Sadly we announce that Sharon passed away on October 27, 2006
Radcliffe, Sharon Lynn (Piester)
RADCLIFFE, SHARON LYNN (PIESTER) Loving mother and wife, entered God's garden at age 49, on October 27th, at her home in Corona. Sharon is now without pain, after an extended battle with lung cancer. Sharon was born 11/16/56, in Great Barrington, MA, of Gloria and William Piester. Sharon graduated Hudson High School in Hudson NY in 1975. She attended other schools to become a certified Veterinarian Technician, and a certified Animal Groomer. A true animal lover, Sharon raised, showed, and competed with her quarter-horses in high school, where she won numerous championship trophies and 4-H awards. Sharon has also owned canaries, parrots, cockatoos, dogs, cats, fish, and rabbits, For the love of all things living, Sharon could also often be found tending to her "Secret Garden". Sharon has been a homemaker for the last 10 years, helping to restore and re-decorate the 1896 Victorian Farmhouse she and her family resides in. Sharon is survived by her husband of 31 years, David Radcliffe, of Orange, CA; son Bryan (30), born in Bermuda, his wife Christine; and daughter Lauren (25), born in Wharton, TX. Both of Sharon's children are proudly serving in our Armed Forces. Sharon is also survived by two brothers; Allen Piester in Copake, NY, and Leland Piester in Fort Mead, FL. Sharon also leaves behind 6 nieces, 9 nephews, and 4 grandchildren. Funeral Services will be held at Riverside National Cemetery on Thursday, November 9th at 10:00 am. There will be no viewing, but anyone who touched Sharon's life is invited to attend the funeral. Services will be followed by a reception, and a celebration of her life at her home in Corona.
Published in the Press-Enterprise on 11/5/2006.
Spouse of David Radcliffe
WRHS Class of 1973
My good friends, I held Sharon's hand and kissed her good-bye for the last time early this morning as she passed away into the next life. I will notify everyone of the logistics of services as those arrangements are finalized next week. I'm still trying to get Bryan out of Baghdad before committing to a date, but I suspect I'll try for inclusion into the VA cemetery in Riverside on or around Monday, Nov 6th (they don't have services on weekends).
I'm not sending this out to my larger distribution list, I'll do that when I have the arrangements squared away. I didn't want to wait until next week to notify the folks I believe had an impact on Sharon's life. You've all touched both of our lives for the better, and I thank you for that. Just know that Sharon went quickly, and as comfortably as anyone possibly could.
All my best,
October 27, 2006
She is perfect now. I'll pray for the living.
October 29, 2006
October 24, 2006
WRHS Class of 1973
Friends and Family, a good friend of mine suffered a heart attack Wednesday night, and died at age 54. It tugs at my heart the number of times the two of us laughed on the phone, sent bad jokes, and promised to get together again one of these days. But, a sudden event can just pluck us from where we sit at any moment, with no prior notification, and no warning. Well, according to the doctor last night, my dear companion of more than 30 years has but a few weeks left, at most -- to share this life with me. I can't say which is better, knowing in advance or not. I accepted Sharon's condition a long time ago, and as much as I tried to look away from the hard truth and remain positive, the inevitable has been in clear view since the cancer came back in July. So, I guess this will be my last update, (although I've not completely given up on miracles). But, what I will do, is thank all of you for your prayers, your notes, and your kind words of encouragement that we've received over the last year. There's no need to pray for her to recover, only that she be in peace. She can no longer walk as of a few days ago, but she's in no pain, nor does she know what's going on... she's mostly in and out of peaceful sleep. She's as comfortable as anyone could be, her sense of humor still pokes through, and when she's awake, her eyes shine with the innocence of a child.
I can only say that I am so lucky to have been, and still am, the love of Sharon's life; and to be blessed with the good fortune to have spent much of my life with her. I suggest for those of you who are waiting for "some day", or "one of these days", that you stop waiting, and grasp every bit of life that you can. Hold the one you love, and tell them you love them every chance you get.
With all my best,
Sharon Radcliffe's Birthday Celebration
November 12, 2005
A birthday hug from Dave!
Chef and Host, Dave Radcliffe
Aunt Bridget and Lauren
Dinner is almost ready.
October 20, 2004
WRHS Class of 1973
Family, friends, co-workers, and those other folks somewhere in between... First, I want to thank all of you, and with all of my heart, for your prayers and emails supporting Sharon and I through her battle with lung cancer. Sharon had her first cat-scan last week since she began Chemotherapy 4 months ago. We met with the Doctor yesterday afternoon for our first insight into whether the Chemo was working.
The doctor examined the X-rays on the lighted panels for about 10 minutes, going back and forth from one slide to another, slightly grumbling to himself. He checked the name on the slides to make sure they were Sharon's. He flipped them over, back wards, and upside down. He appeared a little perplexed when he looked at us and said he couldn't find anything; literally... the cancer is completely gone!!! We did catch this early, but he's never seen results this good before, this is as good as it could possibly get. I struggled to hold back my tears as a large weight was lifted from me.
Sharon will still have to go through 6 weeks of radiation beginning in November, and she'll continue with a lighter dose of Chemo for that period. This is a measure to ensure the cancer does not come back. The radiation will be tougher on her than the Chemo was, but we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. We caught this early enough that there will be no post treatment requirements and no surgery. Her hair won't start growing back yet, but she's gotten so comfortable being bald, that I occasionally have to remind her to grab her hat on the way out the door.
In celebration of these results, and considering Sharon's birthday is on the 16th of next month, I'll use this time frame to begin planning a birthday party /celebration for her. So, all our friends and relatives here in So Cal will be invited to join us. This will probably take place on Saturday, November 12th, since the 16th falls on a Wednesday. Of course, others are always welcome, but we'll patiently look forward to seeing most of our reunion friends next April in Mesa. I'll send more details about the party, as soon as I come up with some. For those of you locally, please tentatively pencil in the 12th of November. I suspect I'll try and have our daughter take Sharon to a day spa for some pampering in the morning, (maybe a head wax & shine at a car detailer)... oh stop it, I'm kidding... while I prep the grill(s) and people arrive here; or to allow time for everyone to meet somewhere else in the area to surprise her. For the locals.... an initial / tentative RSVP for the 12th would give me an early idea on what to plan.
WRHS Class of 1971
Dave, I am glad I got the chance to meet you and Sharon at the 2005 Reunion which was the first reunion, Ramona and I had attended. It was a long time coming. I am so happy to hear that Cheryl's condition is improving. I truly believe that anything is possible through prayers, faith and hope. As long as you and Sharon continue to draw strength from each another and all your family and friends, there is always hope. Take it from someone with personal experience, the worst part is over, the radiation treatment is a breeze. Just know that you and Sharon are in all our prayers and that Sharon will get better.
WRHS Class of 1973
I guess saying this now might be easier than later. And, some of you already know part of it, others do not. I guess the easiest way is to just come out and say it quite matter of factly, that my wife Sharon has inoperable lung cancer.
We were both smokers until a couple of years ago when we quit the habit together... so we could be around longer to enjoy our new grandchild; and now another one to arrive by year end. Irony does things on it's own accord I suppose. Sharon's mom died of lung cancer in her late 60's, and I've spoken to a few people lately with relatives who've gotten lung cancer, but never smoked... go figure.
Sharon doesn't exhibit any symptoms, even today. This was all discovered because they took a chest X-ray before giving her anesthesia, prior to removing a bump on her finger back in March. Someone noticed some spots on the X-ray and 4 months and 4 doctors later, a surgical biopsy indicated it's stage 3 of out 4 cancer, with 4 being 100% fatal. According to the doctor, she has a 50/50 chance of living beyond the next 8 or 9 months as it stands right now. She still has to have a bone scan done to see if the cancer has spread to other organs; if it has, then she is actually already in stage 4.
Once the insurance approves it, she will start chemotherapy in a few weeks and will continue for 3 months before another cat-scan is done to determine whether it is having any effect on the tumors. If it is working, she will also begin Radiation therapy at that time. I've joked that we'll get her that Shani O'Conner hair cut and a Radiation diet make over... but, she struggles to see the humor in it. I'll send out another update in 3 months, or sooner if things change, hopefully it will be a note to say we're winning the battle.
Sharon doesn't know I'm sending this note, and it's certainly not for your sympathy, it is only for your prayers. You have to stand, be strong and fight for what you want in this life -- and sometimes, for life itself. I have confidence that we'll beat this, but we can use all the help we can get. I could have waited until after the fact, and sent a note when all was said and done, but for what good would that do then? To say that either Sharon had passed away, or that she had cancer and beat it would not mean as much as writing this note does to me today.
I guess the only other thing I can say is that if you smoke, please stop. And, not for yourself, but for those who love you. And, if you received this email, then you have at least one friend who would not want to see you go.
WRHS Class of 1964
Please convey to David and Sharon that my thoughts and prayers are with them -- they seem so happy in the photo. May God bless them and their families.
WRHS Class of 1973
Our prayers and thoughts are with Sharon, Dave and the kids. I will always be there to do whatever you need.
WRHS Class of 1974
Thank you for letting people know about Sharon, because prayers do help. I heard a person say that prayers are like musical notes going up to heaven. I will be sending prayers for Sharon and your whole family.
You both have many years together and have made a life with each other. I have no doubt that you will be right beside Sharon every step of the way and so, dear friends, please know that you are loved and if you need anything, please don't hesitate to let us know.
WRHS Class of 1965
What a shock to hear as I am sure it was very shocking for you both. When one of our own hurts, we all hurt. None of us knows how we would handle that situation unless it happens to us. You are both very brave and I admire the love you both have for each other as you face this together. I have a co-worker that has been going through this very thing right now and I am happy to report the Chemo is working very well. I hold out much hope that it will for Sharon too and the next time we will hear good news. I will be praying for you and Sharon as well as with the rest of your family. Your love for each other and the love of your family and Classmates will carry you through these difficult times. Hang in there and remember we love you both.
WRHS Class of 1965
I think of you both daily and my prayers are with you for a speedy and complete recovery. You both are such special people, who I have gotten to know through our reunions, and I am so lucky to have met both of you and various members for your family. Much love and very special thoughts as we anxiously await your progress.
WRHS Class of 1966
Dave; Thank you for letting us all know about what's going on with Sharon. It's times like these, that friends and family can be our greatest means of support. Just know that the "Greater WRHS Family", is behind you both and we will all keep you in our thoughts and prayers as your face this difficult challenge. I look forward to seeing you both at next years reunion. God Bless you both.
WRHS Class of 1965
Dear Dave and Sharon, Thank you for sharing your letter with your WR family. It is my wish and prayer that you remain strong (Sharon is a lucky woman to have found you). I will keep you and Sharon in my thoughts and prayers. If there is something I can do to help, please do not hesitate to ask
WRHS Class of 1972
Dave, here are my thoughts and prayers for your family. Sharon is so blessed with a wonderful man like you. We will definitely continue to give support and I will burn cedar for your family. Here's encouraging you with strength and healing and most of all love. Take care and keep us informed of Sharon's progress. Always, Love and Prayers - Melinda and Family