“I stood in the airport on February 12 holding the hand of my 4-year-old son. We were waiting for Aunt Elly to come home. It was always such an exciting event… but she never did. Since that day, my heart aches to watch her scoop up one of my boys in her arms. I would give anything to see her walk through the front door of my parents house and sit down for dinner and listen to her tell us about her hysterical adventures. My daddy cries every day because he misses his little girl. He’ll never walk her down the aisle for her wedding or have his dance with his daughter. My mother will never go shopping with Elly for her wedding dress, or see the smile on her face when she finds that perfect gown. Every day my heart aches because I know that she never had the chance to be a mother, and that the world doesn’t have a piece of her to continue her legacy. Elly was fearless. She wasn’t intimidated by people or situations, she’d take every moment and enjoy it to the very fullest. She’d been skydiving, gone to the Kentucky Derby, visited all the big cities for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, and the week before she died, she went swimming with the dolphins. She would come up with the most outrageous ideas – at Christmas time, when all of her girlfriends from high school were back in town, they would dress up like elves and romp around from place to place, singing and hooking people with their canes… they called it “Elf Night.” She took people by surprise, she was gorgeous, charming, outrageously funny, and when she believed in something, she fought fiercely for it. She would have been an amazing attorney and made such an impact in her field.
What was so amazing about Elly was that she found a way to excel in school and spend endless time with her family in the midst of living so much life. She made the Dean’s List every semester in undergrad, won a prestigious full paid scholarship her senior year, and continued to win academic awards in law school. She had 4 nephews and a niece, and she spoke of them constantly. She had to find the biggest, most exciting gifts for them on every birthday. They were the joy of her life.
Elly… we don’t know what to do without you. There is an emptiness in all of us that can never be filled. The boys cry at night because they miss you so much. They said they’d rather have Elly back than “a thousand bucks or a million, thousand bucks.” My heart is broken because the babies will never know what an amazing aunt they had. Chris and I miss our crazy little sister, Lynsay and Dan are forever changed, and Mom and Dad have hearts that are so broken. Our lives will never be the same, but I’m so unspeakably grateful that we got to have you as a daughter, sister, aunt, and friend for 24 years. We miss you now and always.”
Laura Kausner Voigt – Sister of Elly Kausner