"I remember when I was younger and I crashed on my bike, I came inside crying and My mom cleaned my scrape and told me to stop crying, because my tears weren’t real. I thougth she was crazy“ Those aren’t real tears, you’ll forget about the pain in a few minutes.” She was right. I soon forgot and before I knew it was outside playing like it never happened. Now, nine years later I am still crying over her loss and I know the tears are real because they come from the inside out.
The Pacific Northwest holds a mystical mix of American native life, places unsettled that stand the test of time, wild and majestically beautiful. There is a serentity and a majesty that is nowhere else. Beauty and wilderness combine with old and new.
Nine years ago Leona Kinsey was enjoying the lifestyle the area afforded with hunting, fishing, camping and running her own landscaping business. The week of October 25, 1999 her appointment book shows that she was booked for the whole week. That week turned out to be the last time Leona was seen, Monday October 25 at 4:30pm by her boyfriend only called "Lonnie".
Foul play is suspected, but no suspects have been named. Leona's vehicle was found the following Friday in the parking lot of a grocery store, but after authorities examined it, there was no evidence found, no signs of foul play in the vehicle itself. They have interviewed many they feel may be connected to the case, but have yet to name anyone in particular as a person of interest or suspect.
Nine years later a remembrance ceremony took place in the Native American tradition of Leona's heritage.She loved nature and it was only fitting that prayers and traditional dances were a part of it along with Native
Society member Tom Futter said he thinks a love of nature and belief in a spiritual being sustained Kinsey throughout her life.
“When you get to where you’re going, look at Mother Nature. Say a prayer to Grandfather and he will guide you,” Futter said.
For Carolyn DeFord remembering her mother's birthday is especially hard, memories tend to blur with time, but she was not ready to lose her mother and all of the future times they had planned. She is missing her today as much as she has missed her for the last nine years. A daughter searching for a mother lost to her is a daily reminder and when she closes her eyes she can see her, and keep those memories alive.
When I have a lot of worries, and my soul is weighted down,
I can almost hear him saying, "Only crosses make a crown."
And when my eyes are burning from the tears I have shed,
Comes this gentle voice "Remember What I suffered in your stead?”
When I look around for comfort, and there is no listening ear,
Comes a whisper close beside me, "Hush my child, for I am here!”
And somehow the heavy burden that I almost couldn't bear,
Slips from off my aching shoulders, and becomes as light as air.
And my heart is filled with gladness, and with peace when it recalls,
he knows all things, down to the time the smallest sparrow falls.
And a new hope stirs within me, like the beat of feathered wing,
and in his outstretched arms I find a love to which I cling.
And I am no longer troubled at the turning of the ways,
for long ago he told me "I am with you all the days".
And I find a blessed haven, beyond the reach of man,
just like the tiny sparrow that he shelters in his hand.
Please join us at Peace4 the Missing