Moving from 2016 to 2017 has been a very difficult time for all of us who love Laura so much.
Many people in the media have commented that they couldn’t wait to see the end of 2016 as so many high profile celebrities passed away during the year.
Now that 2016 has gone, however, it has been really difficult to get our thoughts around the notion that the year when we laughed, chatted, celebrated and generally just loved being with Laura has gone. We also have to face Laura’s birthday on 9 January.
Our plan to get through January is to make it a month of celebration of Laura’s incredible life and at the same time use it to raise awareness of Sarcoma and to raise funds for research. This was Laura’s goal and we will continue her plans in her memory.
Laura was a very kind, talented and intelligent young woman. She made her family nothing but proud of everything she did and the way she lived her life every single day. She achieved so much in such a short time. No matter what was thrown at Laura she faced it head on and with sheer determination.
Not many of us have, or ever will, meet anyone with so much strength. She was determined not to let her diagnosis and treatment stop her from doing anything. She never deferred her university studies and completed her Masters degree while in treatment. Some of her most rewarding moments were spent working as an architect, which was her plan from the time she did work experience in an architecture firm in Year 10, and nothing was going to stop her. At Laura’s memorial service there was a video clip of her dancing at the end of a long day at work day in August 2016 with her close friend and work colleague, Felix. She was her usual joyous self and was making the most of every moment and every opportunity that came her way.
Laura was always there for everybody else no matter what she was going through. Her friends have commented that she was always there for them – giving genuine advice and criticism about their life choices when deserved! Even as a young child, Laura respected and looked after people and made them feel wanted and safe. She continued doing that for people all her life. She looked after her family and friends and she made each and every one of us better people for having known her. Her effect on people will stay with all who had the privilege of knowing her for the whole of their lives.
If you'd like to host a fundraiser in honour of Laura's birthday in January, we suggest incorporating the colour yellow in some way, whether it be through clothing, decorations or food.
Laura's favourite method of fundraising was through morning teas, afternoon teas or picnics - a place to informally gather friends and family, share treats and cups of tea, all while raising awareness and money for the ASSG.
The Australasian Sarcoma Study Group will send donation envelopes to anyone who wishes to hold a fundraiser - you can find contact details here.