— Jenny Neill

In Remembrance of Little Spark: #663399Becca

I’ve not written about how I, like hundreds or maybe thousands of others, have hung on every word Eric Meyer has written about his second daughter since last August. Short of missives that say “I hear you” or “I wish I could take your anguish away,” what could I add? Eric’s always been someone who writes with confidence, clarity, and eloquence. Today, I can say something, do something.

Who is Eric Meyer? To me, he is one of those rare friends met in childhood and left behind for a time before meeting again as adults. Though it was years before our professional networks brought us together again, he was in many ways the same Eric I remembered from “smart kids’ camp” years ago. Smart, funny, caring. He was still one of those special people who manages to be present and real, who accepts you for who you are.

During the years we’d lost touch, he had become an expert on cascading style sheets and a dedicated advocate for standards-based web development. We see each other now about once every year or so as his work with An Event Apart brings him to my chosen home town or I return to his chosen town to visit with my family.

Since last August, his blog has become required reading for me. He has written with heartbreaking openness about what he and his family have gone through while trying to save Rebecca from cancer. Becca, or Little Spark as Eric called her, was a feisty girl who was with the world for only six years. Her favorite color was purple.

Today, her family lays her to rest. And I, like hundreds or maybe thousands of others, wear her favorite color purple to honor her memory. I lend my virtual voice the chorus of others asking you to consider making a charitable donation Rebecca’s name to the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House or the St. Baldrick’s Foundation Hero Fund.