for the Cure" kept me going long before there was the IMF and the internet.
Then when I first read of June in the IMF newsletter somehow I felt I knew her. One, of those inexplicable things in life. She became another heroine to add to my life as it was only through Dr. Thompson book and the IMF newsletter that I knew of other women in my age group or younger with MM.
I will never forget her and I know all of you feel the same even though I have yet to read all the posts you have written.
May the peace of the Lord be with her and all of us as we celebrate the Holidays and a new century.
I just want to thank you all for all of the love and support you provided to June, who in turn has brought all of us so much kindness, wisdom and hard-won knowledge.
Sometimes I wondered if June hadn't had every single complication possible with MM... As you are no doubt amply aware, all of that experience--that suffering--was generously turned around into a gift to others in the form of compassion and critical needed information. How I wish we could relieve your suffering now as she so often relieved ours.
Bless you all. And thank you again. May your love strengthen the bonds among you.
I have been a non-participating member of this list for a very long time, but I hope you will all overlook that to read this. It was through this list that I met one of the most inspirational and intelligent people that I have ever had the privilege of knowing, June Brazil. As you all may now know, June passed away early this morning. I am deeply saddened, and I could have sworn that for a split second last night -- the world stopped.
At our times of great loss, we always hear the special things about the loved one who has departed, but one of the greatest testimonials to June -- I discovered this week -- was getting to know some of her *friends* of this world. June's friends are from all walks of life, of all different types -- but they all have an unmistakable* intellect and life force. I am humbled to be among them. Possibly we all became better people *because* we knew June.
I don't exactly remember who initiated what in my and June's relationship, but I do remember our first face-to-face meeting. We had been e-buddies for some time since I joined hem-onc in the hope of finding out information with regard to my beloved late Dad's leukemia. I was traveling to Boston and NH nearly every weekend to see Dad, and one or both of us said that Tarrytown NY was just on the way. We got into a discussion about apple pies, and I said that the best apple pies in the world originated in New Hampshire. She told me to bring one over when I was returning to NJ from visiting Dad. As in many things, June had exquisite taste, and had a special penchant for apple pies. *She* would determine if my boasting was warranted. OK, babe, you're on. So I brought myself and this gorgeous NH apple pie to Tarrytown, NY, knocked on the door of "Chez Brazil et Gallea" and stepped into the home of what turned out to be one of my best friends ever. We ate the whole damn pie, and my husband wanted to know where the pie went, because when I returned to NJ the evidence was nowhere to be found :-). There was another story with a similar leitmotif regarding my mother's lasagna. Mike didn't get any of that either :-).
Anyway, my friendship with June deepened, and I got to be quite close to her younger son, Jessie. He was at her side when she died. I think her wonderful spirit will live on in this marvelously sensitive, extraordinarily talented young man. And as June would say, quite handsome, too. I don't think the both of us are too biased, do you?
June asked me if I would teach Jess how to play tennis. That's how I got close to him, for we didn't always *just* play tennis. We talked quite a bit too -- about life, about whatever. I hope I've been (and continue to be ) as positive an influence in Jessie's life as June has been in mine.
June was my intellectual soul-mate. She was brilliant, and I could actually discuss my work with her as if she were a colleague. She understood pure science, and could read my papers like they were novels. June's wit and sense of humor were also on the same wavelength as mine, and we would laugh like hell about so many sorts of things, even when she was in incredible physical pain from the dreaded myeloma. I loved to make her laugh. I hope that I brought at least a bit of extra happiness to her. I cannot write anymore -- salty tears are definitely not good for keyboards.
Please pray for June's soul and the loved ones she leaves behind. I will miss her profoundly. Thank you for reading this.
During this time of year when families come together in fellowship and remembrance, an empty chair around the table is especially painful. To the family of June Brazil, may I add my expression of sympathy to those already rendered. She was indeed devoted to ministering to those that crossed paths with her in the journey of living with multiple myeloma. I will not forget her words of wisdom and wit and appreciate so much her part in establishing this list as a means of communication between MM patients, caregivers, and family members.
In memory of June, the following verse is forwarded. It is an American Indian version of the Twenty-third Psalm.THE ROPE OF LOVE The Great Father above is a Shepherd Chief. I am His and with Him I want not. He throws out to me a rope, and the name of the rope is LOVE. He draws me, and He draws me, and He draws me to where the grass is green and the water is not dangerous; and I eat and lie down satisfied. Sometimes my heart is very weak and falls down, but He lifts it up again and draws me into a good road. His name is Wonderful. Sometime, it may be very soon, it may be longer, it may be a long, long time, He will draw me into a place between the mountains. It is dark there, but I will not draw back. I will not be afraid, for it is there between those mountains that the Shepherd Chief will meet me, and the hunger I have felt in my heart all through this life will be satisfied. Sometimes He makes the love rope into a whip, but afterwards He gives me a staff to lean on. He spreads a table before me with all kinds of food. He puts His hands upon my head and all the "tired" is gone. My cup He fills it till it runs over. What I tell you is true, I lie not. These roads that are "Away ahead" will stay with me through this life; and afterward I will go to live in the "Big Tepee" and sit down with the Shepherd Chief forever.
I thought that I was the only one on this list with whom June was so personal! She had a way of making us all feel so special.
I can't help but think of all the time she had to have spent on the computer. I want to thank her family for sharing her with us. Some of her giving spirit is evident in them.
Not only was June on my MM list, she was also on my "funnies" list. She certainly loved a good laugh, too.
I take great joy in knowing that June is there with outstretched hands for all of us when we pass that point of the unknown. We may not be able to meet each other face-to-face on this earth, but one day we will all know each other better...multiple myeloma, or caregiver...for we all must pass that way one day.
Can you believe the lives June has touched? May she be our example!
"Wishing you were somehow here again", dear June, thank you for all the wisdom you imparted ,so graciously.
I'm still in shock, hoping that it isn't true. As soon as I saw the subject of your letter, I knew what had happened. I kept thinking if I didn't open it, it wouldn't be true. June was one of the most kind, generous people I have even known. She always had time for anyone who seemed to need her. I know that you will miss her terribly as will her family. Please let them know how devastated we all feel.
Dear Friends - As I have read the many postings, and thought of all she contributed, I have wondered whether we might not benefit by creating a sort of "little red book," of some of June's most helpful posts. In months and years to come, there will be new patients who can and should be inspired by her story and her spirit. If people could provide a brief synopsis of the problems they were facing and the questions they asked and then share the answers she gave, and if these could be collected and pulled together, with a "preface" biography of her extraordinary life, I think we would really have a valuable resource. Aspiring editors? Anyone?
I am shocked and terribly saddened by June's death. We all have lost a great friend and advocate. I am so stunned, I simply have no words.
May the Lord bless her and keep her. May the Lord make his face to shine upon her and give her peace.
To June: Thanks for your advice and example of strength. May God love you and keep you.
We just returned from a short trip and I was so shocked to read of June's passing. I want to add just a short word of my own. So many others have captured all that she was to the participants on this list. I think of the generosity of spirit that never failed as her outstanding trait. That combined with such a strong intelligence enabled her to help every one of us in some way. She wrote us a few spontaneous notes too when I had a question or two and I wanted to meet her in Washington. In her memory we can try to pass on to others what we know and encourage them and never slack in our determination to defeat this nasty disease.
I am in Shock! I have NO words. I am in Tears. We will never forget her. She is very MUCH missed and Loved.
JUNE my God bless you and please please take care of you... always..
My dear friends,
I am just devastated by Juneís death - she was so much larger than life. I first met her on the list Hem-Onc in December 1996. Gosh, was that only three years ago? She became my "heroine" and I told her that on many occasions. I tried to model my own "ministry" with myeloma friends after her own, but Iím still in awe of all she managed to do regardless of her own personal problems. June combined some interesting talents. She had become well versed in both Eastern and Western healing arts, but she also knew well the limitations of both. She had little patience with those who would worship solely at either of those altars when it came to myeloma treatment. But I think it was her humanity, her compassion, her caring that stood out in my mind. While her knowledge was impressive, her humanity was prodigious - and compelling to me. Iíd like to think that much of what anyone might find to be "good" in my own myeloma ministry is a reflection of what I learned from June. The only person with myeloma whom Iíve known longer than June is Mike Katz. And we all know that Mike is bionic and will be with us forever. I had hoped that June would also prove bionic but, alas, she has graduated. I feel such a terrible loss, but I know that June would just encourage me - and you - to fill in those gaps that are now left. We know how; she taught us that. And we still have her (and our) good friend Mike. I feel so terribly sad this morning . . . but I know that I have been so wonderfully blessed by these past three years with her. June - I love you very much and I miss you.
To June Brazil's Family,
We are truly saddened by June's departure from this earth but we know she has no pain now and will always be a beacon for all of us. She will never be forgotten by me.
I need to say goodbye to a friend whom I never met, though we talked about meeting; who helped me more than anyone else in relation to this illness, though she was far more afflicted by it than I have been. I used to open my email looking forward to a message from June, or if not, then to the fun of writing one. I never thought these would end this month, and the gap it leaves in my life is real and painful.
I'm awed, reading the tributes to her on the List, by how many people she found time to write to in a way that drew them to her. June's intellect and understanding helped people so much - it was like having another doctor, except that this one answered within the hour. We're going to miss that, and it would be wrong to underestimate it. She put my treatment on the right track more than once, and must have done the same for many others. I am so sorry I won't be able to thank her again.
Dean, Thank you for keeping June's friends informed at such a time of stress. Dean, David and Jessie, your grief must be very great, and I hope messages of this sort bring you the comfort of knowing how many friends of June share it with you.
I am very sorry to hear this sad news, I was hoping that she would be able to overcome her latest health related problems.
My heart felt sympathy goes out to June Brazil and her family. My thoughts and prayers will be said for her.
I was not a participant on the list serve, however, I had the pleasure of personally meeting June on four different occasions at IMF seminars. June was never there to gain knowledge, she had that, but she was there as a caregiver and a provider to other Myeloma patients. June was an inspiration to all of us Myeloma patients. Can she be replaced -- "Hardly". Most of us cannot contribute o June's level, but we can remember her as an "example" to encourage us to do what we can. I am grateful for her legacy. June left the Myeloma community "much" better off than she found it. She will be dearly missed.
Farewell to a smart and gracious lady. Condolences to her family and "many" friends.
I wish that I could say something to compare with things June wrote me. Just not as good as she was at making people feel even a little bit better.
Our sympathy to Juneís family during this time of sorrow. She is missed by all whose lives she touched.
When we joined the list in January of this year, we immediately created a ĎJuneí file, which we go to frequently for information and will continue receiving her advice from this file and the archives.
June met adversity and moved forward, setting an example that Virginia and I try to emulate as we Ďliveí with MM. Thank you, June.
My condolences to June's family and to all of you who knew her through the internet or personally. It sure sounds like she was the rock of MM supporters.
Some people are born to help others. I see June, (the first person to respond to my plea for information on the List when I first found out about my cousin's MM), as coming back to earth in whatever form to help anyone in need.
June will always be with us.
I know you are not there. It is really hard to believe that we can not talk each other even on the phone.
I know you are in peace but it is not fair that you are in peace before any of us. We all know you fought your way in a hard way but none even dreamed that you will be gone.
You will be talking to a man who used to say, "Get Aredia", "That will kill you", "Donut is the best medicine for MM". Please tell him some of us are still around and will miss you both terribly.
June, Thank you for being the first to come to my rescue in December, 1997 when Neil was lying the hospital with kidney failure and diagnosed with mm, a disease we had never heard of. You encouraged Neil to see Dr. Durie and helped us through his six weeks of hospitalization with his PBSCT. Afterwards you recommended an acupuncturist, an old friend of yours, right here in Berkeley who was so helpful. It was a great pleasure to meet you, finally, at the IMF seminars in Cleveland and again in LA. The comfort and personal touch you gave to us you gave to so many others. You so graciously shared your vast wealth of knowledge on this miserable disease with each and every one of us in so many ways. We will always remember and cherish you. You have truly made this world a better place to be.
Like so many others, the news posted by Mike was devastating and the Digest postings since then show how much we loved her and valued her help- freely provided despite her own quite significant battles.
June's passing came as an unexpected shock to us all, no less than to those of us in Australia and New Zealand [downunder]. I think it is true to say that none of us ever met her face-to-face but through this list we not only knew her - but in so many ways depended upon her and loved her. Indirectly those of us here had the benefit of her wide knowledge, of her genuine concern for others, and of her preparedness to always be ready to help others even in those moments when her own myeloma battle was peaking.
June was an inspiration, and without knowing that she was always out there (along with Mike) I think it would have been almost impossible for me to have created, and now to manage, Myeloma Australasia. Ask a question of June and you could be assured of a prompt and spot on answer - and so often this response would come overnight despite her own difficulties. Only God knows how we will gain this inspiration and input in the future.
On behalf of the almost 300 members of Myeloma Australasia across Australia and New Zealand, I would like to express our very sincere condolences to June's family. People like June are all too rare in these times and I would like her family to know how much she was loved and appreciated by the MM'ers downunder. Her suffering is over and she is now in God's loving care.
I'm shaken from June's death, for me and for all of us - especially you and her family. She was vitally important to me an example of how to do it - how to maintain a life in the face of devastating disease, how to stay honest and involved, how to help. And she was lovely person to know. In between bouts of tears and feelings of loss I try to recall these aspects of her life, and how even though I will never live up to her example, she made it possible to articulate these values and strive to live by them.
As I scanned the topics and saw "June's passing", I thought, "Oh, God, don't let it be June Brazil", but I knew it had to be because I know no other June. I felt that she was going to die because she seemed to be losing the battle, but it came as a shock that it was so soon. She was one of the strong back bones of this digest and I shall miss her sorely. I don't know how she found the time to answer everyone's e-mails and even send me a private one. My condolences go out to everyone who knew June and were touched by her, especially to her family. I'm glad she is in a better place now and free of pain.
Shock, disbelief, anger, sorrow, memories...It's surprising , feeling this loss about someone I've never met but spent five years sharing a common problem on the net. It will be an interesting reunion and I bet June brings Joe some donuts.
I want to add my "voice" to the outpourings of sorrow over the passing of June Brazil. June was a beacon for all of us radiating knowledge in an informed manner coupled with understanding and compassion. It is up to us to keep her light shining along the pathway to the "cure".
I've spent the last 48 hours checking my email and knowing that life can't be all bad if one single woman can touch so many people in such a positive way. Thanks, June, for sharing yourself with us all, and thanks to your family for supporting your efforts. We are all so much richer for having known you.
I never got the pleasure of meeting June, but I read her postings religiously. There was something about the woman that came through in the way she wrote. She seemed to have a gentle and caring kindness about her that you could feel. It is obvious by the tributes of the last two days that she affected many others in the same way. She will be missed.
We never sat face to face (at least since birth!) ... I like the idea of a breakout session for "the online folks" at the Seminars in honor of June.
Goodbye from all of us who remain behind and my heartfelt condolences to your loving family. Your body fought a long and difficult battle but your spirit won over and had the last laugh. Your myeloma is no more.
May you continue to follow the path to true enlightenment as you leave your earthly presence.
I, too, am shocked and saddened that June has left the battlefield. She carried on valiantly for so many years. I printed out nearly every June Brazil post that came along because of June's brilliant knowledge of MM and her succinct manner of relaying the information needed. I felt privileged to have met her at the Myeloma Seminar in LA last September. She was suffering some fractures then and was in pain but carrying on - even taking in the seminar...though her primary purpose in coming west was in seeing her MM specialist. She asked me how I liked the Seminar. I replied that I enjoyed it very much gleaning new information, reviewing &/or confirming some of the old, but that the highlight was in meeting fellow MMers - especially her - (I told her that her posts were so informative and helpful) & that I could hardly believe that here were many of the list members - up close & personal! I also told her that the seminar germinated new & more questions that needed answers. She said with a twinkle in her eye, "Post them! I'll do my best to answer them or find the answers!" I shall keep my special file of "June's gems" in her honor. I still remember being thrilled to have found her survivor's story at the Myeloma web site. She was a special caring angel...now wearing her wings. She certainly earned them.
I hope that in writing this June's family will know that she reached around the world with her love, her support and her vast knowledge about this disease. That she managed to do so for so long is remarkable. That she has died at this time is perhaps sad but can also be regarded and rejoiced as a very special time for her, her family and us all. Our love to her family from the South Australian Support Group.
God Bless you June and even though I've never met you I feel as though you were a close friend. You were an inspiration to all of us. My sympathy to your family who I'm sure will miss you dearly.
On this list we have to face a lot of sadness it's very hard to keep fighting when we lose wonderful people like June but she always found a bright side and something to cheer you so we thought that we would share our good news with all This past week George & I celebrated our 41st wedding Anniversary and his 61st Birthday we received the best present any of us could hope for --- The onc told us that his blood has never been better and the markers that would tell us that the MM Monster is stirring are no where in sight so for now we will just continue as we are with No treatments and regular blood work to keep tabs. That alone would have been enough to make us happy but on Thursday we went to the Cardiologist and he found that George's heart now has a normal rythm he too will continue to monitor blood work and see George again in 4 months. For now we are accepting these gifts from God verrrry gratefully and taking one day at a time. Thank you all for your continuing support and prayers. Even though I haven't kept up with the list during my own illness you have always been on my mind and in my heart.
George and I would like to add our condolences to the family of June Brazil, We met June last year at the Miami IMF conference and we will never forget how supportive she was to all in need. Everyone of us on this list has lost a very important family member this week, she will indeed be missed, but the work that she has done will always be remembered each of us has learned and benefited in some way just because there was a lovely lady named June.
I came into my office Saturday night, something I rarely do, especially now when I want to spend all the time I can with my dear father with mm, so I usually don't see weekend e-mails until Monday a.m. But tonight, I continue to see the steady stream of praise and expressions of grief for June. I could just hear June now, telling the group that they have to limit their e-mails to something more constructive. I do miss her already.
I will miss June. She and I have corresponded at intervals for most of the 6+ years I've experienced the disease. At times she would chide me, suggest that I didn't really want to take this or that drug, because in her thinking it might shorten my path . . . by a few days or weeks. What consideration! And we talked about going together as spokespersons to a medical conference but the doctors didn't really want us, she discovered, and we stayed home and tended our gardens. And we did some brainstorming together about the concept and the design of the MM ribbon. Each time we met on line I felt the warmth that comes to me when I am met by integrity, honesty, clarity, thoughtfulness and caring kindness.
I have no idea how these qualities come to flourish in certain people; I have come to recognize them and meet such people eye-to-eye and give them the respect they deserve. There aren't a lot of them. The loss of any is a diminution in the fabric of our lives.
The reason I am writing now is because of the discussions of June's death. I have officiated in probably 500 + funerals and what we are doing here is very much a part of the healing that is so necessary. We need to learn to morn as well as rejoice. We all do it in our own way and find the strength to continue on. It is important to let each one deal with their sorrow, anger , disappointment rage or what ever in their own unique way. Some need to talk and others need to be left alone , at least for awhile. I am learning to recognize that there is no right way to say good-by to a love one and it is very easy to misinterpret another's grieving process.. Thanks for letting me ramble on. June touched my life and she never knew it. My wife cried when I told her about June. It scared her a little bit, but it gave us another chance to talk. Must close, I have to get mind ready to share with my congregation tomorrow morning on the Joys of Christmas. I am also celebrating my 60 th birthday with my congregation and family. This time last year we didn't think it would be possible Prayers to all.
I am the care giver for my mom who has had this disease for 14 years. Since joining this list about a month ago I found that I need the information from all the good people here. My mom does not read the list I do ,I figure that is my job. I read the good news and the bad like Junes passing. I look how others are doing with their treatments, and use that information for my moms care which is my number one priority. I do not look at someone who is having problems, who might be near death, from any disease and say oh no this could be my mom. Some day it could be but not without a damn good fight I don't think June would want it any other way. Mom keeps asking me when will she die from this disease and I tell her I will tell her when she can die and not before. God Bless Everyone
June, Rest in peace, dear lady....shalom.
Since reading Mikes' post "sad news" I have been searching for a word to describe June and her effect on me and the MM community without much luck. Many words, which fit her well, occur to me: "Innovative" and "productive" - I don't know the nitty details of how this internet list group got started but Mike is often introduced as the initiator and his first words were always to acknowledge that the credit goes to both he and June and that it is June who does all the work. "Critic" - she was surly that because as our list "housemother" she occasionally had to jump in and tell us that we were getting out of line or off target. I know for I was the target on several occasions - and she did it so well - I really felt like I had been chewed out by a true "professional". The high standards of this group are a direct result of June's efforts. "Humor" - on those several occasions when I met her face to face I found her to be "warm" and with considerable humor. "Caring" - Seldom have I met a more caring person. I would guess that few on this list have not been contacted, directly, when June had some words of wisdom and/or advice to convey. Despite her own problems over the past few months we corresponded frequently and always about MM problems of someone other than herself. "Wife and Mother" - I didn't know June in this role but when we did meet she always managed to get in a few words of praise for her family, so my guess is that she performed this role as well as her many other ones. "Dignity" - Always! "Quality", "Integrity", "Conscientious", "Courageous", and on and on. So many applicable words. How could a single word stand for all that she was? And then, in a flash, I realized that there was such a word - JUNE! I will truly miss her!
Our language cannot express the feelings of loss and an emptiness, we can only share that with the Spirit to which we pray.
Dear Family members of June Brazil, Please know how much we all will dearly miss June. It's been said that Angels on Earth, must return home to God when their work is finished here. Therefore we know in our hearts that she will continue to watch over us and plead with God for a cure for this disease.
I must start by saying how deeply saddened I am by June Brazil's passing. Her saintly compassion for each and every person she encountered - whether in person, by phone, or in cyberspace- truly enabled her to inspire courage and touch us all very deeply. My heartfelt condolences to her family and us all.
What devastating news - June has left us - she will be sorely missed. We have personally not posted for quite some time now but read the list every day and have learnt an enormous amount of information from June's postings. We just wanted to say goodnight, god bless June.
I, too, was saddened to learn of June Brazil's death. She truly amazed me with her grasp and knowledge of MM, how she met it with a sense of humor, and had lots left over to share with all who needed it. John and I attended a funeral today of a dear friend who was very much like June in that she endured almost a lifetime of pain with courage and a happy spirit. I think of all your letters of tribute to June as a celebration of her life. I am happy Peter Tischler is planning to send them on to her family because they should be of great comfort to them and an affirmation of their love for her.
We are all so distraught other the death of our wonderful friend June. Added to this feeling, for me, is confusion about exactly what happened to her in the end. I keep rereading a statement from her husband, Dean: "June is in her last days at White Plains Hospital, having developed an untreatable deterioration of myelin in her brain, on top of all her other problems, and became unable to communicate. Her family, close friends, and myself (Dean, her husband), in consultation with her doctors, made the difficult decision to discontinue treatment, abiding by June's stated wishes.
I can't add much to the wealth of the tributes already expressed to June. I am amazed at the volume of personal email, telephone, and other correspondence that she maintained with so many of us in addition to her priceless participation in the list. And that nearly to the end, when she must have felt so often that she just didn't have the strength for it. What a beautiful legacy to have lived for others so completely when suffering so much herself. She's a model for us all! My condolences to her family. May they find comfort in the realization of how much she meant to so many of us.
I usually post condolences privately but I have just finished reading all of the wonderful tributes to June and I had to chime in. My mother, son and I had the privilege of meeting June at two IMF seminars and I have shared many messages with June over the last 2 years.
Early on, June and I worked on researching and writing a few paragraphs about Net Etiquette -- she was very bothered by the heated exchanges that occasionally took place and wanted some guidelines to send out when people signed up (and as an additional reminder if necessary). I have included the two main paragraphs that were picked (I'm not sure if she was still using them or if they evolved further).
June provided so much comfort and advice, all of it saved and frequently referred to. I am sure that her legacy will live on as a model for us all.
I am saddened and in shock at this news about June.
I was very fortunate to have had the opportunity to communicate via e-mail and telephone often on her nickel when ever I had a request for information. She called me several times to assist me when I was applying for S. S. Disability.
We met her in person at Rye and enjoyed having lunch at the table with her husband, Mike and his wife. I saw her again in Atlanta in April. I was having unidentified back pain and talked to Dr Durie regarding this. June very compassionately touched my back in trying to identify the exact location of the pain.
I admire June in so many ways; she was truly a saint and guardian angel to everyone she new. I never felt like I adequately thanked her for all she did; there were never enough adjectives available and I wound up feeling kinda corny in trying to show appreciation. June has made this journey with MM so much easier to understand and cope with.
I look forward to seeing her again someday.
With prayers and thanks to June and her family.
Although we live many thousands of miles away in another country and never met June personally we feel her loss deeply. Her wit and wisdom were a source of comfort to us both when John was struggling in hospital two years ago. Her messages on the list were always informative, often humorous and at times inspirational. We are all richer from her presence.
I don't write well as other people on the list. I am still numbed to express myself regarding a loss of this uniquely wonderful woman, June. I have never met her physically but I feel like I know her somehow via her "Survivor's Story" and her messages on the list. I was hoping that she would do it "again" to fight her latest problem like she did many times in the past.
She was an inspiration to my husband with MM and myself as a caregiver. She once e-mailed me re what she thought about an alternative therapy I asked. I still follow her philosophy on that issue.
Please give my best regards to "June" and her family.
June will whisper the answers when that happens. Her relationships with each of us, MMers, caregivers, providers and researchers, continue. Let's not say good-bye, just thank you.
The past two days postings about June have been overwhelming and wonderful. The eulogies and testimonies that have been written have mirrored so many of my own thoughts and feelings over the past 5 years.
We who live in far distant places have held a memorial service for June via the internet, and for that I am most grateful.
Dear Friends, When I first read of the loss of June, I did not know what to do. My mind could not function to even share my very heartfelt condolences. I sent an ever-so-brief note to Mike acknowledging his sad message, but it was as if I could not really process this information.
So, as so often happens, the only thing left to do was to methodically go through the listserv messages, one by one ..., that I have missed as I was "too busy" with my own life these past 24 hours to log-in. As I open message after message so eloquently sharing the writer's pain at June's passing, but nonetheless managing to share tributes of the life-affirming moments of compassion, humanity and HUMOR! bestowed upon the writer by this remarkable woman, June -- my thoughts begin to clear and I can now think to write.
What a beautiful tribute to our beloved June. I don't know what to say other than you have said it beautifully, and that I am having difficulty believing such devastating news, but I must.
So many eloquent words have already been said on this list about June, but I feel such a need to jump in and add my thoughts, even though they seem redundant.
I've sat here reading for the past hour with tears running down my face. I woke up at 4 a.m., unable to sleep, and thought it was a good time to catch up on email -- I've gotten behind what with all the Christmas preparations going on. (Somehow I doubt I'll go back to sleep now.)
I saw June's name in numerous posts and whispered, "No, please no." It couldn't be. Not June. She's been such a leader, such an icon, such support to so many people.
She was one of the first people to respond when I joined the list because my dad had been diagnosed with mm. It seems like her post was among those I showed my dad, trying to give him hope and encouragement.
I always enjoyed June's comments and found her a wise and intelligent source of information -- and a calming influence as well.
This list is composed of many very different people united for one cause, and we had a fearless leader in June. She was a bright shining light in the darkness that descends when that diagnosis of mm is heard.
I've learned from my father's death and from this list that you can't measure a life in years and that there are no guarantees of how much time any of us will have here on earth. Seize the day and all that -- Pat's poem said it well -- I've tried to say it many times because it's so important to practice it.
June knew how to seize the day and she made the most of her life. She had a tremendous impact on many people.
And she will be missed. I never had the privilege of meeting her, but in this cyberworld, a face-to-face introduction isn't necessary for friendship and caring.
I suspect there were a lot of angels waiting to greet June yesterday -- Joe was probably at the head of the line. I'd like to think my dad was there, too.
My sympathy to June's family; I know our grief can't even compare to theirs. I hope knowing how many lives she touched and the impact she had will bring some comfort in the midst of their sadness.
And may God help some researcher find a cure to end the suffering the beast of mm brings. Too many good people are being taken from us.
How sad I was to hear the news of June's passing. She has been such a tireless campaigner in both her personal battle and her advocacy for others. She was so warm , caring , intelligent and had a great sense of humour and perspective which we all benefited from. My sincere condolences to all the group , and especially her friends and family ; may we all take comfort that the pain and loss felt is an indication of how precious a gift June was to everyone she touched in her life.
I told my MIL tonight of June's passing, and she asked me to send a note to the list to convey her deepest sympathies to June's family and those of us here, who grew to know and love her. Funny isn't it mum didn't even know June, nor had she communicated with her, but through me speaking of her, she felt as though she knew her too.
This dear lady has touched so many of our hearts and given us so much over the years. She was my guide, my cheer leader, my inspiration, but most of all, my very dear friend. I will miss you dearly June. God has another angel by his side. Rest well and peacefully my friend.
Cheers and cyberhugs (we've all heard that before haven't we?)
As I "logged on" this evening to gather my day's email, I was surprised and ominously disturbed to notice the sudden increase in volume. There were over 100 emails waiting to be read, more than twice the normal number. Most were from the myeloma listserv and that can only mean one of several possible things. Unfortunately, a major breakthrough in MM treatment was not the explanation and it didn't take long before I discovered the sad (and dreaded) actual cause, the death of a major and very highly respected contributor to the MM community, June Brazil.
As many of us painfully well know, MM has claimed the lives of far too many exceptionally courageous, nice, and admirable people. However, few are as broadly known to the MM community as June has become through her active participation on the listserv and in other MM related activities. I can't really speak for others, but for me she has become the public face and a list spokesperson for many who have courageously battled this thoroughly awful disease in private. The MM community couldn't wish for a better visible example of courage blended with selfless grace.
Many on this list have by cruel necessity become unnaturally "battle hardened", tough, and even badly scarred or scared, and this can show through in various ways. We are not always graceful, though most of us have become very direct and "no-nonsense". Also, many on this list have times when they feel very unwell. June was certainly tough, direct, and must have not felt well much of the time, but she never showed anything but grace and outspoken compassion for others on the list. I can't recollect ever hearing an unkind, critical, or unsympathetic word from June, though she did sometimes gently but firmly put a stop to some "runaway" unproductive list arguments. It is pretty hard to consistently be like this when you have "associated with MM". June succeeded in always being both nice and helpful under these very adverse conditions and therefore she has become an example that I must try hard to emulate in my own life.
I shall badly miss June. I shall also badly miss her high quality information that she frequently shared with the list members. I feel very fortunate to have been able to meet her in person, and told her so. With me, her memory will be a vivid, uplifting, and permanent one.
June's death is a dreaded and terribly distressing event, yet her example is a very bright and happy one, made more shining by the awful context. Both aspects will leave their marks on me, and no doubt on us all. She is a very well-liked and respected public representative of the tragedy and courage that many of us have experienced privately.
Best wishes, June, and fond farewell. To her family, my very deepest sympathy. I know it is very hard.
If what I said was taken that I do not have feelings you are wrong . I just look at MY CANCER different than you all do.. June was a true Lady and words cannot express my feelings on her pasting. But I feel that I have the right as you all do to say what I feel about this loss.. I see many things on this web site that can do more harm then good sometimes .. But I just keep my medical comments to myself..... I just had MM it does not give me the rite to tell others what to take or have done. That's is for the medical community to do..... I can only advise people on what has happen to me..... If I hurt or upset anyone that is life..... But I will always support anyone that asks me for it......Thank you
You're missing a key consequence of June's passing: She's getting us to think about both LIFE and DEATH. Through the numerous tributes to her that are being posted, we are all coming to know her better (even though posthumously) and to celebrate the LIFE that she led in such an exemplary way. In many respects, she's not gone. Today she's more with all of us than ever before. Sure, it's sad, but we only truly value something (esp. LIFE) when we realize that it's not forever. I look back at the posts from June that I saved, and I marvel at her depth of understanding--about MM and about the potential of each of us to learn from what gets thrown at us. In her posting of Oct. 26, June said that she was "feeling pretty punk" (an understatement, considering she was hospitalized for severe pneumonia and kidney malfunction), but she promised to resume her correspondence as soon as she felt better. Her last line was, "Will let you know of any interesting developments." Remarkable. She found MM "interesting" up to the very end. She signed off with "cheers, June."
So sorry to hear of June Brazil's death. I had only very brief contact with her but I found her to be an immense soul, even though we talked through e-mail but once or twice. I can't imagine how great your personal loss as well as that to IMF and the Amyloidosis network. Thank you for your beautiful posting to the list. My deepest condolences.
I never had the privilege of meeting June in person, but she was so helpful to me when I submitted my dad's MM story after he passed away last July 29. In one of our private e-mails, I accidentally addressed her by the wrong name (Ruth). When I discovered my mistake, I e-mailed her again to apologize. She sent a message back to me telling me not to worry about it, that she answered to just about anything. She then told me that my dad's story was wonderful and that the poem I wrote for him brought tears to her eyes. She signed her message - warmest regards, June (aka Ruth, etc.). I really enjoyed her sense of humor and her message made me smile, something that I had not done much of since my dad's death. From all of the messages that I have read here regarding June's wonderful attitude, her helpful ways and her compassion for others, I wonder how she found the time to be so helpful to each and every one of us and to make us feel that we were very special to her. She truly was a great lady. Today's sad news has brought tears to my eyes. My sincere sympathy to her family.
A few minutes ago, I opened my mail box, and noticed there were too many posts today. Anything happened? When I learned the answer, I just could not accept the reality.
Ever since I joined the list about a year ago, June has been so nice to me. We had several things in common; same age, mother of two children, her knowledge and interest in Japanese culture... Every time I talked to her, I felt like talking to a beloved sister.
Right now, I cannot stop tears coming out of my eyes. This list is great, but it's sometimes too sad to read. June, I will never ever forget you. Please, rest in peace.
As a newcomer in the past year, I can not count the times June 'bailed' me out when I became overwhelmed with panic. God bless her family as they grieve this courageous and valiant woman!! I, for one, did not realize her disease had accelerated, and am so shocked by this news.
Thank you for your wise, generous and compassionate presence in our lives you made living with Myeloma so much more bearable. I have lost a friend, and just can't keep the tears from falling the pain is deep and the void perhaps irreplaceable.
My deepest condolences to your dear family, and all of us on this precious list.
Tonight when we downloaded the digest, we saw a name in the preview window. It said Sad News ... June Brazil. That could only mean one thing. That an icon of the myeloma world is no longer with us.
First, Joe. Now June. They won't be here for the cure. But because of their help, many of us may.
We had the pleasure of meeting June at three IMF meetings -- Rye, Miami, and Atlanta. And we were looking forward to seeing her again in DC in January.
She was always upbeat, informative, friendly, and helpful, both in person and on the list. The tone and quality of the correspondence on this list is a tribute to her dedication as a listowner. She touched us all and she will be forever in our memory.
I, too sit here in tears over June's passing. Although I never met her nor directly corresponded with her, I always anxiously opened her posts as I knew she would be sharing some information or reaching out to one of us in need.
God has said "Come home to me" and she is now free of pain and is watching over all of us.
My sincere condolences to June's family. They are in my thoughts and prayers.
I can't believe this wonderful woman is no longer here with us. I have been crying for hours and hours and I still can't stop. She and I have talked on the phone, exchanged email, she ordered my vitamins for me. I had the pleasure of meeting her once on March 10, 1999. My wonderful friend Brenda (whose brother also has MM) and I decided to take the long ride from New Jersey to Tarrytown, NY to attend one of June's meetings. We were looking forward to meeting the group but we were absolutely giddy in anticipation of meeting June!!! I never get star struck over mere celebrities...but June...this was a real, shining star.
I will miss her constant presence here, her detailed responses, her great humor, her absolute level-headedness when we were too rowdy, her caring ways. What a gift she was to all of us. The newcomers to this list have been cheated out of knowing this unique human being. I urge them to dig into the archives and read her posts to get a flavor for the personality and substance of this woman. How will we ever replace her?
As others have suggested, I know I will think of her and reach out more often to help others. She has left her mark on all of us and it is indelible. Good-bye, June. It was an honor to know you. I will miss you.
She was one very special lady. We grew to be quite close to one another, perhaps because we were of about the same age and had the same cheeky sense of humour. She was a guiding light to so many of us. I feel as though I've had my right arm cut off. Strange isn't it... I didn't physically know her, but I loved her and now miss her terribly. I'm feeling a bit lost today...
I am so sad to hear that you have left us . After reading your last update I prayed that you would recover. I didn't write you to tell you about Pete's passing because I didn't want the news to affect your health. You were our freind and such an inspiration to Pete and I. Even though we lived miles away it was the Myeloma Foundation , and your compassion that brought us together. Would you believe that in a city as large as L.A you were the first "cousin" that we met? Pete and I often talked about the evening we met you last January, for dessert at "Shutters", in Santa Monica.
Although we were friends for a short time I will always remember you as if you were one of our oldest friends. Thank you for being a friend and teaching us so much . . You educated us on being patient advocates and kept our hope alive. Pete lived a better quality of life ( he swam, walked, took piano lessons and ballroom dancing and we traveled to Mexico and Europe) because of the treatments you suggested and because he met "June the survivor" . I printed your survivor story and handed it to him two years ago, but meeting you in person changed his outlook, you gave him hope and instead of getting depressed about the disease he squeezed as much as he could out life. I will always treasure you because of the difference you made in our lives. You gave us the gift of hope and determination that allowed us to embrace life and look forward to a future despite the beast. I'm so sorry we were unable to meet again as we promised. Pete passed away on August 4, 1999 in our home after 5 weeks in hospice. He was surrounded by love as I know you were too. I know he will want to be the first to greet you with a hug and smile and welcome you in heaven . I miss him so much ...and I will miss you too.
My deepest condolences to your husband Dean, sons and your family. I am grieving the loss of my husband, Pete, who passed away 4 months ago (just 9 days before his 40th birthday). June was a cherished friend and was always there for us with advice especially when Pete became very ill and our treatment options were running out. She may be absent to us now but I believe her spirit will always be present! May you feel the warm embrace of loving memories and hear happy echoes of the good times you shared together.
I am profoundly saddened, on many levels, by Mike's news of your passing. I met you only a few times over the years, but have read every message you posted to the list and have profited from every one. While you are a very special person whom the beast should not have been allowed to take, a good part the emptiness that I feel has to do with me.
For years, now, you have been for me the voice of reason and authority about the MM that threatens us. Of all of the good advice and encouragement offered on the list, yours has been my standard for knowledgeable help in dealing with diagnosis, tests, treatments, side effects, depression and just living with MM. As my physicians know, I did not take your recommendations lightly and it has made a difference in my treatment and, very likely, in my longevity.
Your courage and good humor in dealing with your disease and its many complications was an inspiration to me. I felt that if a smart, knowledgeable, sharing, hip lady like you could have a positive outlook and could transmit that to other sufferers, then my situation wasn't so bad! Even, in the very early mornings when I am besieged by the "willies", I think about you and how you were living your life. Now, that's changed and I must ponder my own mortality, again.
Condolences to the family that now mourns your death. I hope that they will be comforted in the knowledge that there is a world of people who mourn with them at the passing of a truly wonderful friend. More than that of a friend and advisor on the internet, I am feeling the loss of a close member of my family and it will take some time for this sadness to pass. Then I must look for another source of information, encouragement and support that I will no longer have.
I miss you, June
I utter this prayer and I am sure everyone agrees with me:
"Please God give some researcher or doctor the answer to find the cure for this beast soon."
There are few words in our language to express the love I had for June, the joy I felt when opening a note from her, or the very intense anger I feel at learning of her death.
May God be with her and may her memory help each of us each day.
I have followed June on this forum for many months. She is an inspiration to me as my wife Elaine also is fighting this thing. God bless and comfort her family and friends as June now walks on the streets of gold in Heaven with Jesus with a brand new body.
She tirelessly contributed to this list -and I always enjoyed exchanging e-mail messages with her even though we had never met. When you saw a post from June, you accepted it with the obvious carefully researched authority behind it. What a great contribution she made.
Thankfully, though, she is at peace. Please extend sympathy to her family.
Early in my lurking, I realized that June Brazil's comments were true pearls. Anything she wrote was solid, helpful and healthful information. Her knowledge of medical and alternative treatment methods was reliable, sort of "take it to the bank" information. She answered any and all questions whenever asked.
June was a great, smart and gracious lady who will be sorely missed. I'm so glad I knew her in cyberspace. Condolences to her family and to the MM family.
I find this so hard to believe that with all her knowledge and good treatment, she couldn't have made it longer. Of course, as you surely know, when we lose someone, our own mortality looms before our very eyes once again. If she couldn't make it to the cure, how can any of us? Forgive me, it's just the depression showing it's ugly head. I would like to wish you a Blessed Christmas and a safe and healthy New Year.
I have always regretted not writing to Anwar Sadat and telling him how much I admired him - a brave man who saw his destiny and made peace with it.
I wish I could meet Nelson Mandela. I would like to tell him the same.
I met June Brazil, right here on this list, and it is no exaggeration to say that to me, she is among the greats - clear, calm, intelligent and a leader among her people.
I have only been on the list for a few weeks and was welcomed by June at that time... By the wonderful tributes to her I can only say that I wish I could have known this great lady.. My prayers to her family..
To the person who feels he has a positive attitude and only wants to surround himself with up beat people...I don't think you have fully come to terms with your MM... If you don't think about it... you don't have to face it... Sorry...I've had MM for 12 yrs. that I am positive of... I am a very positive person but you have to be a caring person as there is always someone worse off...just look over your shoulder...
May June rest in peace
We've never met, but I was a good friend of June's. She mentioned you often, and cared for you very much. What you wrote was so nice. Art Flatau forwarded your beautiful words. I also wrote a eulogy and sent it for general perusal to hem-onc. The eulogy was rather long, but I don't think it exceeded "the Gilles factor" :-).
I've known June for about 5 years. We got to know each other through hem-onc. My father was stricken with AML in 1995, and I joined the list to find info and help. June and I hit it off, so she and I met IRL. I would go up to her house on about 75-80% of the Sundays since around 1996. I am quite close to her son Jessie. The only sliver of light that I find in her passing is that Jess was there.
I miss her tremendously.
I had met June Brazil at the MM Seminar in Cleveland. I'm so sorry that our community has lost such a fine lady.
It is even harder to lose a fellow sufferer when you have met them in person. I will miss her.
June was my hero...
It's really hard to believe that Saint June is not going to be around dispensing her knowledge and advice. I am sure she is already doing so in His Kingdom.
I need to add my heartfelt sympathy and prayers to the multitude of condolences and loving message for June. Having read many of her messages to the list, I have had a sense of her sincere love, caring, and deep concern for everyone on the list and all mm patients. I wish I had known her as intimately as many of you. Daily I gain strength and support from reading the postings. My prayers and love are with June's family and friends.
I have heard it said that the angels cry when each of us are born because they will miss our spirit while it is on earth and rejoice when our spirit rejoins them upon the completion of our earthy journey. We humans have the same feelings only at opposite times. We are joyful at a child's birth, and sad when they must depart our world. Creation, it seems, is always in balance.
I am sad she is gone, I am glad I knew her even if only as a cyber friend. I will miss her help in dealing with myeloma, I am grateful for the legacy of courage and compassion she left us.
I wish just for today I could be one of those angels who welcomed her back.
I never got to know her or meet her, but I am sure she was a fine lady. My prayers are with her family. ( I have had Myeloma since March 97) I am not sure who will fill her shoes. Can anyone?
I knew that June was in trouble. She had been talking to Dr. Durie about her situation and he had been consulting with her local doctor, trying to come up with something that would help her. We were in New Orleans for the annual meeting of ASH and Dr. Durie and June's doctor were talking on the phone and faxing back and forth. I took one look at Brian's face and I knew that she was in trouble and so were we.
June was one of those people that doesn't come along too often. Sadly not often enough. She was a throw back to a time when people had values and stuck by them, no matter what. June was never in it for herself. She selflessly reached out and helped others.
The first time I met her I was not prepared for how she looked. Talking to June you never knew how much bone destruction she had experienced or how much pain she might have been in. When I saw her for the first time she reminded me of Brian Novis, because her back had collapsed and she had lost inches in height, she was wearing a brace, just as Brian had done. But like Brian, June never let that stop her. She offered her help at many many meetings. Willing to sit behind the desk and do whatever she could to help. She traveled, getting on planes or in the car going to meetings so that she could lend a hand and help others.
June did more to help the IMF than most people, she worked tirelessly manning the listserv. She was super smart and had lots of good ideas. We were proud to honor her with the Francesca Thompson Outstanding Service Award. It was a small token, and she more than deserved it.
June also had a very funny sense of humor. We both have mini dachshunds and she would send me jokes about doxies, things that only dog lovers find funny. One day I opened a package from June and in it were dog toys, squeaking "space balls" that glow in the dark! Only June would think of something like that.
To say that I will miss her sounds so trite, but I don't know what else to say. There is a poem that I read somewhere and it goes something like this:"She was like a brief shining star that shoots across the horizon on a crystal clear night. One that dazzles your senses in its flight through time. But soon the star fades and is gone from you sight. But she really hasn't gone at all - she's burning just as brightly - in some other sky."
I've lived a long time and have known a lot of wonderful people, but June stands out as very special indeed. What a remarkable person who without flourish or fanfare went about helping us all. Peter, you said that she was your heroine. When I read the news of June's death, I also immediately thought, she was a true hero . Just a few weeks ago, she wrote me a short note. I've always thought of June as impervious to myeloma's wrath because right to the end she was so full of life, so giving and helpful. I don't know how more upbeat her message could have been. A simple thanks is hardly enough. A simple heartfelt note is hardly enough. Let's keep up June's good work.
This is truly a sad day for folks on "our" list. June has shared and taught many of us much about MM. We will miss her! Prayers and Love to her family.
This is truely a sad day for folks on "our" list. June has shared and taught many of us much about MM.We will miss her! Prayers and Love to her family.
This is a sad day indeed. You're gonna be sorely missed, June!
June was such an incredible, remarkable person and I feel such an emptiness and sorrow at her passing. I feel sorrow for her family and for us, her myeloma family, whom she graced with her caring, devotion, and overall medical knowledge that never failed to impress me. When I first got on the list about 3 1/2 years ago it was June's posts that I would read in the archives more than anyone's. First of all her name caught my attention, June Brazil, I thought what an interesting name. As soon as I read that first precise, thoughtful, knowledgeable post of hers, I then wanted to read everything she had written, and always felt that way. I truly believe that because of June my husband, lived longer and in less pain. The one time I talked with her on the phone, she sounded so friendly and vibrant and alive...it was hard to imagine her with any illness. It touched me that when my husband died in January, June sent a donation to the IMF in his honor, as I will now do in her honor. I remember emailing her once and letting her know how wonderful I thought she was, and I am now so glad I did...but I wish I could have met her in person and given her a big loving hug for being the person she was.
I am afraid that I am a lurker and not much of a contributor but being part of this group, even as an outsider, is such a source of support. June was one of a few on this list who make/made things easier to cope with and less scary. I shall miss her concise and sometimes humorous responses - she shall be missed by many but it seems to me that with this list there is no beginning and no end - everyone who contributes, however briefly, is immortal - never to be forgotten and I thank you all from the bottom of my heart.
I can only imagine how difficult it must have been for you to have to relay the news of June's death. I thank you for that ministry. You did not mention any plans for a memorial or memorials, but I will send the IMF an extra gift today and ask that it be noted as in June's memory. I think a lot of us will want to do this little thing to help build up the group which has helped us all, for which she did so much.
This is for the "Gentleman" who wants us to keep positive on this list and not down. One of the key words for this list is SUPPORT! And this is what all these letters are giving June's family. I think what I wrote bears repeating and this too can be deleted if it offends anybody!!!
I have only been on the list for about a month. June was the first to welcome me aboard. I never had an opportunity to meet June, but she was the kind of person that made you feel that she knew you all her life. The letters that I am seeing here on the list, shows that I am not the only one who feels this great void in my life. My prayers are with her family. I hope they know that she is now "Home" where there is no pain, no suffering and no tears except for tears of joy. I know June is watching over all of us. We can all feel blessed, for not everybody gets to know who their Guardian Angel is, but we on the list do! Some day down the road, we will all be with her again. "Down the road there will be a fork. One fork will be a miracle for me, the other fork will lead me home to be with my Lord. I am comfortable with either"
I never met June, but I feel that I knew her and am so saddened by her death. I sensed that she was not doing well from what she had written in the past few months and I prayed that she could overcome it once again. I am one of the "MGUS" people who is almost ashamed to write because I am not suffering like the rest of you. My mother died from MM in 1984 so I definitely know what a terrible disease it is. I have corresponded with June a number of times with questions and she always answered me and made me feel like what I asked mattered to her. I so admire her courage and the fact that she was such a "giver". Heaven will only be better because of her presence.
I realized June was having difficulty after reading her last posts but I just assumed she would conquer this problem too. Your news about her death is shocking and very depressing. I never met June but we had many one on one takes on mostly my problems. As you have said, she was a caring, obviously intelligent, and deeply dedicated to this cause. I personally will miss her. Please include my deepest sympathy to this family .
My heart felt sympathy goes out to June Brazil and her family. Many prayers will be said for her.
I need to add my heartfelt sympathy and prayers to the multitude of condolences and loving message for June. Having read many of her messages to the list, I have had a sense of her sincere love, caring, and deep concern for everyone on the list and all mm patients. I wish I had known her as intimately as many of you. Daily I gain strength and support from reading the postings. My prayers and love are with June's family and friends.
We've lost an angel. I so wish I had met June. Prayers to her family.
I have only been on the list for about a month. June was the first to welcome me aboard. I never had an opportunity to meet June, but she was the kind of person that made you feel that she knew you all her life. The letters that I am seeing here on the list, shows that I am not the only one who feels this great void in my life. My prayers are with her family. I hope they know that she is now "Home" where there is no pain, no suffering and no tears except for tears of joy. I know June is watching over all of us. We can all feel blessed, for not everybody gets to know who their Guardian Angel is, but we on the list do! Some day down the road, we will all be with her again.
"Down the road there will be a fork. One fork will be a miracle for me, the other fork will lead me home to be with my Lord. I am comfortable with either"
She was my bolster and my friend, and I am simply devastated.
I am very sorry. Please tell Dean that my thoughts and prayers are with him and their family in the nights and days ahead. I wish that I lived in NY or near NY so I could comfort the mourners and celebrate the life of this brilliant and spiritually beautiful woman.
Writing replies on the list is mentally demanding and time consuming task. Putting in the right information, separating facts from opinions, and putting it all in a message that conveys support.
June answered many of my general (posted to the list) posts and all my private e-mail (posted directly to her). I have read and learned from many of her replies to other peoples questions.
Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary defines Compassion as 'sympathetic consciousness of others' distress together with a desire to alleviate it'
I think June was dedicated and compassionate. I will miss her knowledge and warmth.
I was extremely saddened and shocked to hear of June's passing. I met her once at the Miami if seminar several years ago and immediately sensed that she was a person of warmth and compassion. She was a very knowledgeable and caring MM patient and was always ready to provide advice and sympathy to the MM community. She will be sorely missed. My condolences to her loving family.
Everyone has said such wonderful things about this great lady. I never had the opportunity to meet her but she was always there to answer. Seeing such outpouring from this list I only hope her family and friends outside of our list will be able to understand how many lives she has touched. My prayers are with her family.
I was stunned tonight to find we have lost such a prominent member of our List. I first had contact with June early in October when she sent me an introductory pack not long after joining the List. Since then she has responded with practical answers to some of my questions and I had come to feel she was definitely a stalwart of this group of compassionate friends. Now that I can see how much she was loved by all who had met her I feel privileged to have known June through the list. I send my deepest condolences to her family and friends. She must have been a truly special person. Her Aussie Mates will miss her greatly. Regards from PERTH, Western Australia.
I'd like to add my tribute to June. As she did for so many others, she reached out to me, offering good advice and an invitation to sleep at her home because I had a long trip to the Tarrytown meetings. We didn't only talk about myeloma, but pets, family, other things. Most of all, I will remember her unconquerable spirit, kindness, and grace. She will certainly be missed.
I just wanted to express my condolences to you on the passing of June. She was a special friend and inspiration to all of us, but I know she had an extra special relationship with you. She will be missed, both by the IMF and all of the myeloma patients around the country that she helped.
I'm very sad to hear of June's death. You're right, Mike--she made tremendous contributions to this list. During the past year I've had some "one-on-one" correspondence with her in addition to our posts to the entire list. Although she and I didn't always agree 100% on certain issues, particularly in the realm of some the "alternative treatments", we came to respect each other's opinions and, I believe, moved much closer to agreeing with each other in recent months. We'll miss her very much.
DAMN. I feel so cheated; I had so hoped to finally meet this incredible woman at the January IMF Seminar. Every contact with her - on the list or privately - radiated care and compassion...and humor.
Let each of us honor her memory by vowing to make more people aware of this hideous illness that has now claimed a true angel. Call or write your local newspaper and try to interest them in an article about myeloma. Or simply offer support to someone on this line who is in need. Reach out. That's what June did, and that's what we all need to do.
We need money to find a cure. The world cannot keep losing people like June.
What a sad day.
I know that June's passing is going to hit my brother hard. (Even though he won't let anyone know) I get to feeling sometimes that my brother doesn't have myeloma, or even that yes, ok, he has it, but he's going to be the miracle of this cancer because he's doing so well. I try to bring myself back to reality, but it's so hard, you know? I get so scared every time I hear someone has passed on. Especially when they're so young. It's like reliving the moment my brother finally told me what myeloma was.
May her family know no more sorrow. We carry the pain with us.
What a loss to her family and to all of us. I read Mike's message over and over. Even though we knew June's condition was deteriorating I still couldn't believe the news. Her care and concern circled the globe. On many occasions her individual replies to me were just what I needed at the time. And she would write again in a few days to find out how I was managing. That's what impressed me so much. Not only her immediate response, but her continuing concern. She will be remembered all around the world for her wit and wisdom and she gives us all a model to aspire to.
There's not too much I can add to what everyone has said about June and the meaning her life and spirit had for all of us.
I considered June to be a personal friend and advisor -- phone calls and visits always were filled with new information and encouragement. She gave of herself generously and graciously.
When it is finished, my translation of the German-language MM Patient Handbook, a project June pursued with great interest, will be dedicated to her.
It is a shame about June by we all have to say," She is finally at peace with God' and can't feel pain any more.
Thank you for your message concerning June Brazil. I do not know her, but I believe God especially will reward those who suffer and yet manage to remain optimistic and cheerful. I will pray for you who knew and loved June. My husband died on August 31 after a lengthy battle with amyloids. You never stop asking "why?" but if you can answer that question with, "You, God, are sovereign and I will trust you." Then you will experience peace and comfort that June's suffering is behind her.
I don't generally comment to the whole list on someone's death because it happens much too frequently with this disease. However, June was quite special and deserves much praise. She always seemed to have time to respond to questions with thoughtful, intelligent insights...and she knew when to respond to the whole list or keep it one-on-one. She was definitely a good lady, and my prayers go out to her and her family.
Mike-In addition to expressing my thoughts on line to the group, I wanted to reach out to you directly. As you can see all of our hearts are heavy and hurting as we all felt we lost a dear dear friend. I know that you in fact did. May you be comforted, in addition to June's family, by the outpouring. May we all emulate her great virtues and character and in her merit only be able to share good news and simchas in the future.
Thank you Mike. I am simply too upset to be eloquent. This says it for me also. We have lost a real gem.
We lost June this morning. She was my bolster and my friend, and I am simply devastated. I'm sorry I can't be eloquent about this, I will miss her wise counsel and indomitable spirit.
June would be very upset with me for what I am feeling now. I feel so unbelievably mortal and more than a little bit scared. June was the person I quoted to my family and doctors and I not only respected her opinions and knowledge but depended on her as "the survivor". I recounted her story about her spinal collapse many times and every time we go over a pothole I think of her and her courage. I met June in Miami last year and found her to be as inspiring in person as she was online. I will miss her terribly. All my sympathy to her family and to all of us on the list.
Please give my deepest sympathy to the family. God has called another angel home. The family will be in my prayers.
I feel a deep personal loss at the passing of June Brazil. Although I never met her in person, she was always there for me when I had questions about my 77 year old mother with MM. No question was ever too trivial for her and although June must have answered the same questions numerous times, there was never any sense of her ever being annoyed. June gave me such valuable information. I learned a great deal from June. I know she probably saved my mother's life on a couple of occasions with the information she gave me and I took to my mother's hem/onc. She also referred me to Dr. Siegel in Morristown and told me to contact her after my mother had her appointment, which I did. I regularly contacted June with questions. And when she recently posted how ill she was, I was deeply saddened that I was not in the position to offer her the help she offered to me.
This is truly a sad, sad day. I haven't been able to stop crying since I read about June. I will miss her terribly. I send my deepest sympathies to June's family. She was a great lady.
When I first joined the list it was the voices of June and Joe that gave Bernie & me continuing hope, along with terse, great advice and info. I have never understood how their minds absorbed so much information about MM, or for that matter, where in 24 hours did they find time to read and learn so much. And to answer so many questions in a clear and straightforward way.
We met both June & Joe in Rye, NY. I am so thankful to have had that privilege. In their individual ways both cared so much about others, and continued helping clear up to the very hour when they were called home. They have been an example in courage, love and giving.
God bless June's family at this difficult time. They must be so proud to have belonged to her.
Hey, it's hard to type with tears running down my face!
I was deeply saddened to hear the news of June's passing. While I didn't know her personally, she was a member of "our " family, and she will be sorely missed. I am grateful for the contributions she has made to this list and for the words of encouragement she has provided me in the past. She fought a tough battle. My heart goes out to her family, and I will pray for them.
I have only met June once at a Myeloma support group meeting in November. She had just been released from the hospital and only stayed at the meeting for a short time because she was feeling weak. The strength and character as well as sense of humor that she displayed, radiated the room. My thoughts and prayers are with her family.
What can I add to what has been said already? In my 3 years on this list June has been there to answer questions, to encourage and give hope to us all. My heart is indeed heavy today that we and the world have lost this remarkable women. I cannot stop crying this morning. I know that our grief cannot be compared with that of her family who have lost such a remarkable wife and Mom. June, you were well loved and will be missed by so many. I only hope that as time heals her family, they will be consoled by this knowledge.
Although I did not know her.....I am very sad to hear of Junes passing. May she now be at peace.....and pain free....I pray that her family will find comfort in knowing she was such an inspiration to many of us here and that she is now at a "better" place.....With great emotion I will pray for us all.
Before I found this list, I never knew how it was possible to feel so close to people who I'd never met. I am devastated by this news. June's humor, wisdom and compassion were such a source of strength and encouragement for so many of us. Her life is now a finished work of art - and what a beautiful picture. Her spirit shone through all her messages and that is what lives on. My thoughts and best wishes are with her family and friends at this time. May she rest in peace.
How sad it is to lose someone this time of year,especially someone like June. As a supporter of a loved one with cancer, I know she helped many, and it is up to all of us that are left behind to continue the courage and inspiration she gave so unselfishly. May God bless her family.
I have no words to express. It's hard to accept it's true. Whenever there was a crisis with my father, I always arranged a consultation with Dr. Durie and called June. One time last winter when I told her that my father couldn't eat, she sent me by overnight courier something to try to enhance his appetite (wrapped in chanukah paper) at expense to herself. Of course, she made you feel like your problems were the only ones in the world. Now I see how many of us were treated the same way. It's a sad, sad day.
June. Please accept our Prayers and sincere hope for a cure of this terrible disease.
My screen is blurred by the tears but I feel compelled to express my love and appreciation for June. I was blessed by her strength, intelligence, generosity, and dear spirit. I was especially blessed to share time with her at a couple of the patient/family conferences...most recently Los Angeles. At that conference it was obvious that the monster disease was advancing in her body but there was no evidence that her fighting spirit and eternal optimism were in any way affected. June was there for all of us...I am sure that she never deleted a question because she felt someone else on the list would answer it. Her wealth of knowledge and her willingness to take the time and energy to share it with us has surely prolonged the quality of life for hundreds as well as giving hope and reassurance to thousands of loved ones and caregivers. As my tribute to this one of a kind human being I am sending a donation to IMF in her memory today. More importantly, I will be less likely to use that delete button when I feel I have something to contribute to the list that may be helpful. My heart, prayers and sympathy go out to June's "boys", the term I heard her use to describe her family.
June was the person who helped me find this board when my late father was diagnosed with mm last November. she helped us so much in that year. she had so much vitality and determination. i felt that if only we could do what June was doing, my father would live another 15 years. through her own example, she gave us hope when we needed it the most.
Words cannot express the feeling I have from hearing this news. My prayers go out to her and her family. We will miss her.!
I too am devastated by June's death. It took me a while this morning to comprehend what I was reading in Mike's message.
June was an amazing person. She was ALWAYS there for people, no matter what. Like Peter, I always felt June to be "bionic". She was always bouncing back from the many problems that plagued her the last couple of years. She was a fighter, and she fought for so many people.
I truly hope that her family knows just how much she helped SO many people. She was the most unselfish person I've ever known. Her family should be so very proud of her.
To Mike and all of June's family and cherished friends, you have my heartfelt sympathies. Yes, the world has lost a most amazing woman. I will never forget her.
I'm like the rest of you about June, When Carl passed away she was there writing to me and giving me support. She was a caring person. I do know what the family is going thur. I will be praying for the family and for everyone that knew her. She was a great person and friend. God Bless.
As I sit here with tears, I am very saddened by June's death. Although I never got the chance to meet June in person. She was one of the first ones to reach out and help Vicki and I. She will never be forgotten, and her legacy lives forever in our hearts.
I am just devastated by Juneís death - she was so much larger than life. I first met her on the list Hem-Onc in December 1996. Gosh, was that only three years ago? She became my "heroine" and I told her that on many occasions. I tried to model my own "ministry" with myeloma friends after her own, but Iím still in awe of all she managed to do regardless of her own personal problems.
June combined some interesting talents. She had become well versed in both Eastern and Western healing arts, but she also knew well the limitations of both. She had little patience with those who would worship solely at either of those altars when it came to myeloma treatment. But I think it was her humanity, her compassion, her caring that stood out in my mind. While her knowledge was impressive, her humanity was prodigious - and compelling to me. Iíd like to think that much of what anyone might find to be "good" in my own myeloma ministry is a reflection of what I learned from June.
The only person with myeloma whom Iíve known longer than June is Mike Katz. And we all know that Mike is bionic and will be with us forever. I had hoped that June would also prove bionic but, alas, she has graduated. I feel such a terrible loss, but I know that June would just encourage me - and you - to fill in those gaps that are now left. We know how; she taught us that.
And we still have her (and our) good friend Mike.
I feel so terribly sad this morning... but I know that I have been so wonderfully blessed by these past three years with her.
June - I love you very much and I miss you.
I sit here with tears running down my face, mad as hell that we had to lose another one! I have seen June's signature here many a time since the first day of the existence of this forum. Christmas is so hard anyway, and losing someone who's been so visible feels like losing another member of this family...which in fact, has happened.
But as I told John, catch the wings of an angel on your way out...you'll be dancing across the heavens, laughing with delight that you're no longer bound by these earthly problems. And a whole universe is waiting there to greet you!!!!! Our loss, THEIR gain!
June was the first one to contact me when I joined the list in July. I bothered her with questions, and never knew until sometime later, how desperately ill she was. She. like so many others on this list, serve as light to guide us all into the uncertainty of this illness. I am saddened beyond words right now but hope her family is able to take comfort in knowing what a wonderful support she was to so many of us.
I just wanted to say that June helped my family through this MM nightmare. And I pray that her family is comforted by the work June did that will carry on, help so many.
I can't say how deeply sorry I am to hear this. This autumn I feared it, but I hoped not.
I met June, once, in Boston in 1997, and I liked her personality, instantly. I can't explain why, but it was something with her look which caught me. It was great to exhcange meanings and ideas with June. I never understood how she had time to do all what she did and to gather all the knowledge which she had, to the benefit for us all.
I will miss her dearly.
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