This weekend while we were on the road, I thought a lot about my friend Bea Williams. Not sure why she was on my mind, but there it is. I kept thinking about how generous she always was with young writers like me (back when I was young) and wondered if she knew what a force for good she'd been in our writing community, especially now that she is no longer writing and lives in a retirement center.
I made a vow to call her this week and check in.
Just heard from a mutual friend, Emma Lou Thayne, who told me Bea has passed. The last time I saw both Bea and Emma Lou, we had lunch together in the dining room where Bea resided. Bea told us (with great enthusiasm) about a young artist named Aklane who paints pictures of Jesus. Bea called Barnes and Noble as we spoke and had them deliver two copies of Aklane's book right then and there so that Emma Lou and I could take them home with us.
I was surprised for a number of reasons by Bea's interest in the artist. But I gratefully accepted the gift. Just as I gratefully accepted and continue to acknowledge all the many gifts she shared with so many of us over the years.
Thank you, Bea. RIP.