Krissie Griffiths left us at 2:57 am on Sunday, January 19th, 1997, after a long
and heroic battle against non-Hodgkins lymphoma
under the exceptional care of
Dr. George Waltuch
(and many, many others).
When it became clear her treatment was not going to be successful,
she had no fear of death, only of dying alone.
Her final hours were spent at
Stanford University Hospital
in the company of her husband Karl, her
sister-in-law Therese, The Rev. Margaret Irwin, and her close friends
Marc and Lynn Macy.
While not concerned about herself at the end, she was very concerned about her friends, and wanted them all to know that she was at peace with dying. She especially wanted everyone to celebrate life, not mourn death, and to that end wanted her memorial services to be a celebration of life. Two such celebrations were held, for the convenience of friends in her long-time home of Los Angeles and her recently adopted home in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Krissie Gets Published!!!
Lookin' back on the memory of
Holdin' you, I've held everything.
Yes, my life, it's better left to chance.
|Krissie did not want flowers, preferring that those who feel the need to do so make a memorial contribution directed to where it will do the most good for animal welfare and/or cancer research. Both were important to her, so please consider splitting contributions equally between the two causes, even if your own feeling is that one is more worthy than the other.|
Krissie loved farm animals, and wanted to live where she could have a pet cow and a pet pig. You can help farm animals with a contribution to
Not everyone is a vegan as Krissie was, so if helping farm animals is not your style, perhaps you'd prefer to contribute to the care and feeding of cats and dogs at a "no-kill" sanctuary for animals abandoned in the mountains surrounding Los Angeles:
While Krissie was not the big fan of horses that some are, it was hard for her to resist a mare and her foal in a beautiful setting south of Carmel, overlooking Monterey Bay. Many of the horses (and burros, which Karl was especially fond of) had stories that made Krissie very sad, knowing that lack of funding meant many others had not been so fortunate as the animals who did make it to
Redwings Horse Sanctuary
Krissie loved wild animals, too, with a special appreciation for marine mammals, perhaps because she lived her whole life within a short drive of on ocean. She was incensed at the thought of whales and other cetaceans being kept in aquarium tanks, where the confined spaces not only atrophy their muscles but, with hard walls to those spaces, cause the animals to become confused and disoriented from the multitude of sonar reflections. While she learned to love the Monterey Bay Aquarium, you might consider a memorial contribution to
The Marine Mammal Center
During her treatment, Krissie participated in a clinical trial at Stanford Medical Center. After many years of fighting against medical research using animals, arguing that all too often the results are only marginally applicable to humans (even if we have the right to experiment on other species), she welcomed the chance to serve as a more appropriate subject. She was struck, though, by the biography of Dr. Alan Yuen, her doctor during the study, which explained how much doctors give up by pursuing research careers, with comparatively meager funding, when they could do much better in private practice.
Krissie had wanted to find a good way to get contributions to where they'll do the most good for doctors who have sacrificed more financially rewarding career paths to focus on the personally rewarding goal of helping eradicate cancer, without paying the heavy overhead costs of many formal cancer organizations. So far, a good way to do this hasn't turned up. Suggestions would be most welcome!
There is a great deal of information about lymphoma available on the web:
Copyright © 1996-1999,2001-2003,2008, Karl L. Swartz. All rights reserved.
All trademarks mentioned herein belong to their respective owners.
Krissie Griffiths c/o Karl Swartz <firstname.lastname@example.org>