Rhonda Smith

Run for the Rose Hero Photo Rhonda Smith
Rhonda Smith was a wonderful woman. I don’t think she had an enemy in this world. She was my best friend. She worked for the Columbia School District in Columbia, MS for 23 years. She had retired in June of 2009 and was looking forward to her retirement years with my dad. They had been planning for their retirement for years. Towards the end of 2009, she began to have a few problems, but she tried to pretend that nothing was wrong. In February of 2010 she finally ended up in a local emergency room where she was told she had a tumor. She was transferred to the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, MS for surgery. Three days later she was diagnosed with a Glioblastoma, and we were told with treatment she would have 18-24 months to live. That seemed like the such a short amount of time. I couldn’t imagine how we could celebrate holidays that year knowing that by the end of the following year she would be gone. One month later, she was admitted to Forrest General Hospital in Hattiesburg, MS, because we could not wake her. We were told at that time that the tumor was back, bigger than it was just a month before. We were told then that she would only have weeks to live. They were able to treat the swelling, and we were able to come home. From the date of surgery until the day she passed, was only 2 months and 1 day. She fought hard for those 2 months. Those were the best and worst 2 months of my life. I wouldn’t trade the time we had together for anything in this world. She died a week before her 61st birthday.

She is missed every minute of every day. I made her a promise that I would work to make sure no other daughter had to lose her mom to such an awful disease. That is why I am participating in the Run for the Rose. It has taken me a little while to reach the point where I feel like I can do this. I look forward to coming out and spending time with people who truly know how I feel.