Hope For Those Who Hurt Home

Tributes From Friends on Jeanne Tomlinsonís Homegoing
June 1, 2000

Berit Kjos
Joni Eareckson Tada
Poem: What Cancer Cannot Do
Poem: A Tribute to Jeanne Tomlinson, by Mary Butchkavitz

Pat Davila Shari Wiseman Trudy Newman
Kathy Butcher Kris Sandoval cousin
Corrie Lyons Paul, Marcia, and Adrianna Queen Marcia Gladwish
Darin and Karen Evans Barbara Judi
Marie Ashenfalder Mary Jan Klooster
Gayle Cloud Anne Huff Steve Tomlinson, Howie's brother
Amy Layton Barbara Shafer Ron & Mom
Susan Stokka Michele Sharon Cory
David Johns Arnette Cratty, Jeanne's cousin Tom and Dee Anna Drake
Sue Anderson Joanne, Oregon Deborah Starr
Trudy Newman Debby Derrick Warfel
Patrick, Maria and Sarah Curran David and Judy Klanke Rosemarie Ihde
Michele Karen Mercaldo Lorraine Sandgren
Linda Adrian Ed Back Rick Townsend article
Michelle Rose, Jeanne's niece Carpenter family Wilson family

I was just getting ready to write you a card but thought maybe you would like me to email instead. Jeanne, although we have known each other a very short time and only through Home Interiors and the Loopers email list, I feel very close to you and you know how much I care about you and Howie. I pray for you both and I wish I could be with you to hold your hand and give you all the hugs that I have been saving up through all these days. How I wish we could take a walk down one of the beautiful beaches here in Florida and marvel at the magnificence of the ocean!
I still dream of the day when we will do that and you will teach me and guide me to a greater faith. You are my special angel and if I could pick a sister to love I would pick you. God bless you.
Maggie Flynn

I am so sorry for your loss. I was listening to Jeanne's song when your e-mail came in. I am glad God was merciful and did not let her suffer long. Jeanne was, and is, and always be, a testimony of his strength.
Pat Davila

Thank you for your faithfulness in keeping us aware of Jeanne's and Howie's conditions over the last weeks. Even though I have never met them, I have been a member of Jeanne's prayer loop since she started it and have appreciated her spiritual maturity and sensitivity.

I praise the Lord that He took her and did not allow her suffering to be prolonged. I had just finished listening to Jeanne sing her Scripture song when your email arrived, announcing her home-going.

Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you during this difficult time. I look forward to the time when we will all gather at Jesus's feet -- to meet our Savior and each other face-to-face.

Blessings to you and your family,
Shari Wiseman
Findlay, OH

I think that losing someone we love is the hardest thing that we have to face in this world. I send you my sincerest condolences. My prayers continue for you and Jeanne's family and loved ones, and especially for Howie.

David, thank you for your sensitive Christian updates. It was very encouraging to see how you always lifted up the Lord during this great trial.

Love in Christ,
Trudy Newman

I was able to share your web page on Jeanne and Howie with Mary, a friend of mine. As both my friend and I are disabled with chronic illness, you will never know how edifying Jeanne and Howie's testimony was for us--especially since both my friend and I have been subjected to the false health, wealth and prosperity doctrine.

With permission, I pass along my friend's comments that she sent me after reading your web page.

Surely Jeanne's testimony and witness shall continue to live on and encourage and strengthen others, and will be a special blessing for those who are disabled with chronic conditions.

I pray that our God of all comfort, will continue to comfort you and all who have been touched by Jeanne's passing.

Love in Christ,
Trudy Newman

Jeanne brought so many people together. We prayed together for the needs she gathered online, and it was powerful. She shared herself and became our dear friend, though I for one never met her and now it wont happen till I'm taken home too. But I felt like I knew her, I surely loved her. She was such a comfort to me and my dear daughter-in-law, Ann Marie, who had a brain tumor which doctors say will come back and yet she finds joy in life. Jeanne's books helped and encouraged Ann Marie and the others in her brain tumor support group at our St. Joseph Mercy Hospital here in Ann Arbor. Every day it was Jeanne's emails I went to first. They were always full of praise for our Lord or asking for prayer. And she was a wonderful correspondent.

Her going home will leave a huge hole in our hearts, an empty feeling online. My heart goes out to Howie and both their wonderful families. May God bless and comfort all of us who will greatly miss her. In Christ's abundant love,

Kathy Butcher

David, Thank you for sharing your sister's life with us. At the beginning when she first asked loopers to please pray for Howie and again later when she was first diagnosed. I was compelled to write to her and tell her that I was AMAZED by her love, faith and peace after all they have had to face. She was an inspiration to me. I have read every word from and about her and still was amazed at her peace. Thank you for continuing to share her love of God with us and at such a difficult time in our your lives. She will not be forgotten.

Bless you all,
Kris Sandoval
Colorado Springs

My dear Julia, I just went to the website. It is beautiful. It meant so much to see their faces. I am crying too right now. They are suffering so much pain. They are such special people. I can see the Lord in their faces. I can see the love and good in them. It is so hard for me to comprehend this sorrowful, painful situation and if it were not for their own words, the faith in God that they write about, I would still be angry because these two people should not suffer. The scriptures and songs that they have on their web site gave me faith in spite of their pain and helped me not to be angry. It hurts to lose people like them. This world is full of immoral, unfaithful, disrepectful people. Everyday is a struggle, I am at war with the people that I interface daily because these people lack what the Tomlinson's have. I can only believe that God is taking them for a reason even though we need their help here on earth, God must want them very badly. I love you Julia, I feel badly that you are going through so much, Your dad, Virginia and I know how much you love Jeanie and Howard.

I will pray for them and you and for all of us.

God Bless.
Lov cousin

My deepest sympathy on the loss of your dear, dear sister, Jeanne. She is now free from her worldly pains and suffering but all left here on earth will surely miss her. She was the kindest, sweetest, most caring person. She touched so many here on this computer list; and even more than we will ever know. She was a blessing to all who knew her and of her and an inspiration to us all also. Please pass on my sympathy to Howie and the rest of your families. I am so sad but also at peace with the fact that she no longer must endure the pain of her illness. She has reached her peace...and is with the Lord and will continue to spread His love. I will never forget her, ever.

Corrie Lyons

My prayers are with you and your family. Jeanne is a very special person, who has touched my life deeply, and I know she has touched many more. I feel privileged to have known her and to have had the opportunity to meet her in person. We are sad to lose her, but glad that she is with the Lord. She was truly a wonderful person.

May God bless you and your family.
Paul, Marcia, and Adrianna Queen

Thank you, David, for your faithfulness. Thank you for keeping the witness of Jeanne's faith, peace, and perseverance fresh before our eyes -- encouraging us to likewise remain faithful to our Shepherd.

Thank you, Lord, for Jeanne's life! Thank you for an end to pain and suffering. Thank you for her new body and for the pure, unmitigated joy of your presence. Thank you for filling her here on earth with Your beautiful life so that Your love through her could touch people around the world. Thank you for the eternal blessing of such a friend!

David, her death seems so unreal. I still see her sparkling smile and hear her loving voice in my mind. I remember so well sitting in their living room, watching her play the guitar and singing the beautiful songs God had given her. Howie would share the Scriptures he had memorized, and together we praised our wonderful God.

I remember our special gathering at your parents' wonderful retreat center. Jeanne had worked so hard to bring everyone together. Few understood today's changing world better that her, yet her focus remained on Jesus, not the earthly crisis. He was her life. It seemed that nothing gave her more joy than encouraging and equipping others to follow Him and stand firm in His truth. What a special friend she was!

I'm going to miss her deeply. So will the countless Christians around the world to whom she has ministered His love and truth. It's still a shock to consider how quickly her earthly life ebbed, but it is a joy to remember how wonderfully His heavenly life filled her to overflowing as her body grew weaker and weaker.

I thank God for you, David, for the rest of your family, and for Howie and his parents -- all of whom continue to share God's goodness through Jeanne with others. I thank Him for the truths in your hearts that will help sustain all of you through this time of grief.

I pray especially for Howie who is left alone for the moment. The two have been so close, but they obviously knew well that this separation would be temporary, and that an eternity of joy with Jesus awaited them both. (2 Cor. 4:16-18)

One of my favorite hymns, All the Way my Savior Leads Me, is flowing through my mind right now. The last verse opens a window into that heavenly reality that Jeanne has already seen:

All the way my Savior leads me
O the fullness of His love!
Perfect rest to me is promised
In my Father's house above.
When my spirit, clothed immortal,
Wings its flight to realms of day
This my song through endless ages:
Jesus led me all the way.

May He continue to comfort and bless you and your family through the coming days of grief and sorrow and joy and celebration.

With His love,
Berit Kjos

Dear David,
I want to thank you for your updates on Jeanne. I have just spent some time on the web site. It is really beautiful. Thank you for sharing all the photos and the prayer by Judy Rose and the songs. I also took the time to read several chapters of the book, and I pray it will be published. I am really sad about her home going even though I know she is with Jesus. I'll just miss her. She was a wonderful friend to me, always an encouragement. My love and prayers to you and your family.

In Jesus, Marcia Gladwish

Dear Dave,
We were saddened to hear of Jeanne's passing. Her obvious love for the Lord and her gentle and quiet spirit were a blessing to those of us that knew her. Please give our condolences to the Coppedge and Rose families and, of course, to Howie. We'll be remembering all of you in prayer in the coming weeks ahead.

Trusting in the strength and comfort our Lord provides,
Karen and Darin Evans

Oh, Dave! I'm so sorry for you and Howie and your families!!! :'-( Jeanne is a very special person, with a marvelous spirit... a spirit and person who now lives in paradise. The more genuinely honest and loving the person, the more they will be missed. She is a remarkable example of faithfulness and one whom God loves.

Darling Jeanne is in a much better place than here! Our Lord is faithful to His promise and He has a house with many rooms prepared just for us!

Knowing that makes our burdens a little easier to bear, but we still feel an emptiness and sorrow for our own loss. Perhaps Jeanne's freedom from pain and suffering will make your sorrow less painful, but please know your family will continue to be in my prayers.

Please accept my great sadness at Jeanne's passing from this life and praise to our Father for her entry into life everlasting.

We will miss her tremendously.
Love in Christ,

I know you're going to innundated with e-mails today. I am so sorry about Jeanne, yet I rejoice that she is with her Lord (Our Lord!) and is free from the bondage, pain, and suffering she endured these past few months.

I shall miss her encouragement and her kindness that she showed to me and my husband during the last year. I shall be praying for you, your family, and especially for Howie.

Thank you for taking the time to put up the website in her honor. It is a blessing to me and my husband.


Dear Dave and Family:
Please accept my sincere sympathy for the loss of your dear sister Jeanne. I have known by following the emails that Jeanne's time was probably drawing near, but still this morning when I logged on, I did not expect to read that the time had indeed come. I am thinking of you and your family now, and especially of Howie. I have been following Jeanne's story of Howie from the time I joined Loopers in early 1999, and had emailed my support to her each time she updated us. At the time, I thought she was an especially courageous woman. When I learned of her own trials early this spring, I thought, really Lord, how much more is one couple to endure? I now know that He has chosen Howard and Jeanne and led them to us through this online community to show us how to serve Him, and also to teach us about FAITH. Through my tears and sorrow this morning, I have to keep going back to Jeanne and Howie's courage and faith, and be comforted that Jeanne is now at peace. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

In Peace and Faith,
Marie Ashenfalder
Nazareth, PA

To Jeanne's Family,

My (our) most heartfelt sympathies to each and everyone of you, especially Howie. My heart breaks for such a lovely, beautiful lady who has gone from you. I know she's in our God's good hands and will be watching over all of us. May God bring you all inner peace and comfort as you go through this next journey.

Mary (son, Stephen, 41 y.o. -brainstem)

PS: My husband & I met Jeanne & Howie at a Sept. 99 conference in NJ. What a beautiful couple - what strength they had for all.

Dear Howie and David and family of Jeanne,

I am so sorry to hear of Jeanne's passing. I'm crying here and trying to sort out what I want to say. I know she is whole again, in no pain, with her beloved Lord and Saviour ..... but the sadness of her loss is hurting.

I had come on to the brain tumour list one year ago last month. It was such a chaotic, scary time, and I was desperate. Reading Jeanne's posts always lifted me and directed me back to God. We sent for the devotional book and read it, both my husband and I, in the car on a trip; we were very moved and blessed....

I also had sent your letters on to my sister and her husband, missionaries in Ecuador, who have been including you all in their prayer groups.

Go to the Rock that is higher than you. He knows all things and has huge arms.
He loves you all.

Jan Klooster, mother of Dan, dx 5/99

Jeanne has been such an inspiration as has her entire family. My heart grieves with you but rejoices with Jeane as she is now in the glorious presence of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

I met Jeanne and Howie last May at a conference on education at Cal State Northridge. I was a parent panelist and am now an elected school board member in Riverside. She will always be an inspiration to me.

Love and prayers,
Gayle Cloud
Riverside, CA

Thank you for taking the time to share this with those of us who have prayed and grieved and rejoiced with the Tomlinson's in their struggles and their victories. Tell Howie that our prayers are with him and the rest of the family. God Bless you all.

In Christ's Love,
Anne Huff

Dear Dave,
Thanks for all your up dates and your work on the web page. I look forward to meeting you in NY. I have felt somewhat removed from everything here in Wheaton, IL but your letters have been a great help. My last words to Jeanne were an expression of appreciation for the way she cared for Howard and how I believe God clearly intended for them to be together. It is very hard to say good by but like King David we say, "I will go to her, but she will not return to me" (2 Sam. 12:23). In that statement there is great hope yet pain - How wonderful that we have such a compassionate savior in Jesus.

God Bless You,
Steve Tomlinson

I'm not very good at this, comforting one who is mourning, but I had to tell you that your sister touched my life by helping me stay strong in the faith through her prayer loop. I knew she was a beautiful person on the inside, and I see that she was also beautiful on the outside as well, her eyes show how tender-hearted she was. As I was praying for you and the rest of your family last night, the Lord kept telling me that though she will be missed dearly, she is in Jesus' arms right at this moment, and I couldn't help but feel so happy for her, that it would be tragic if she didn't know HIM, but praise God, she did and she planted seeds all over the world with her strong faith (thank You, Lord, for email). Please know that you and your family are in my family's prayers.

In His Neverending Love,
Amy Layton, wife to Ray, mother to Victoria, Patrick, and Alex

Dear Dave,
You may feel to include this in Jeanne's memory book.

In loving memory of Jeanne,
From Barbara Shafer, Libertyville, IL.

I will remember Jeanne Tomlinson always. I will remember her as one of God's finest examples of a godly woman pursuing her love of Christ in everything she did. I cannot remember the date when Jeanne first contacted me, but I will always remember the content of her e-mail.

I had submitted a post to an education loop and used the example of the Shepherd leaving the ninety-nine sheep in safety to rescue the one that was lost in reference to education. Jeanne wrote to me, praising my evangelistic heart. No one had ever said that to me before and I cried because it was so sweet of her to take time to notice my tiny insecure steps of faith. I truly felt that she was an instrument of God's blessing and encouragement for me. I considered her compliment to be an even greater honor when she invited me to participate on the prayer loop she was moderating.

Jeanne was obediently responding to the Great Commission and the Great Commandment in her everyday life. She remains among my most treasured role models: godly woman and wife, blessed marriage and family, obedient woman of God, faithful servant of Christ, humble bearer of her cross, leader among faithful brothers and sisters, dedicated follower of our Lord Jesus, and loving child of God.

There are people who consider the Internet to be "bad news." But I've found remarkable friendships with exemplary individuals as God uses the Internet to connect us, as His Body, to spread His Good News. Jeanne made a positive contribution to this in her lifetime and will now continue in this memorial ministry.

Indeed, she impacted my life, brought blessing and encouragement, focus and strength. She led by example in a day and age that role models are hard to find. I loved Jeanne as my friend. I will miss her dearly. I pray that her legacy of giving will return an enormous harvest for our Redeemer. I'm thankful for her service to God, for her kindness to her brothers and sisters, and for her willingness to share out of her storehouses for our benefit. I'm thankful God blessed me for this moment in time by letting me call her "friend." I believe with all my heart Jeanne has already heard, "Well done, my good and faithful servant."

Thank you, Jeanne, for gracing my life. Praise be to God, for giving her life and blessing us with a heart so beautiful as Jeanne's.
Barbara Shafer

Hi there, [to the Croyts]

Your mother and I have a couple friends that lead the Prayer Loop. Howie has been sick for all of the time that we have known them. He has had six brain tumor operations. They both have been a very good example of God's love. Even though they have been through a great deal of pain and pressures, they both have been reaching out to others to show God's love.

Well, 70 days ago, Jeanne was diagnosed with brain tumors too. She has not been as lucky as Howie. Her health has gone down rapidly. We heard that she died last night. They both were in the same convalescent room until she was rushed to the hospital. After the family and doctors realized that there was nothing else that could be done, she was moved back to Howie's room. She died within a few hours with Howie and family by her side.

I guess what I got out of this is that time is so short and we need to take advantage of all of it that we can. Give Angela an extra long hug before you go to work and special attention when you get home. We have no idea how long we each have.

I will take this time to express our feelings too. We love you very much and are extremely proud of the man you have become. We don't have to do things, just being close to you is special.

Angela is a very special person and we love her as our daughter. We are very happy that you both are together. We pray that your years together will be many.

I need to run. Take care of each other.

Ron & Mom

How could we do any less! Jeanne was a precious soul, whose quiet faith resonated loudly from her inner being! I shall always remember her gentle presence, sweet smile, love for her husband and her love for our Lord and Savior!

I shall also remember your love for Jeanne! I can only hope that just one of my 11 living brother and sisters could love me as much and in such a way as you have loved Jeanne!

This verse still hangs on our wall, 14 years after the passing of our precious son, Eric: "Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints" Psalms 116:15. Now it hangs to honor Jeanne too!

PS: Please add my words to her memorial website.....sjs
In His love,
Susan J. Stokka (Sue)

"Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9 (NKJV)

My deepest condolences. My heart is very sad. Jeanne was one of the most inspirational women I have ever had the pleasure of writing to on line. My prayers go out to Howard and all the family. I am sorry for your great loss. Michele w/o Terry GBM IV 5/97-12/98

I am so sorry to hear that Jeanne is at the end. She was indeed a beautiful soul who was always there with a personal word of comfort and wisdom, for me, when my own dear sweat sister Erlyce was dying of brain cancer.

I know, just as you know now, that Erlyce went to live with God. It however, does not lessen our missing the one we love. It is hard to say goodbye. It always has been and it always will be. I remember when I stood beside Erlyces bed and held her hand and said some prayers and some Psalms with her, I told her to say Hi to Mom and Dad and tell them I would be joining them also when the Lord decided it was my time to go.

I guess what I am saying is I know how much you hurt right now. May the Lord be with you, May he watch over you and bring you peace. Thank You Lord for sending Jeanne to me when I so desperately needed her. Thank you for letting me get to know this beautiful lady. Amen.

Sharon Cory

We are overcome with grief at the suffering that both Jeannie and Howie have suffered these last 70 days. Reading your last emails, Suzanne was in tears as we heard the end of Jeannie's earthly trials. Her example of how to endure under trial and that of Howie's has been a model for all of us. Thank you so much for keeping us informed. We have not ceased to pray that God's spirit would strengthen both of them and that if it was His will, they both be healed so that they could comfort others in the future. Howie's faith must be so strong to endure not only his own physical problems, but also the mental anguish of losing someone he loves so much.

I taught chapel at my children's school a couple of weeks ago. I read some of the emails that you sent but had to stop because I became too emotional. I do not know of anyone who has had to endure such major trials in their lives as both Jeannie and Howie. As I looked up after reading, I noticed a few people who were wiping tears from their faces. Their story will not be forgotten. Their example of how to endure trials will be there for many of us as we face our inevitable future.

What amazes me so much about your sister and her husband is that every time I saw them they were filled with such joy. I so much enjoyed their visits to the west coast. I would only see them at church now and then but to hear how God was blessing them in their trials brought joy to my heart. How Howie could still play the trumpet after so many surgeries was astounding. My heart breaks for him.

Since God's ways are often not our ways, we often wish to question His actions, but our love for him and trust keeps us from asking them with wrong intentions. I wish I knew His plan for Howie. At one point recently he seemed to be leaving us himself. If he leaves us in the near future his mother would have been prophetic in saying that God would be using Howie and Jeannie more in death than in life. If Howie continues to improve, he will be more qualified to comfort others than anyone else I know. May God bless him and strengthen him in these days and demonstrate His abounding love.

Take care David. This must be very difficult for you to bear. By the time you get to heaven, Jeanne will know all the great places for "creation safaris". Can you imagine the beauty we will behold there? I am sure Jeanne will want to show them to you. Your work here is obviously not done. I see your name occasionally on a couple of Moody video series and heard you are giving a tour of JPL tomorrow. Your work of showing the world the beauty of God's creation in both earthly wonders and the vastness of space is a vehicle of the Holy Spirit to bring people into God's kingdom. May He bless your work.

Please tell Howie we grieve with him and that we hope he can come out to the west coast some time. I am sure Ken Story would love to have him stay at his house. Tell him if he comes to bring his trumpet.

Thanks again for all the communication and putting together the web site.

David Johns

Dear Family,

Ron and I are stunned and heartbroken over the death of Jeanne. We know you are all experiencing a combination of exquisite emotions. Please be assured of our love and prayers. Jeanne was a very special and gifted woman. I remember thinking, after we visited with her and Howie at Elsa's the end of January, that Jeanne had such a winsome spirit. She had a sweet glow about her. When I got home I put her book beside my bed and stayed up late reading it. I found it a tremendous encouragement personally as I struggled with the daily challenges of my own life.

After she was so sick I wrote her and told her she must finish the book because it has such an important message for all of us. She obviously was not able to finish it the way she had origionally planned, but perhaps she can finish it in another way -- by her story being told and the addition of all the words to her beautiful songs, etc.

Please be assured of our love and concern. We grieve with you. But, rejoice in her victory. Ron and I have been camping on the following scripture this past week. Perhaps it will encourage you as it has us. " The Lord will keep you from all harm, he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore." Psalm 121:7-8

Love in Christ, Arnette (Jeanne's cousin)

Dear David...

All of us here at Joni and Friends were stunned to hear of Jeanne's homegoing. It has made us all feel nearer to heaven. And, oh, how we will be praying for Howie!

Jeanne's homegoing reminds me that soon and very soon heaven will break on the horizon and we will be with our loved ones... with Jesus who will personally wipe away our tears.

Dave, would you please pass on the words to the following hymn to the rest of the family, especially Howie? Our warmest and deepest condolesenses... our sympathetic thoughts are with you!

Day is dying in the west; Heaven is touching earth with rest;
Wait and worship while the night sets her evening lamps alight
through all the sky.

Lord of life, beneath the dome of the universe, Thy home,
Gather us who seek Thy face to the fold of Thy embrace,
for Thou art nigh.

While the deepening shadows fall, heart of love enfolding all,
Through the glory and the grace of the stars that veil Thy face,
our hearts ascend.

When forever from our sight pass the stars, the day, the night,
Lord of angels, on our eyes let eternal morning rise and shadows end.

Many blessings...
Joni Eareckson Tada

We wanted to express our heartfelt condolences on the homegoing of your sister. We spent quite a bit of time looking at the web site a couple of nights ago; we were saddened by the news, especially for Howie. I last saw Jeanne and Howie at the Grace Christmas concert - she made it a point to come up and say hello. Thank you for making the effort to put the tribute to her together; it was very meaningful, especially being able to read the lovely things others had to say about her. Our prayers are with you all.

May the peace and comfort of our blessed Father and Lord Jesus Christ be with you in the days ahead. Jeanne was truly a lovely and gentle Christian lady, and we will always remember her.

Tom and Dee Anna Drake

My sympathies to Howie, you and the rest of Jeanne's family. She was such a courageous woman, and such a source of strength and comfort for so many of us who traveled this very difficult journey with she and Howie.

She is at peace now; in the arms of her Lord and celebrating her reunion with the other angels who were waiting for her return.

Sue Anderson

Jeanne and I used to email before she got sick. She used to update me on Howies' progress. Then her sickness. Everyday I would pray for them, after I read their updates. I knew the inevitable. I have taken care of many of my friends with cancer. I didn't know her for very long. I'm sure she has touched many people, including myself. The Doctors and nurses surely saw the Christianity and I'm sure they heard her testimony. We probably will never know how many will come to Christ, because of Jeanne and Howie. She is pain free, but that doesn't stop the grieving and the awful pain of missing your loved one.

Your friend in Christ, Joanne from Oregon

I want to tell all of you what my dearest friend "Jeanne" did for me and my family.

I remember one Night Jeanne asked me what I thought of beginning a side Group of the LOOP and have a "Prayer LOOP" for all of those whom would needed fellowship with other Brothers and Sisters in Christ? I told her that I felt like that was a wonderful idea, as many of us were going through so many Trials in our life that we All needed the Companionship of all our Brothers and Sisters at this time and in the days, years ahead! So, Jeanne and Howie began the "Prayer Loop," and knowing them as well as I did from y ears back, I knew we were brought together for this reason, Prayer and help for each other! At that time my family and I were up against the Occult in the battles here in "Springfield, Missouri," and "Jeanne" asked all that could to Call the "Sheriff" here and seek help for me and my family that we needed desparately as they were terrorizing our three children with ARMS for over a year at their windows and trying to Break-in, yet we couldn't get any help as every road I took, there was an end! Jeanne called the "Sheriff" whom is a dear friend of ours and explained too him that we needed help and that the "Police Dept.," here weren't helping us and would he see too it that we the "Christian" Family got that help, as this was totally wrong in what we had been going through day and night, which did go on until we moved and bought another house in which we after three years are just now getting ready too Close on this month of June 19, 2000.

This may not have came about IF it had not been for Jeanne and Howie's cosistent Prayer for us along with the Prayer LOOP that they so dedicately kept going! Jeanne called a few times and had Prayer with me and we talked for awhile each time. We had many private e-mails where Jeanne Uplifted me in the Lord and gave me Verses in the Bible too help keep me going for me and my family! I have never felt such a LOSS as I have been feeling ever since I read the Passing of my beloved friend and Sister in Christ, "Jeanne." She touched my heart so much that it is only now that I have been able too write anything, as I along with Howie, family, and friends, feel such a LOSS beyond anyones imagination!! I know that Jeanne is with the Lord and isn't suffering anymore, and I am so Thankful too HIM for that, but I am and will miss her so much that my heart aches and I wish so much that I could have been there with her and hold her hand and see her through this time before departing from us all. I was Shocked, hurt, and so worried about Howie, (still am), that I just Pray that Howie will have the Faith and the Strength to go on and finish out her and his Ministry like Jeanne would want him too! Jeanne had a Love that was so rare that she felt like she was my sister even in the flesh! Oh how beautiful she was and is now!

HE and all of us that knew Jeanne are so Proud of her and all that she did for HIM and us as well. Jeanne had a beauty outside but yet inside that many never get! Jeanne was one of a kind in this world, and so many will learn so much from the web site you've set up for her Dave! I share your Loss and pain, and it is MY Prayer that even through your pain that YOU will see that "Howie" is taken care of, as Howie was everything too Jeanne!! She often spoke too me about her family and her life in California, and how she loved all of you, but she also spoke of the Love she had that she wished others shared with their Spouses! She spoke of all of her love for her friends and her Love for Christ! It is MY Prayer that everyone will send not only Flowers for Jeanne, but a donation too you to keep her and Howie's Ministry going well and Alive! This will be OUR way of remembering our Blessed friend and keeping her Memory and Devotion Alive that will in No Doubt bring Many too CHRIST!!

My last words will be, "I Loved YOU so much Jeanne, that I will miss you like none other, but I know that YOU are so much better off now, as your not suffering, and it won't be long before WE All whom are Born-Again through Christ Jesus will be joining you," as "HE IS COMING SOON!" And her favorite way she said I always ended my letters too all was, "PRAY FOR THE PEACE OF JERUSALEM!"

May God Bless You All, and I Pray Howie will be able to come back on soon and let us help him through this loss beyond alls imagination!! I Love you Howie, and all of her family, and all of the "Prayer Loopies," and in her Memory we will keep this Ministry going that meant so much too her and me and others as well.

Deborah Starr

Hope you are having a good day. I went to that website you suggested and was amazed by the strength God has given the whole family. They must truly have joy awaiting them in Heaven for the way they are submitting to God's will. It makes me aware of my weaknesses and inspires me to put more faith in whatever may be His plan for me.


I am only one of the many on the prayer loop who have been touched by your sister's life.

Please send our blessings to the family. I know that God is your strength in this difficuly time.

We are missionaries in West Africa and have been blessed by the prayer loop minestery. I have been following Jeannie's illness and I was so sad to think that she was gone. i do know that unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies there is no fruit. So I pray that because of Jeannie's faithfullness and her FAITH. she will bear much fruit in her death. The results of her prayers will not be known for many years to come as they will brear fruit for generations.


My deepest condolances. We will all miss Jeanne. It was only a few months ago that she was vibrant and we were talking about her book at my house - and now she is with the Lord. She certainly led a life with a pure heart. At times it almost seemed like she was too good, too much an innocent for this world. My prayers are also with you and your parents. Please let them know of my sympathies. May God Bless.


Jeannie will be remembered as a very good friend. Her love and support in the different situations we were facing helped us a lot. We could see that she loved the Lord in the way she dealt with Howie's illness as well as her own terminal disease. Our daughter, Sarah, will miss Jeannie and her playing the guitar in Sunday School. We are glad that she is no longer in pain but is in heaven experiencing peace and joy with her Savior Jesus Christ. Good-bye Jeannie. We love you.

Patrick, Maria and Sarah Curran

I can't quite remember the first time I became acquainted with Jeanne via the Brain Tumor List Serve. I do know that even though I didn't have the chance to meet her and Howie in person, I feel like we were friends. She had such a wonderful gift of expressing herself and making anyone she came in contact with feel welcome. My husband, David who was diagnosed with gbm 3/97 has had upteen MRI's it seems. While he has done remarkably well (tumor came back in 8/97, resected in 8/97--stable MRI's since then), the continual fear of a recurrent tumor was there. The Lord blessed Jeanne with so many gifts--she actually brought me closer to the Lord by her remarkable faith and wisdom. I thank God for that. I am glad I taped her birthday message to David in Oct/99 and Howie's Happy Birthday song played on his trumpet. I can now replay it on David's next birthday. I do believe that you were correct when you said in one of your posts that God was using Jeanne and Howie's illnesses to minister to others. David and I would like to give monetarily to a memorial. Please let us know.

With Our Deepest Sympathy,
The Klanke's, David and Judy

Dear David, Howie and family,
My deepest sympathy to all of you. Jeanne's diagnosis with cancer and her quick passing has been very sad for me as well. I feel fortunate to have been able to meet Jeannie and Howie several times and both have touched my life in a very special way.

Last summer when I was diagnosed with cancer, Jeanne asked the prayer loop to pray and was so caring and comforting to me. I'll miss her, I'll miss her HJET@aol.com e-mails, the first ones I clicked on. I know she is now in heaven, free from pain and suffering and we all will be meeting her there too.

Last January some of the prayer loopers met with Jeanne, Howie, and mother Elsa for lunch and had a wonderful time together. I still see all three in front of me and always will. Jeanne and Howie have a permanent place in my heart.

Sharing your grief and praying for you
Rosemarie Ihde

Thank you so much for keeping us updated on Jeanne's condition. Everytime you sent an email, I would pray and hope that she had made a step toward recovery and my heart would sink a little when I saw she was getting worse. I guess that was not God's will. At least she is in peace an in no more pain. I was given this poem after a friend of the family died with cancer. If you would please pass it on to Jeanne's family, I think they might enjoy it.


Cancer is so limited . . . . . .
It can not cripple love
It can not shatter hope
It can not corrode faith
It can not eat away peace
It can not destroy confidence
It can not kill friendship
It can not silence courage
It can not invade the soul
It can not reduce eternal life
It can not quench the Spirit
It can not lessen the
power of resurrection
Let it never be said
"Jeanne lost her battle with cancer"
Cancer lost its battle with Jeanne.
The cancer is dead.
Jeanne is alive!

Thank you and I will be praying for the family.

Dear Dave and family,

I am so sad about Jeanne. I will miss her dearly, her sweetness and her Godly example. Her simple faith and untiring work for the Lord were an inspiration to me. And I know that my own sadness must pale in comparison to that of her family. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you.

I want to share something that Jeanne said to me shortly after her diagnosis. She told me that she had recently been thinking and praying about how to end her book, and had decided to end with the thought that, "when all else fails, when all earthly hope is gone, we still have the hope of heaven." Then she added, "When it came to me, I thought it was about Howie."

My friend Marilee, who is president of the Huntington Christian Women's Club (of which Jeanne was Prayer Advisor last year), told me that she had visited Jeanne and Howie when they were both in the hospital. Jeanne and Howie were together, praying, and Jeanne's back was turned to Marilee as she entered the room. Marilee touched Jeanne's arm and identified herself, and to her amazement, Jeanne and Howie began praying for her! Tears streamed down Marilee's cheeks as she witnessed the kind of selfless love and enduring faith that allowed these two, in such desperate need themselves, to reach outside of themselves and pray for their visitor.

Tomorrow morning is our Christian Women's Club board meeting. We will pay tribute to Jeanne and will pray for all of you. May the peace that passes understanding strengthen your hearts as you grieve your loss in the days and months and years to come.

Karen Mercaldo

Along with the scores of others who loved and were touched by your sister Jeannie, let me offer my sincere condolences at your loss. we are certain that Jeannie is with the Lord, but her sweet soul and special countenance will be sorely missed here on earth. may our God give you and your family His solace and His grace, and may you know the comfort that can only come from Him.

when my family and i began attending Dix Hills Evangelical Free Church, Jeannie was one of the first in the congregation to reach out to us. her love for music was contagious, and as she encouraged our three children to participate in Sunday School, they would come home and talk about the "lady with the guitar and warm smile" who taught them songs that she had written. they learned the melody and words and gestures to The Butterfly Song, one of their favorites, and several other of Jeannie's songs. she and Howie also taught the children in Sunday School, and their love for the Lord and His word was consistent .. there were Bible verses to be learned and understood, and even, occasional homework to be done. Jeannie's message was clear - love our God, learn His word, and trust everything to Him. the children received a valuable, encouraging, and life-sustaining experience in her classes.

i remember Jeannie's quiet strength as she faced each challenge with Howie. i remember her gentleness of spirit and her devoted love for him. i remember them holding hands as they sang a hymn, and i remember her compliments and public praise of Howie, with sincerity. they seemed so equally yoked, and their walk appeared to be filled with discovery and growth. they laughed together, cried together, shared their dreams with intimacy .. they surprised each other, and let one another be both weak and strong. and most importantly, i think .. they prayed together, praising God for the life they shared. they were a beautiful example of married life and love, and in spite of the difficulties they experienced, they may have tripped .. but from what i experienced of them .. they never fell down.

i recall a conversation Jeannie and i had after her diagnosis. i was coordinating food deliveries through our church, in conjunction with Bible Baptist. she was so grateful for the meals, and in spite of her discomfort and breathlessness and fatigue, she consistently ministered to ME. during the course of the conversation, she talked about the words from a popular chorus, "heaven is a wonderful place, filled with glory and grace .." Jeannie enthusiastically expressed that from the beautiful descriptions of heaven in the Bible, she just knew it was God's home and the place He's prepared for us. she quoted John 14:2 : "In my Father's house are many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you." she said that as she's read and studied God's word, the "wonderful place called heaven" became even more precious to her heart.

it was remarkable to me that in spite of her physical difficulties and lack of surety about her future, she could still reach out, and in her quiet, constant way, she professed her faith for ME. up until the very last breath she took, Jeannie was a shining example of a true disciple of our God, and she left that legacy, i think, for all of us who knew her .. to continue.

Jeannie is home. and i'm sure that when she arrived, there was a whole host of heavenly instruments and songsters to welcome her. and i think, dear family, that this extraordinary follower of our Lord is making even more beautiful music, in notes and chords that you and i can't EVEN imagine, in the presence of God.

"Jesus said unto her, 'I am the resurrection and the life. he that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.'" (John 11:25) may you know that Jeannie is experiencing great joy in the presence of Jesus .. and may Jesus be with you to tenderly comfort and assure you of His love and care.

In Him,
Lorraine Sandgren & Family

A Tribute to Jeanne Tomlinson
by Mary Butchkavitz

(read by Mary at the California memorial service, June 12, 2000)

Jeanne's name was written
In the Book of Life,
And it was God's sovereign plan
That she be Howie's wife.

Together they did His will
And brought Him honor and praise,
Being a testimony of His goodness
Even in recent difficult days.

They dearly loved the Savior
And memorized His Word;
Hymns of old and Scripture
From them would be frequently heard.

Despite the physical infirmities
And circumstances that only got worse,
They lifted their hearts to heaven
And Jeanne got there first.

God had heard the many prayers;
To His throne they did ascend,
And He didn't disappoint--oh, no--
He answered them, dear friend.

Maybe it was not in the way
You and I could understand,
But that's OK, because He knew best
And we must trust His guiding hand.

We don't know how many came to Christ
Because of the events that took place;
Jeanne was a witness at the hospital,
Her church in New York, and at Grace.

Of course we miss the precious one,
But since death is not the end,
Our loss is only temporary
And we rejoice that we'll see her again.

Her life was lived to the fullest,
So let's celebrate that life today;
She was loving, sweet and gentle,
And touched our hearts in a special way.

No more pain or sorrow;
For her eternity's begun,
And I'm sure when she arrived,
Jesus smiled at Jeanne
And said: "Well done, good and faithful
servant! Well done!"

Jeanne Coppedge Tomlinson was one of the dearest friends I have ever had or anyone could have hoped for. There were so very many endearing character traits about her, she had a wonderful sense of humor with such a warm sweet smile. Her God given genuine sweet attitude about life in general made our times together very enjoyable. She was always concerned for others, for their interests and especially for their spiritual well-being. She had a heart for the lost and was so very faithful to the things of God. I always looked forward to our visits when she would come to California on vacation. However, it was those early days of growing and sharing our joys and our sorrow that I will always treasure. No matter how difficult a trial or troubling the situation that she had or, I shared with her, she never lost sight of Jesus. His power and providence were ever evidenced in her life no matter what the circumstances.

In every area of Jeanne's life 1 saw Jesus. She radiated the love and the character of Jesus Christ. In who she actually was, in how she walked, talked, dressed, and behaved. You can see it in her being, as well as in her doing. The presence of God was in her words, music, in her voice and in her heart. Her sweet spirit and gentleness with children and with the wiry brought joy to those who knew her best. She gave honor and respect to her parents at all times, as she loved them deeply. She treasured the times spent with all her family each time she would come to California, she truly loved each of you dearly.

I knew her as a dear friend, as a warm and compassionate sister in the Lord, as some one whom I could trust, someone who would be faithful to her word, and in prayer. I saw her as a loving daughter, a caring sister, a concerned aunt, a faithful devoted wife, and an ambassador for her King. God's purpose for His children is that they bring Him Honor and Glory, Jeanne achieved that purpose. She was a constant reminder of Jesus in her speech, her actions, her attitude, in her love for her family as well as for her friends and the many who's lives she so sweetly but powerfully touched.

She will be greatly missed but one day, some day soon we will all be together, perfected without the pain and sorrow, heartache and trouble of this world and what a glorious day that will be. I know there is much rejoicing in heaven at Jeanne's home going, her faithfulness as a child of God, a servant and a Godly women brings much honor and glory to her Savior's name.

In Loving Memory,
Linda L. Adrian

Dear Jeanne's Family:
It was a blessed privilege to be a part of the celebration of Jeanne's glorification on Monday, June 12. Thanks for all your efforts and for including some of her written prayers. I had the privilege in the early 1980s of unique fellowship with her concerning the rich blessing she received from her endeavor to understand the character and names of God during a difficult time in her life. It was clear to me that her faith and love in our God was a potent strength for her, which ministered to me as I was on a similar study to understand the ways of God.

Such depth and roots in the faith and love of God brings forth fruit shown in glorious hope. In fact, the similarities and differences between her road to glorification and Howard's (he is still on it) is a clear demonstration of the message of hope God gave to us through Jeanne. It is no accident that she should be glorified first; it reflects the wisdom of God in His message of hope to us all. I have never attended a memorial service for anyone where the message of "hope for those who need hope" came through to me so clear as was demonstrated in Jeanne's life and glorification. I consider it a special privilege to be a friend of the family over the years.

Your brother in the faith,
Ed Back

June, 2000 Monthly Article--Hope for Those Who Hurt
Dear Friends,

This month's article is being sent out with hopes you will take time to read it carefully. It tells a true story which I pray will be used by God to stimulate thought and action.

As is nearly always the case, a few of you may be receiving this for the first time. If that is the case for you, and you wish to keep receiving these monthly articles, let me know. I never keep folks on the list who express a desire to be removed, and I never clog your mailbox with junk mail or information which I cannot personally confirm.

Rick Townsend
Colleyville, Texas

P. S. There was no article sent out in either April or May. We do have a high school graduate who kept us fairly busy during those months. Congratulations, Andrew! =======================================================



I first met Jeanne Tomlinson electronically. I don't really consider that to be a great method of meeting new friends, it just happened that way. I was doing research on national education trends and was a subscriber to a nation-wide network of researchers who collaborated and shared findings. Jeanne was also a member of that network. She was different though. Like many on what was commonly known among subscribers as the "Education Loop," she was a Christian concerned about liberal and politically correct trends in education. Unlike most, though, she did something to transform her beliefs into activism.

She recognized that real change could not come without a spiritual renewal also taking place. So she began a "Prayer Loop" to solicit prayer requests among, but not limited to, members of the Education Loop.

I got to know Jeanne through her prayer updates, her sensitive and thoughtful responses and meditations, and her ability to cut to the chase and see problems for what they were.

I also discovered that her father, Dr. James Coppedge, had been instrumental early in my Christian life. He authored a book called EVOLUTION, POSSIBLE OR IMPOSSIBLE? This book really challenged my thinking on how the Earth was formed and how the Bible was validated, not contradicted, by science. Unlike other m embers of the Education Loop, it would not be long before I had a chance to meet Jeanne and her husband, Howard, in person.


Jeanne sent out the word a couple of years ago that she and Howard were going to be in the Dallas area. It seems a convention was scheduled for Eagle Forum, a conservative group founded by lawyer and Christian conservative Phyllis Schlaffly. Jeanne was active in Eagle Forum and planned to attend, but was open enough to share that funds were short and that she and Howard could use local lodging. Our family checked our schedule and extended an invitation. To our great delight, Howard and Jeanne accepted.

Meeting Howard and Jeanne in person was a real treat! I had heard about Howard's struggle with cancer over an extended period through the prayer loop updates. We heard more detail when we met in person, and also came to truly love and appreciate Howard and Jeanne as a special brother and sister in Christ. Howie, like Jeanne, has a deep relationship with the Lord. He speaks with a slight speech impediment, but with the total clarity of mind of one who is immersed in the relationship he shares with his Lord.In May of this year, Joni Eareckson Tada interviewed Howard and Jeanne on her radio program.[1]

This is what Jeanne said on that interview: "Howie and I have been married for 11 years, and out of those 11 years, we have been dealing with brain tumors for 9 years. Howie has had...a rare type of brain tumor, and he has had five brain surgeries, radiation, and chemo since 1993. We are praising God that he has no sign of any tumor since his fifth surgery in April of 1999. Also, there is no paralysis. The doctors had always warned that there would be great risk of paralysis, and he only has some weakness on his left side following these surgeries. Also, Howie has had the opportunity to memorize six books of the Bible, and his memory has been protected. ... He is able to get out and hike, and to play his trumpet, so there are many blessings that have come through these trials. God has also opened up doors for us to witness, and to share encouragement with those who are hurting." Among these opportunities to share the strength they have found in Christ was the chance to write down some of their lessons. They have done just that in a book recently completed called, HOPE FOR THOSE WHO HURT. Indeed, Dr. Coppedge's ministry of writing and encouraging has found its continuation in his daughter's pen.

In that same interview with Joni, Howard shared these thoughts on his own personal struggle with cancer:

"The Lord allows trials to strengthen and mature us, as James says in James 1:2-4:


Also, He allows trials so that we can comfort and encourage others, as Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 1:3-4,


The final comment on the "Joni and Friends" radio interview was from the commentator, who said, "The story of the Tomlinsons encourages us to realize that despite physical handicaps, despite the pressures and the problems of life, God does have an answer, and the Tomlinsons certainly give great evidence of that." Indeed, Howard and Jeanne's story is truly one of confidence in God's ultimate control in spite of appearances, and of overcoming whatever the world throws into the road ahead.


Those of us who know the Tomlinsons have become accustomed to praying for cancer issues. But in late March, we got an e-mail request for prayer which made us do a genuine double take. Jeanne had shared earlier in the year that she had had a persistent cough and migraine headaches which had been untouched by antibiotics. Finally, in March, an MRI revealed several tumors in her brain. Seeking a cause, a later set of diagnostic tests revealed the source of those tumors to be lung cancer which had metastasized and spread to her brain. The headaches thus explained, she immediately began chemotherapy and radiation treatments. She continued sending out e-mail updates but soon had to turn over her prayer loop administrator duties. Characteristically, her prayer requests centered on the fact that Howie had also begun declining physically. Jeanne was concerned for Howie's care and for his well-being in the event she was hospitalized, or worse. In April, shortly after the diagnosis, Jeanne wrote, "I feel weaker each day because of the radiation treatment and I'm coughing and feeling winded more than ever. I've also lost a great deal of my hair (have 2 wigs). I have 7 more daily treatments to the brain and about 19 more to the lung. Please pray for more energy and less coughing. Howie is feeling well and mentally alert, but he's still extremely weak on his left side. He needs help with walking and all his personal needs. Since I'm not strong enough to help him now, please pray that he'll get all the help he needs. At least he now has a wheelchair. We're so thankful for all the kind people who've been reaching out to us, providing meals, transportation to treatment, helping with shopping and finances, etc. We know God has allowed this trial for His purposes, and we pray that He will be glorified through it. It's not easy to suffer like this (the greatest suffering I've ever experienced), but if people come to the Lord and the faith of others are strengthened, it will be worth it in the long run.

Please pray that we remain faithful." "Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to them that love Him." (James 1:12). In late May, several downturns made further medical treatment for Jeanne pointless, as new cancer sites were being found and her strength was waning. The decision was made for Jeanne to be moved from the hospital to the nursing center which was providing care for Howie. On June 1, 2000, resting comfortably and holding Howie's hand, Jeanne slipped into the arms of her Savior.


Jeanne's passing was swift, occurring only 70 days after the date of her diagnosis. She will be remembered by those who knew her as a sensitive, thoughtful person who could always be expected to look at things from the eternal perspective. She is now living in Christ and we will indeed see her at the resurrection with all the joy we saw in this life still intact and her bright smile still firmly in place. The book she and Howard started is being completed by her brother, David Coppedge. Dave noted that one of Jeanne's main concerns when she became sick, other than Howie's well-being, was the completion of HOPE FOR THOSE WHO HURT. As Dave notes in a portion of the final chapters he is adding, "This book is tenfold more powerful now because of what happened between chapters 30 and 31." That is indeed accurate. Before Jeanne had herself faced the trials she wrote about as she and Howie shared them, the book could have been written off to an extent by the fact that the principle author was not herself being physically challenged. Her facing those very trials with an undaunted faith and a calm, peaceful serenity speaks volumes more than her book could have done without her facing eternity personally. Dave wrote in the chapter he is adding, "On the day of the diagnosis, [Jeanne] called me long distance and sounded her usual cheerful self, [and said] that she felt fine, and was trusting the Lord was working things according to His will. She said, 'we are in a desperate situation, but not in despair." After I came out to New York two weeks later, as their needs were starting to really get desperate, she told me that the lessons she had learned through the trials described in this book had prepared her. She was calm, peaceful, appreciative, and always wore a sweet smile right to the end. I wept with her at the hospital taking her to one of her daily radiation treatments, but she just smiled, and asked for prayer that she would be faithful and be able to finish this book."

Jeanne has finished the book. She lived the final chapter and asked the ultimate question knowing Jesus already has answered: "Death, where is your sting?" As for Howie, he really needs your prayers at this point. He has some of the paralysis on his left side which they both had rejoiced he had been spared earlier. He is in a nursing facility, and is under-standably in pain and loneliness. Please pray that he will continue in the strength and joy of His Lord and ours. His final chapter is not yet here, and he needs your prayers and love. HOPE FOR THOSE WHO HURT, the book Howard and Jeanne were writing, can be read free of charge by anyone with access to the Internet. It is available at the address, http://creationsafaris.com/HopeForHurt/ . I haven't read all of it yet. It is a book which, in light of Jeanne's "graduation" needs a careful read, not a speed-read. I would strongly encourage you to read it as well.

Our pastor likes to comment that every Christian should go to at least one funeral every year. If you haven't attended one yet this year, perhaps you can gain the same eternal perspective by reading Jeanne and Howard's book. I know I am getting it. That, after all, is the best legacy Jeanne could have left. She indeed "fought the good fight, ...finished the race, ...kept the faith." (2 Timothy 4:7) Can you imagine facing trials such as Jeanne and Howard have faced without this faith? Do you know anyone who is doing just that? Consider sharing the truth of the Good News of Jesus Christ with that person and take heart in the knowledge that He can sustain them through any challenge life has to offer. Jesus is waiting to share with them the eternal perspective with which he has ministered to the Tomlinsons, and as they say, "there is plenty more where that came from." There are a few key questions which Jeanne's death raises for each of us. How ready am I to "graduate" on short notice as Jeanne did? In the past few years, I have had several friends die untimely deaths in addition to Jeanne. Two men died, one of cancer after a lengthy battle, and one of an aneurysm with no notice. Between them, they left ten children fatherless. Are you ready to be called home on short notice? Jeanne had only 70 days after diagnosis, but even that might be a luxury compared to some who die in accidents or more sudden health issues such as heart attacks and strokes.

For folks who are not prepared to meet their maker, this is not a good prospect. Are you in that situation? Is there someone in your life in that situation? Are you praying for them and looking for opportunities to share what you know about the Good News? It is my prayer that this story will help you to prayerfully consider taking these steps without delay. I know it has done that for me.

[1] You can hear the audio from this program right here. (MP3 file, 3mb).

This article may be reproduced if it is reproduced in its entirety. The author may be reached at rbtownsd@flash.net .

I knew from the beginning that I had to write and share how much the life and death of Aunt Jeanne has been an inspiration to me.

Throughout the years, whenever I thought of Aunt Jeanne, I could hear her cheerful voice and see her smile as she spoke of what God was doing in her life and Howie's. She was always telling of the faithfulness of God. I never remember hearing her complain about the trials, ever. She never talked about Howie as being a burden, but always praised him in every little way that she could.

After her own diagnosis, when I would speak to her on the phone, she would, in a weak voice, tell of the faithfulness of God. How she knew He had a plan in all this and was confident in His wisdom.

When I flew out from California, I was able to be with her for the last week before her death. I walked into her hospital room and was shocked at what I saw. She had gone from being a strong healthy woman, to something this weak in such a short amount of time. But Jeanne did not let this bother her spirit at all. Each time that I would walk in to see her, she would always smile and ask, in a weak voice, how my day had gone and if I had fun. Even in her bed, she would be giving counsel, encouragement, and advice to her friends. What a selfless person. Never once did I see her waver. God gave her strength, and she allowed Him to show Himself through her.

When she started coughing, a few hours before her death, she said, "I am so glad Christi is not here to see this." My little sister had flown back home to California the day before. She was not thinking of herself, but others. Her last words to me were "I love you. Bye, Bye," which she said with a smile. We did not know that this would be our last time to see her, but I think she knew.

I have been richly blessed by her husband Howie's testimony through his trials, but Jeanne's strength and selfless spirit will always be remembered in my heart. Thank you Aunt Jeanne for allowing God to use you.

Michelle Rose (Jeanne's niece)

14 July 2000
Dear Mr. & Mrs. Coppedge,
Our love and sympathies go out to you on your loss of your beautiful daughter. May God comfort you during this time. The Lord is a great Comforter.

It was a privilege to meet and be around Jeanne the few times I saw her. She had such a gentle spirit and gracious giving nature. Praise the Lord for His creation. She seemed so sensitive to others and responsive to our needs always.

Her concern for the children and desire to combat the evil in this dark world were heroic.

I look forward to being able to read her book and to passing it on to other very sick people and environmentally ill persons, like myself. Praise the Lord for what He did in her short life.

It was a very special treat to see you on the 4th, Mrs. C. I hope you will both consider a visit soon out here by our Lord's beautiful ocean. Come when you're able, please.

Love to you,
Alice & John Carpenter, Jonathan, Rebecca

P.S. Thanking God always for you and your family--all that you poured into our family over the last 12 years since we started homeschooling. Thank you!

Dear Dave,
"Sharing your sorrow and praying God will comfort you."

Please share with your parents our high regard for Jeanne. When she was with us in the Career Dept. at Grace, I had some special times of sharing time with her. One of my dearest memories of her, was her sincere use of her prayer journal. May the Lord comfort you all.

It is difficult to be left behind by one you love so dearly. With deep sympathy for your loss, however brief it is, knowing we will meet again soon.

In His love,
Bob and Billie Wilson