Celebrating the life of Jessie Proctor
October 14, 1917 to January 25, 2009
God moves in mysterious ways. This has been heard many times and in many circumstances. This is the manner that Jessie became a part of my life and a part of the Vasculitis Foundation Canada.
When I was diagnosed in 1997 the doctor’s didn’t know what to do with me but they did know of another lady who had the same disease as I had. We were both dealing with this rare disease called Wegener’s Granulomatosis. We instantly became friends with her having contacts to a support group in Kansas City and a list of contacts in Ontario. Contact was made with two men in Toronto and this was the start of something big to come. With perseverance, the Wegener’s Granulomatosis Support Group of Canada was formed and in less than a year after my first meeting with Jessie we had become a nationwide organization.
Jessie was extremely proud of our efforts. She believed in getting involved through research, and giving of herself to help others. I feel God gave Jessie a purpose and that was to intertwine her life with mine. Together we became closer because of our illness, giving hope and knowledge to many who thought they were all alone.
Jessie’s zest for life allowed her to follow her passion for travel seeing as much of the world as she could. Through out her life, Jessie volunteered her time to help many people and organizations. This was just her way, she enjoyed to give of herself. Jessie and her gift of help will be greatly missed by many.
Sympathy and empathy are sisters but with two separate identities. Sympathy can be felt by everyone but empathy is a bond that can only be felt by similar, if not identical experiences. This was the bond of our friendship and the crux of our support group.
Jessie got to watch us evolve once again in 1998 to form Vasculitis Foundation Canada which encompasses 15 different diseases. Our mission is growing with support with people like Jessie who are willing to share their story and give of themselves. She has passed on the torch so that we may carry on her vision for the one thing that eluded her – a cure!
With love and thanks from your many friends at VFC.
And a very special goodbye to my wonderful and dear friend,