You know you are loved when 40 people from near and far come to a BBQ in your honor! In April of 2017, doctors told Judy she has stage three-lung cancer and has less than six months to live.
Judy has lived in many different places throughout her life; born in Merryville, Missouri, raised in Iowa, spent 20 of her adult years and raising her children in Omaha and now has settled in Belton, Missouri with her husband, Ken, for the last 27 years. But, Omaha will always be her home.
Judy has three children; Rhonda from Omaha, Michelle from Scribner and Michael from Belton. She has 9 grandkids and 12 great grandkids. Judy is a very proud mother. She will tell you, her greatest accomplishment is raising her kids and being proud of all they have achieved in their life. Being a single mom, raising three children she did not have a lot of extra money for vacations and activities. She worked full-time as a Lab Manager at U.S. Optical and in fact was the first woman lab manager in the United States. Judy worked hard and put everything she made toward taking care of her family.
Judy has many fond memories from raising her kids. They spent time together at home playing board games, planting a garden and watching movies with popcorn. Judy laughs when she tells you her kids would often play tricks on her, wrapping the toilet seat in saran wrap or hanging her clothes on the front lawn. The biggest treat for her and the kids was walking a mile to an ice cream shop on Q St once a month to get a sweet treat with the money they saved. Judy says, “We did what we could with what we had.”
Judy’s Dream was to spend one last day with ALL her friends and family. Dreamweaver Foundation was able to help make this possible by providing resources to help Rhonda plan a backyard BBQ. On a rainy Saturday morning, during Memorial Day weekend, Rhonda and her children prepared lunch for Judy’s friends, family, neighbors and co-workers; some that she hasn’t seen in years! By the afternoon when everyone was arriving, the sun was shining. 40 people from Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri and even Texas enjoyed visiting with Judy.
Judy and Rhonda said,” We cannot thank you enough. It was fantastic what you did for us.” We want to thank Rhonda for nominating her mother and organizing the picnic.