A Death in the Church Family


Updated at the bottom.

Also, see Sue’s blog (wolfpacwife14 ). They lost a grandbaby today.


We got a call this morning about 7:00, to inform us of a death in our church family. Elizabeth died sometime during the night and her mother found her in the bathroom sometime before 5:00 this morning.

Elizabeth was 31, and had had a rough time for the last several years. She had encephalitis several years back and nearly died. When she did pull through, she had brain damage which resulted in multiple seizures every day. She was on tons of medication, but they could not control the seizures. She tried a special diet, but she still had them. Finally, she had a vagus nerve stimulator implanted. It helped sometimes, but not always. It was very common for her to have seizures during church. She was just quietly taken care of during the seizure. Many times people not sitting near her, never knew anything had happened.

Elizabeth’s father, Dave, is our youth and music minister, and her adopted brother, Andy, is our pianist. Her other adopted brother, Jeremy, was the ringbearer in Brandon and Rachael’s wedding. You can go back to my New Year’s Day post to see pictures of the boys.

Her step-mother, Chris, told me that they believe Elizabeth’s airway became constricted when she fell this morning. She was wedged between the tub and toilet. She was probably never aware of what happened.

Elizabeth will be cremated. We will have a viewing and visitation Monday night, and a memorial service Tuesday at 10:30 at the church. We are preparing a dinner for everyone after the service.

This morning was our regular monthly church workday, so we were able to visit with each other and make the plans for the dinner. Dave, Andy and Jeremy came to the church for a while.

When I saw Jeremy in the parking lot, I put my arm around him and hugged him. I said, “Beth is worried about you. Do you want to go see her?” He didn’t say anything…just stared at me and shook his head yes. I told him she was in the kitchen and he took off running to find her.

Our pastor took the boys to the gun show to give them something to do. Later Andy rode his bike back down to the church to visit with Beth again. She seems to be able to comfort both of them.

At Christmas, Elizabeth liked to bring chocolate kisses to church. She put them in a big fishbowl, for everyone to take one (or two ). As a tribute to Elizabeth, we decided to put that bowl, full of chocolate kisses, on the table in the church, where Elizabeth liked to put them. She wrote a little note to go with them. Bethany is going to mat and frame the note to display at the service, and then give it to her dad. So that’s why we have kisses at the top of the post.

This is such a shock. Nobody expects a young person to just die like that. But she’s in a much better place. She won’t have anymore seizures and no more aches and pains. She had a problem with a shoulder that kept dislocating. That won’t happen anymore.

She’s been promoted. Please pray for her family.

Elizabeth Stone

Elizabeth Stone

Update 8:15 p.m….Bethany got the project finished. Elizabeth had written a note about special friends on a post card that said Thank You. So Beth framed the post card in a floating glass frame so that both sides can be seen. She added some scrapbooking details to it. Then she wrote an explanation of why we are keeping the bowl filled with kisses, as a tribute to Elizabeth. Both made me cry.

She is going to take a picture of the framed card and the explanation and post them on her blog. When she gets that done, I will post a link.

The picture above is actually from a picture taken of the ladies working in the kitchen during Vacation Bible School. Elizabeth liked to help in VBS, but she couldn’t do much. So we let her help make snowcones. She felt really needed that way.



31 thoughts on “A Death in the Church Family

  1. Praying with you now.Your caring and attention to those sweet little details reveals the love and unity you have one with another… that love and unity will help the family heal. They are so blessed to have you!

  2. :yes:Praying for you all at this time of sorrow . . . yet with the hope that we have as God’s children. I know that Bethany is being used of God in the lives of Andy and Jeremy with the sensitive spirit with which God has blessed her. That is a very special, precious detail ~ the kisses and the framed note. :love: Carolyn:heartbeat:

  3. Oh honey, that is so tragic,  it is awesome how ya’ll are hanging together for the family and keeping her memory alive!   Such a great tribute to those who are walking Heaven if you ask me,  keep the great things they did alive and well.  I’ll pass on to my gang to pray for the family!

  4. She´s sitting at the feet of Jesus!  She´s having a wonderful time right now!:sunny:  Just stopping by.  “SingingMom” attracted my attention.  I love singing and playing the piano.  I also play accordion.  We are missionaries to Lima, Peru, South America.  I have 4 children, a precious daughter-in-law and an awesome 2 year old grandbaby.  Serving as missionaries with my husband, Rodney and our youngest Ryan.  I hope you had  a wonderful day.  Rebekah

  5. I am so sorry….especially for those left behind and how young she was. Seizures are so hard on the body. Every once in a while Mark will have one and it is awful. If she was having them daily I am sure she is glad to be rid of them and in the arms of her Father where she will never again have a seizure or pain.
    Looking at her picture she looked like such a vibrant young lady. I teared up with the kisses story… 
    May God comfort you and with that comfort give you the ability to comfort others….
    God Bless….

  6. I didnt know you have epilepsy… Yes Mark takes Dilantin too…he will have a seizure for sure if he forgets to take his. He forgot one time while we were on our Alaskan cruise…oh that was so awful…it is hard to watch…when you cant do anything for them…fortunately Mark has always been in bed when they happen…
    One day we will all be able to throw away all our Rolaids, anti seizure, heart, cholesterol, and all the other things that happen to our bodies!   
    God bless you!

  7. That will be wonderful, Kerri. I only have seizures in my sleep (but I don’t have them very often – maybe once or twice a year), so I’ve always been in bed when it happened, too.

  8. :(So sorry for your loss… I know too well how this feels when someone dies unexpectantly from when my friend from church died last month.  It’s a shock and just doesn’t seem real. 
    Bless all of you during this time and I will be praying for you all!

  9. Cindy, it seems today has been a loss for many.  Thank you for your prayers during this time in our lives.  I will be thinking of everyone and praying for God’s strength to get everyone through the difficult days ahead.  Love, Sue

  10. Oh, I am so saddened by this loss…And like you, I am rejoicing that she is with our beloved Savior.  Bethany is such a special young lady…I am praying for that special man God has picked out for her…:yes:And I am enjoying getting to know her a little better through xanga! 🙂 What a precious family you have!  With muchliest love and prayers—Paula:heartbeat:

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