[bksvol-discuss] Sorrowful tidings of Mayrie ReNae

  • From: "Estelnalissi" <airadil@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 1 Dec 2012 22:57:55 -0500

Dear Booksharian Friends,

On the last morning of November Mayrie Renae peacefully died in her sleep. She 
wasn’t finished living and loving and being a dynamic force for good in 
Bookshare, but she was spared increasing suffering as her illness worsened. I 
finally brought myself to write to you because I think it is better for you to 
hear this from a friend.

I am passing this sad news along today so that we may react as caring friends 
and volunteers this weekend expressing our grief and comforting one another 
unencumbered by list rules and guidelines for if there is ever a time when our 
community feelings are more important than the business at hand, it is now.

In my case Mayrie was a cherished friend and usually, though not always, a 
like-minded volunteer. 

She was an impeccable proofreader and scanner. Initially she set out to make 
many more books available to young readers. Eagerly she incorporated tips she 
gathered from this list and was soon developing new ones of her own. She 
recruited the help of volunteers who, like herself, were committed to 
dependability and accuracy. Her prodigious output proved to volunteers and to 
the Benetech staff that blind Booksharians could produce accurate work at 
speed. In fact, she was hired as a professional proofreader and expanded her 
skills to include list advisor and technique developer while at the same time 
continuing to scan books for long-time friends and newcomers. 

Mayrie set a high example of work ethic for volunteers and staff alike. In 
answering questions on and off list she was patient. Without neglecting the 
wishes of her friends, she found time to train and channel scans to beginning 
volunteers. She adjusted to change gracefully. When many of our books were 
replaced by PQ books, she celebrated the overall gain to readers though her 
entire Sammy Keyes series was replaced along with many other of her 
submissions. Mayrie respected confidences and never gossiped or fostered any 
kind of hard feelings. If Mayrie had a fault it was believing that anyone, paid 
or unpaid, could work with her tireless dedication. 

Please know I’m writing as Mayrie’s grieving friend and not officially. Mayrie 
and I fed each other’s passion for books and Bookshare. By example she showed 
me how to keep the goal of helping develop a huge accessible library before any 
frustration or hurt feelings. Negativity must never obscure pursuit of the 
greater good Bookshare accomplishes.

I want to wind down on a more personal note. I believe Mayrie wouldn’t mind me 
sharing a few facets of her sparkling personality.
Mayrie loved chocolate and peanut butter, especially peanut butter pie. She was 
always in search of a recipe for putting more peanut butter in cookies while 
maintaining good texture and improving flavor.
Mayrie loved books where the woman got her man as well as mysteries and well 
written books for teens and middle-schoolers.
She loved coffee.
She was far more likely to cry tears of compassion than of self pity.
She loved teamwork in the kitchen with John.
She let the child in her enjoy children’s music and build with Legos.
Keeping promises was important to Mayrie.
Nascar on the radio was fun.
Exercise wasn’t fun.
There was nothing more satisfying than contributing a complete series of books 
to Bookshare.
The artist in her chose colorful skirts and played guitar.
Mayrie’s winters could be dreary and her summers too hot.
She was gleeful when she found ways to work around any roadblocks posed by her 
blindness.
Potatoes with the skins on roasted with butter and Lipton’s dry onion soup on 
top were one of her favorite side dishes.
She was a fan of folk and country music.
No librarian could have kept the prodigious number of print books she hoped yet 
to scan better organized.

Mayrie was such an intelligent, vibrant person. But think, she was but one of 
many of Bookshare’s fascinating, vibrant volunteers, staff and members. With 
each person lost and gained Bookshare’s history and future grows richer.

Mayrie left us the link to a song to help us cope with her passing. 

http://hkc.im/1ij

Always with love,

Lissi

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