Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Our friend Kate Billings

Dee's business partner and our great friend Kate Billings, 52 years old, died this afternoon at about 4 at a hospice in Sandwich, here on Cape Cod. Katie was an acupuncturist and made room in her office for Dee and her massage practice, as well as several other women and their own health-related practices.
Katie was diagnosed with lung cancer less than a year ago and has been through surgeries and chemotherapy ever since that discovery. She bore it all with grace and was supported and defended throughout by Rich Van Heynigen, her life partner for about ten years. We all thought until fairly recently that she would get past the disease and the treatment and resume her practice in Falmouth. I think everyone fully expected Kate and Rich to get back on the sloop that they loved and sail off toward Key West sooner rather than later.
That's all. Not many people who read this blog knew Katie, but I wanted you to know about her.

12 comments:

traceybroome@mindspring.com said...

Sorry for your loss. My dad died from lung cancer 15 years ago and I still think of him every day. I went to my uncle's funeral Tuesday, he was the last one to be with my dad when he died, they were best friends. Loss is sooooo hard, isn't it?

Hollis Engley said...

Thanks, Tracey. It is indeed hard. Kate was a great woman with a wonderful spirit. Sorry to hear about your uncle. That generation is disappearing, isn't it?

MVBLH said...

So sorry to hear about Kate. Please give Dee my sympathies. Life gets more precious every year; I sense that alot lately, perhaps because of living with a "still immortal" teenager. Wish there were better words that would take away the pain, but they don't exist I think...But am thinking of you and Dee...

Dan Finnegan said...

Hollis and Dee, I'm sorry for the passing of your friend, Kate. I hate that our world is getting smaller in ways like that.

paul jessop said...

Hollis that is sad news indeed.
I know how you must be feeling right now. My Brother Dan died of Lung Cancer just over two years ago now, and I sat with him as he took his last breath. he was 48 at the time.
Mind you he crammed a lot of stuff into 48 years.

Hollis Engley said...

Thanks, all. One of the good things about this blogging business is the family of friends that develop at long distance. I try to keep this mostly about pots, but sometimes other things intrude. Thanks for being there. Paul, I'm sorry to hear about your brother. He was too young. And Dan, Kate would have been here for that paella that you helped cook last summer. They were off sailing, but hated to miss the paella, her favorite dish. I made it for her a few times while she was sick. And thanks, BH, I'll convey that to Dee.

Hollis Engley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tiffany said...

Hi Hollis,
I read about Kate's passing in the paper tonight. She was a great woman and healer. She treated our whole family after we moved from Seattle five years ago. I was always amazed that as I made new friends, my most favorite people here in Falmouth already knew about Kate and her gifts. Our deepest sympathy to her friends and family. - Tiffany Van Mooy

Lili-grommet (not really)-freak said...

Thank you for posting the news about Kate. We were in acupuncture school together and she was always one of the few to rise above, someone you could count on to always maintain a high degree of integrity.
She was kind and thoughtful and funny.
That is very sad news.
Susan Patten
Newburyport

(using my daughter's e-mail address)

C said...

To all whom Kate shared her being with, I was saddened to hear her passing...

She remains in my thoughts, a kindred colleague and spirit,

Namaste dear Kate, your light Qi continues on...

Carol Green, Lic.Ac.

Susan said...

I thought Kate would have surely survived this. How sad. She welcomed me into the Cape and the acupuncture community 6 years ago, when I first arrived. She was one of the most generous and down to earth people I have ever met in the holistic health community.

Susan Dellea, Lic.Ac.
Sandwich

Julie said...

Long story short, I just found out about Kate's passing. I am deeply saddened by her loss. I was a client of hers several years ago. She was a great person and I am grateful to have known her. My sympathy to all those who knew her.