October Rainbow Bridge

Timmy

We adopted Timmy from MWCR in 2008. I had volunteered to foster him for the group and totally failed my foster! He was with us for 11 years – definitely not long enough. Here’s a picture of him in 2010. Timmy passed away yesterday (Sept. 30)  – just old age. What a beautiful, sweet boy! I’m SO sad and the house is empty without him. – Cara

 

Carmel

 

 

 

 

My precious, sweet, little 12-year-old Carmel has passed away. Carmel had pneumonia when she joined my household. She also coughed, choked, and gagged when eating, problems we attributed to her pneumonia and a side effect of nausea from the antibiotics. When the pneumonia cleared and she finished the antibiotics, the problems continued and she was diagnosed with dysphagia, a swallowing disorder. Over time, the dysphagia got worse until she could no longer eat or even drink water without gagging and foaming at the mouth. Her weight had dropped to 34 pounds and her veterinarian and I decided the kindest thing to do was to let her go.

Carmel was the gentlest dog I’ve ever had. She loved everyone – people and animals. My collie mix, Jake, and my cats, Angel and Duncan, thought Carmel was wonderful as did everyone in the neighborhood. Carmel loved the neighbor’s two cats who visited and would bark excitedly when she saw them on the front porch. Carmel was only with me for three months, but she became a huge part of my life. Miss you dearly, my sweet precious little girl. – Terry

Mia

Mia joined us on Memorial Day Weekend 2016. Mia ended her journey with us today, Tuesday, October 22. She came to us as a special needs permanent foster, but soon simply was another member of our vineyard pack. Mia joined a bonded pair of collie brothers. Several months later, a Golden Retriever sister joined the pack. Boisterous and sometimes bossy, Mia loved to be in the middle of any event. She loved to bark every time a walk was offered and led the way down the ramp, watching carefully for every treat during the ramble. Mia’s closest partner was the barn cat, who would wait outside the door and join the pack on the walk, stepping in front of Mia, deliberately forcing her to change direction or stop. When she stopped the cat would rub against her, claiming her as his friend. As Mia slowed in the last year, she would sit in the shade of the porch and her feline friend would slide onto her front legs, directly under her chin. Together they watched the world pass by. Mia was always the first of the pack to welcome visitors. She always offered a vocal and enthusiastic greeting, pushing her way through the pack until she received the attention she was sure she deserved. After a few minutes, she would settle quietly often at the feet of the guest. It’s hard to know if Mia loved her treats or walks more. As she slowed over the last months, Mia supervised the walks from the front walk in the company of her favorite cat, but she never missed a treat. After a couple of years, she finally began to understand the command: “gentle” when given a treat. Boisterous, bossy, friendly, inquisitive, courageous, enduring, unique, and loyal are some of the words to describe Mia, our special pack and family member. She is missed. We thank MWCR for their willingness to entrust Mia to our care and for their support in attending to Mia’s veterinary care and dietary needs. Mia was a special Collie, a gift to all who knew her. We celebrate her time with us and are thankful for the way she made our lives better and richer. – Mary & Jeff Aderman

September Rainbow Bridge

Brogan

Handsome smoothie Brogan left us yesterday September 9th, after a brief illness. Adopted in 2011, he was a wonderful ambassador for MWCR at many events. From his family: RIP Brogan. Enjoy your romps over the bridge. And please keep watch over us. You were the best dog ever!!!!💞😘 We miss you so very much! 07/04/10 – 09/09-19

Also, Honey, 14.5 years old, passed away in February, after having vestibular problems; Hunter died August 30.

August Rainbow Bridge

Sophie

Sophie 5/29/2007 to 8/11/2019 

All collies are beautiful.  I will miss my sweet Sophie who was so loyal, never asking for anything but love and understanding of who she was – a truly gentle sweet beautiful collie girl. I adopted her at age four and she was my sweetie for eight years. I chose her because she was first of all, so pretty, and second of all she had a curiosity about her. I would imagine that it was a big adjustment for her to move from the country on a small farm where her foster Mom was to a suburb. I never hurried her to mingle in the hustle and bustle of big crowds or events because I found out she preferred her quiet times in her yard or at the local quiet doggie park.

Sophie

Sophie loved her yard and never minded the snow or cold either. She actually liked the cold and didn’t seem phased by the very cold. She charted her territory and was contented to walk it each day if it wasn’t raining. She liked the car rides because she usually knew we were going to the park, loved children and some people, but barked at others. She never failed to alert us when someone that didn’t belong in the neighborhood normally was nearby. She grew to like and play with her toys. She could find the smallest little things in the yard like little toys the kids would drop through the fence. Sometimes it was little tomatoes from the garden. She would play with them. She loved small dogs or puppies, feared the big dogs, but would hang with other dogs of the same temperament and size. People at the dog park sometimes called her Princess because she would sit back and watch all the other dogs and action, but if they got too rowdy she would bark at them as if she was telling them to cut it out. Sophie was a smoothie. Some people who weren’t familiar with the breed often thought that I trimmed her fur that way. Like other collies she was often a couch potato. Ultimately she had one sofa that became hers in the TV room, and don’t you dare sit on her sofa when she was there. She would pace around and around if you were sitting on it and give you the collie eye look until you got off. We would laugh knowing that she would do it each time. Once she had her sofa, she was happy. I loved her dearly. Eight years went too fast. The last year became the hardest as she got older and was diabetic. I managed it for at least two years.  May 29th was her birthday and she was 12. I hold the memories near and she will always be my sweetheart. – Julie Sell

Buddy

Yesterday (August 15), was a very sad day for us. Buddy, our first foster and the first collie we adopted went to the rainbow bridge.

We are not sure how old Buddy was but thanks to MWCR, he had a good long happy life with us. Buddy came into MWCR when he was about five years old. He had been badly abused and the owner tried to put him down but the vet said no and called MWCR.
Veronica and I fostered him, fell in love and instantly adopted him. Buddy had been abused so bad that he spent the first couple of months hiding behind the couch. He slowly came out of his shell and lived a very happy and good life. He loved the other fosters, spending time in the yard, going to the park and collie frolics, and sleeping in bed with us.
Thank you MWCR for helping make Buddy part of our life. – Monty and Veronica

Bandit

Sadly, 7-year-old Bandit, adopted just two months ago, had to be helped over the Rainbow Bridge yesterday (August 14). He was originally saved from a very neglectful situation but because he wasn’t getting along with one of the family’s other dogs, they surrendered him to a local shelter, who contacted MWCR to bring him into our rescue. We reached out to a waiting adopter about taking him as a foster dog but they knew he needed them and adopted him as soon as he arrived.
Over the past weekend Bandit began to have devastating and severe seizure/neurological issues. They tried for several days to bring him out of it but none of the treatments their vet tried were helping. He was getting worse each day and in constant distress, so the decision was made to end his suffering. As we all know, this is the worst part of sharing our lives with our pets but unfortunately, also one of the responsibilities we have as the people entrusted with their care.
Sometimes we wonder if the pain is worth it but Bandit’s mom’s words help us put things in perspective: I want to assure you if we would have known beforehand what he would have to go through, we would adopt him again with no hesitation, he gave us that much joy.  He was a gift.  And I will always remember the furry curl of a collie beside me on the den couch.  I swear he was smiling.
Loss is so unfair when it happens to those you love.  But we will recover in time.
Thank you for helping to give us the opportunity to have had him a part of our lives.  He was a beautiful companion.

Sadie Mae

Our Sadie Mae crossed over the Rainbow Bridge on Tuesday, May 28, 2019. It was a peaceful passing with loving arms around her and sweet whispers in her ears. Our memories of the past six years are much more than we can share today and she was so much more. Sadie came to us in the fall of 2013, after being surrendered by a woman who had found her as a stray. Sadie (aka: Lady) , was a perfectly mannered, gentle, sweet girl who must have been very loved before she came to us. We are sure it was a difficult decision to let her go and we have been very thankful of her previous fur-Mom’s generous heart.

Sadie was always giving and trusting. She loved spending time on the front screened porch giving marching orders to squirrels or offering a surprise vocal “attack” as she announced a bike rider or jogger. She had a keen sense of danger. She woke me one night when a floor stand’s motor seized-up, the smell of hot plastic and the heat from the unit got her attention and then my action before it ignited. Her protective side was sooo tender . . . If one of her stuffies squeaked, as it was stepped on in error by one of us, she would immediately retrieve it and whimper while she carried it around the house until she laid it to rest in a safe location. Never a toy was destroyed: as she would “floss” her teeth in the material gently. She was lovingly spoiled. She would sit ever so patiently for a few Culver’s french fries . . . her favorite treat. We believe she felt safe, respected, and loved.

Sadie’s mobility continued to decline over the last four months and additional health issues were a challenge. Dr. Amber from Lodi Veterinary Care supported Sadie, and us, through her last eight weeks. She was able to offer Sadie improved mobility and even a solid rally in the week before she passed . . . doing things she hadn’t done in many months. We will be forever grateful for Dr. Amber’s caring manner and the treatment modalities she provided to improve Sadie’s last few months.

Our home is definitely feeling the loss of our sweet beautiful girl, but our memories of so many special moments keep her alive in our hearts. Forever our Sadie Mae❣️ – xoxo Janelle & Leah

Maesie and Ollie

It was with great sadness that I sent Maesie (DOB-5-20-03), adopted May of 2010 and Ollie (DOB-6-23-08), adopted July of 2014 to the Rainbow Bridge together on 8-19-19. Maesie at 16+ has had several issues over the last few months and over the prior week had refused to eat and eventually refused to drink anything except water. Ollie has had many health issues from day 1. The one that caused him the most problem was spinal arthritis in all of his feet. We had been doing acupuncture and laser treatments for a couple of years and it was steadily progressing. His walks were short, and getting shorter because his hind legs would give out and lifting a 95# guy was not impossible but becoming a struggle – not only outside but also inside. I had throw rugs all over but it seemed he would find himself in an area w/o one and struggling to get up. Maesie had also gotten to that point after not eating and losing weight but she insisted on a walk most days until the very end.

They were great buddies and Ollie was so solicitous of her. He would lick her ears and she would lean her head into him. I had Maesie for 4 years before Ollie came along. I’ll never forget him getting her to play and even doing a play bow and they chased each other around our backyard. She had never done that before so no question – Ollie was staying. He was a big teddy bear and Maesie was the greeter. When they were younger and we went to the dog parks, I would have to keep a leash on her for a while because she wouldn’t leave the gate area. Someone once suggested that I get her a job at Walmart. Prior to Ollie, Maesie and I traveled with a friend and her dog in her RV around Lake Michigan and we also spent five days at Devil’s Lake. We walked many miles together and I really miss her. Maesie, Ollie and I and another friend spent a week in Door County, walking paths and visiting parks. In the winter when the snow and ice weren’t forgiving with their age – Ollie would pick out a toy and I would roll it down our hallway and they would both chase it. It was so funny to watch because whichever one came back with the toy – I would yell “yay Maesie” or “yay Ollie” and which ever one had it actually had a swagger to their gait as they brought it back to me. They made me laugh.

BUT – time marches on and here I am with many great memories of both of them and still teary and waking up at night about every two hrs because that’s the way it’s been for quite some time. I always hoped their need to go out would be coordinated but seldom did. So I was up in two hours and then again about an hour later 3-4 times a night. But I know my sleep patterns will self correct given time but I still wake up listening for nails clicking on the floor to let me know they need to go out and it isn’t happening. We all grieve – how can one not? They are such a huge part of our lives that it would be callous not to. Anyone with a heart knows and feels that. Right now my house feels horribly empty. My living room as my vet saw it when he came for the house call said it looked like a hospice center – which it kind of was. Beds – either raised or comfort foam so they had a choice and fans. My floors are a mess but they will get cleaned. All in due time. After everything is caught up – I will be looking to foster/adopt again.

In the meantime, I want to pass on two quotes that I found recently. The first is by Rumi; “Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes. Because for those who love with heart and soul there is no such thing as separation.”

The other is by Ram Dass: “We are all just walking each other home.”

Thank you for listening and sharing and I know you have all been here in this moment in time with someone dearly loved.

Sweet Hyland went to the Rainbow Bridge in June. She was adopted in 2012.

Guiness

When I adopted Guinness (known as Jazz with MWCR), I had no idea that he was an angel on earth. I was just a few months removed from the end of a long-term relationship and feeling lost and directionless in life. I had always had a soft spot for collies, so I applied to adopt through MWCR. The rescue thought Jazz might be a good fit, and something about him told me I should drive the 3+ hours to meet him his foster home in Illinois. I knew right away this was the one. I picked him up later that week on a dangerously cold February night, and I remember glancing back at him on my truck’s back seat and seeing a questioning look on his face. He wasn’t sure about our new arrangement. Later that night, I finally pulled into my driveway and walked him into the house. He stood and looked around the living room, surveying his new home, still clearly unsure about the night’s events. An hour later, he was curled up across my legs on my couch, calm and content.

Guinness was my best friend and my rock for more than 12 years. I never had a bad day at work because he was there to greet me every night when I got home. He was my shadow in everything I did. He was as close to a perfect dog as I think can possibly exist. He was gentle. He was intelligent. He was sensitive. He was loving. I always thought he was an “only-dog dog”, because he’d spend more time walking up to people for his favorite butt rubs at the dog park than he did playing with other dogs. But then I heard about another dog needing a home in late 2015 (when Guinness was nearly 11 years old), I brought him to meet the new dog. Guinness was wonderful with him. From that day forward, Guinness accepted Macree into his home and his life. There was never a growl exchanged between them. Guinness knew he wasn’t being replaced. That would be impossible.

When Guinness began to get sick in August of 2018, I knew the twilight was coming. His back legs were giving him trouble, so I got a body harness that would allow me to carry him up and down the stairs everyday and to help him up when it was icy last winter. He took a turn for the worse in late February of this year and another one a week later. I rushed him to the emergency vet, who told me that he had aspiration pneumonia and, because of his laryngeal paralysis, would be susceptible to another bout any time he drank water. She also said that the humidity of a Wisconsin summer would make him more and more uncomfortable. She was honest with me that there would be many more bad days than good days ahead for him. I had been trying for months to prepare myself, but it still hits like a ton of bricks when you have to make good on your promise to say goodbye when it’s time. I tried to be composed for him, to say goodbye with the grace and dignity that he deserved, but I was a mess. The moment the vet said she couldn’t hear his heartbeat anymore will live with me forever.

Despite all of that sadness, I would choose him again and again and again, knowing the ending. He gave me so much love when I needed it most, and never asked anything in return. Someone said to me, “If your love could keep Guinness alive, he would live forever”. He does, in my heart and now on my arm. I thank MWCR for giving me the opportunity to adopt Guinness many years ago. He was the best boy.

 

July Rainbow Bridge

Ilsa

We said goodbye to our sweet Ilsa yesterday (July 2). She was our first foster in 2010. We knew she was ours the second she walked through the door. She was the sweetest, most gentle dog we’ve ever known. She happily welcomed 17 more foster pups into our home. We’ll miss everything about her — the chirpy bark, lush wooly fur, serene nature, slow pace and loyal affection.

Cameron

With sadness, we said good bye to our sweet girl Cameron. She was a part of our lives for the past 11 years. We included her in as many things as we could. Boating, camping, vacationing, lots of walks, visiting Grandma and Grandpa’s. She had many doggie friends in our neighborhood. We would walk around the block and she would literally stop across the street from one of her friends, Sasha, and look at me, then their house and then back to me asking if it was ok to go visit. When I gave the ok, she ran across the street. She frequently went up to John McKenna’s porch and wanted me to come up and knock on the door, which we did often. She would always want to be in the middle of us when we danced. She loved children and was the best dog our family could ever ask for. Kev gave her daily rub downs and it melted my heart watching him love her❤️. She kept him company when he was up late, asking for a snack or attention or to play. She sat on his foot when storms were on the way. She was such a blessing to our family. Our hearts are heavy. Rest now sweetie. No more pain. We ❤️ you with all our heats. I pray I will see you in heaven some day. Mom, Dad and Mike, please watch over her. Missing you❤️. We love you❤️❤️❤️

June Rainbow Bridge

Submitted by the ones who miss them

Great sadness accompanies this letter, yet I need to tell you about a Great collie adopted nearly ten years ago.

Pixly

July 19, 2009 we adopted Pixly, who came all the way from Iowa to our home in northern Illinois. The amazing foster mom from MWCR drove over two hours to a 1/2-way point to make the introduction to us and our other collie, Rosebud. She knew very well that we were likely to complete the adoption right there, having been approved by local representatives of Collie Rescue. He bonded immediately with Rosebud and with us, and the journey home began. Pixly was unwilling to remain in the ‘way back’ part of the wagon, oh no: over the seat, next to the kids, head on the armrest and giving directions. That was our first day. What a smart boy. What a sweet boy.

Every day was full of the love and joy that is unique to collies: loud, enthusiastic announcements when anyone would return home, boisterous play followed by intense sleep, respectful walking with the older Rosebud. Pixly made me into his very own human, and made sure everyone knew it. When Rosebud passed, at nearly 14 years of age, we truly thought that we would be a one-dog family. That changed when we met Mavis, a smooth tri-color, through Collie Rescue of Greater Illinois. Pixly recognized, as we did, that Mavis was a work in progress, a real rescue. He helped bring her out of her shell, learn to love, taught her how to play, even. What a smart, sweet boy.

Just as in the song “The Circle Game”, the seasons turned so quickly, with kids going to college and graduate school, and Pixly and Mavis being there as an anchor for them to return to. Pixly maintained a terrific sense of humor, always giving us reasons to laugh, even as his mobility became challenged. Suddenly, we’re looking at a 13+ year-old collie with left leg pain and lost function. Last night he was diagnosed with an inoperable tumor, and to relieve his suffering we had no good choice other than to ask the vet to give him a graceful exit. His final breath was in my arms as I wished him Godspeed and great success in Heaven.

Ironically, the last 24 hours have been hell for us: the suddenness of his decline, the self-doubt, the bargaining and finally the acceptance that his work on this earth was complete. Such a sweet boy.

We are forever grateful to MWCR for making the introduction of Pixly to us. He was our first adoption, and we will definitely adopt another in due time. I will always love him, and miss terribly the sight and sound of our love puppy. Thank you for the tireless work that you do, to bring these deserving dogs into the right forever home!

Sparky

We lost our beloved Sparky last night. He was the best dog. Sweet, loving, smart, gentle. Everything and more that a collie should be. Our hearts are broken but I want to share Sparky’s story – at least the last seven years since we adopted him.

It was pure chance that in early summer 2012 I came across his photo on an adoption website. Without Scott’s knowledge, I reached out about adopting him. A wonderful hound rescuer, Roberta R. Beach (Bobbie Beach), had welcomed him in to her hound pack, Silverwalk Fosters. He was four years old, intact and being from the Missouri bootheel area, heart worm positive.

Bobbi was working behind the scenes to get him into the amazing Minnesota Wisconsin Collie Rescue. Through their support, Sparky was neutered and underwent treatment for heart worms.

I finally had to tell Scott that we needed to go check out this purebred collie that needed a home. We drove to Cape Giraudeau with Heart to meet Sparky. Never a fan of car rides, Heart was probably just glad to be out of the car by that point. Obviously, the introduction went well. And we arranged to have Bobbi come do a home inspection. On August 12, Bobbi brought him to us and he officially became a much loved member of our family. What a sweet, smart boy!

The years have flown by much too quickly – filled with all the love and joy that is unique to collies: loud, enthusiastic barking, boisterous play with Heart and later Tiller, followed by deep sighs and intense sleep, gentle walks with Scott in the neighborhood with everyone stopping to tell him what a handsome, sweet boy he was.

Our grandkids have been blessed to have had Sparky here to greet them and love them. Tiller has had the benefit of his mischievousness (stealing Tiller’s favorite furrballz and prancing around victoriously), as well as letting Tiller know when he was out of line and needed to mind his manners. Heart has had a vocal teammate who helped her make sure that their flock was always safe and our yard secure.

It is a bit surreal – this happened so suddenly. In a little over a day, he was gone. He just turned 11 and we still had to get his birthday cake and treats. It just started with a cough, but one that wouldn’t stop. It reached the point where he couldn’t get comfortable, couldn’t get enough air.

Last night he was diagnosed with spontaneous pneumothorax, and up until the very end, he remained the sweet, loyal gentleman, the perfect collie! To relieve his suffering we had to say good bye. Scott and I were there to wish him Godspeed and great success in Heaven. Because we know that “All dogs go to Heaven.”

In Sparky’s memory, always, always, always give your dogs heart worm preventive.

Special thanks to MWCR for the tireless work that they do for this incredible breed, caring for collies in need till they find their forever families.

Much love to our friend Bobbi, who found a gentle, smart collie in need and helped him all those years ago.

And finally to Sparky, thank you sweet boy for your love and devotion. You are missed!

Sadie

Lovely Sadie, adopted in April 2007, passed away Saturday June 22, 2019. Sadie was born August 20, 2004 and we are thankful to you for giving us the opportunity to be part of her life. She was greatly loved and we are fortunate to of had her in our lives.

May Rainbow Bridge

Rex

Handsome senior Rex, adopted in early 2018, was found as a stray and surrendered to MWCR. This is from his mom and dad who gave him a wonderful, loving home:
May 9th, our beautiful beloved friend, Rex, went over the Rainbow Bridge. Because each step he took was painful, because he did not see well anymore, and mostly looked sad, because he could not get better, but only worse, we gently let him go. We are so grateful to have been able to have him with us as long as we did. His spirit was generous and gentle. His presence was comforting. Thank you, Rex, for coming to be part of our family as you always will be. Thank you MWCR for letting us bringing Rex to our lives.

Laddie

Laddie, originally known as Murdock, was indeed a collie in need of rescue when he came to us in 2015. He had a bad wound on his back end, several broken teeth and his coat was tangled into a solidly matted coat of armor with what appeared to be metal shavings stuck in it. He tested positive for tick borne diseases, which was not surprising since he was covered in fleas and ticks under that solid mass of hair. He also had a large abdominal mass that was drained of over 8 oz. of infected fluid. He was so badly matted that they couldn’t even tell if he was neutered until he was shaved. Despite it all, he was an absolute angel to everyone who was helping him and we share his family’s grief at his loss.

This is from his loving family: It’s with great sadness we helped Laddie (aka Murdock) over the Rainbow Bridge after he began having serious problems with his hips resulting in difficulty standing and pain. He came to us 3 1/2 years ago as a stray with multiple medical issues. These were resolved with the aid of MWCR and foster mom Mary Kozak. Laddie enriched our lives and the lives of his humans and was the friend to all dogs and cats. He was known as Mr Mellow in the neighborhood. We’ve had six collies (Lady, Chelsea, Maggie, Sam and Sadie), with three from MWCR. Laddie was at the top of the list. We will miss him terribly but will always have his memories to cherish. Thank you MWCR for giving us the opportunity to have Laddie for as long as we did.

Cooper, one of our special needs collies, went over the Rainbow Bridge this weekend. When he originally came to MWCR in 2017 from a shelter in Wisconsin he was only two years old. While there he was diagnosed with dermatomyocitis (DM), an autoimmune disorder of skin and muscle found primarily in collies and shelties. It had been active and untreated for several months but they started him on proper treatment for the DM and for a long time his symptoms were fairly mild, concentrated to his nose and his paws, which had no toenails and were sensitive to touch. His new dad did lots of research on DM before deciding to adopt him and dedicated himself to giving him all the care he needed.

Despite his condition, Cooper was a sweet, loving, happy boy who went everywhere with his dad and won over the hearts of everyone who met him. Earlier this month he was diagnosed with oral cancer. Because of the medications for his auto-immune issue, the cancer’s symptoms were suppressed at first so it progressed quite quickly over the last few weeks. On Sunday the cancer started to interfere with his ability to breath and his dad knew it was time. Our hearts go out to him and we are so appreciative of his willingness to open his heart to this special boy.

 

April Rainbow Bridge

Parker

Parker’s family had to say goodbye today (April 2): I can’t even begin to comprehend life without him. He was always the one who took care of me. When I was feeling down he was there, every morning started with a big collie snuggle and the day ended the same. I’m heart broken but Parker is happy again, running with his MWCR sister Maybellene. Thank you for giving us this gentle, loving soul. He was loved by all who knew him.

Annabelle

Beautiful Annabelle went to the rainbow bridge today. She was 11 years old. She began having seizures last week and did not respond well to her medication. She was an owner surrender that we fostered then adopted about five years ago. She was beautiful and loving. We will miss her.

Lassie

On April 27 we helped our dear Lassie (“Lassie Lou”) cross the Rainbow Bridge. She was just over 13 years old and had been battling arthritis and cancer. Below we share our story of our life with Lassie, but for those that don’t have the patience to read the entire story, know that Lassie was the most gentle, loving soul you could meet. She chose us to be her forever family, and we are forever grateful for the joy, happiness and love she brought us the last 6 years. Read her full tribute here.