Do you have something to celebrate? Whether it's a Birthday, New Release, or something else

Do you have something to celebrate? Whether it's a Birthday, New Release, or something else - Book your Celebration Roasting Bash now ! BUT FIRST PLEASE READ OLIVER'S RULES !

P
lease Note:
We don't do reviews or interviews. just virtual parties to promote your book!

As many of you may know, our beloved sister hostess SHARON DONOVAN, tragically passed away on 11th April 2012. We who knew her, loved her, and were inspired by her courage and determination to face head on whatever life threw at her. When she could no longer see to paint she turned to writing and showed her amazing talent in the Inspirational Romance and Romantic Suspense genres, and her story 'Charade Of Hearts' was awarded the coveted Predators and Editors Award in January 2011.

This Blog was a source of great delight to her, she was one of the founder hostesses and she contributed to the fun and silliness in her own original way, and was kind enough to let her unique creation, the hunky butler 'Oliver' join us for our Friday romp and prepare 'virtual breakfast' for the guests on the following morning. It's beyond hard to have to go on without her, but we know that she would have been the first to insist that 'the show must go on.' She is, and will always be with us in spirit.
Sharon, dear friend, we will never forget you.
The Author Roast and Toast is part of the legacy you left us. Let's raise a Toast to you as well as all our guests.
***********************************************************

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Tribute to Sharon


On 11th April, 2012, God in his great wisdom, decided to take our dear friend and sister hostess, Sharon Donovan to join the other angels in Heaven.  Today our 'Author Roast' is a tribute to Sharon, and a celebration of her life and works.  We love and miss you so much, Sharon. Thank you for enriching our lives and making the world a better place.

The covers of Sharon's Books

Links:
Her Greatest Fan and Charade of Hearts

'Touched By An Angel', The Claddagh Ring and 'Lasting Love'
 (You'll need to type Sharon's name in the Author searchbar  on the left of the page when you go into the site)

Mask Of The Betrayer

Echo Of A Raven
Sharon loved Ireland, she said "Wear a shamrock on your left lapel and you will be blessed all year with the wink of St. Patrick himself. This is fun and we all partake in it, but the true meaning of the shamrock, the three-leaf flower of Ireland, was used by St. Patrick to demonstrate the Trinity." 
She set her Inspirational story 'The Claddagh Ring', published by The Wild Rose Pressin Ireland.
Sharon wrote wonderful stories of suspense and inspiration, but probably her greatest creation, and the one she will be remembered for best, is her sexy virtual butler, Oliver, flirtatious, accomplished, occasionally a little foolish (although one suspects that was an act) and his personality shone through Sharon's words. He starred in her prize winning novella 'Charade of Hearts, for the WRP's series 'Jewel Of The Night' and also in the story she wrote for the 'Whimsical Publications' anthology 'Winter Wonders', entitled 'Christmas Angel'.  He became an extension of herself in many ways. One thing for sure, however much he may have flirted with the guests, somehow it was obvious that his heart belonged to Sharon, although he never said so - even when he overstepped the mark and Sharon would yell at him - "OLIVERRRRRR!"




In January, 2012, Sharon was awarded the Preditors & Editors Reader's award for 'best short story' for her novella, Charade Of Hearts

 
Sharon collected Carnival and Masquerade masks, which she featured in her suspense novel, Her Greatest Fan. She had her photo taken wearing a selection of her own masks


 This is Sharon's memoir, written to help others fighting diabetes and loss of sight, to provide information a based on her own experiences. Contains  information on the support and help available.
 Sharon said she would
 "... donate a certain percentage from sales of ECHO OF A RAVEN to the JDRF Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation fight for a cure. If I can prevent even one child from going through the nightmare of losing his or her vision, my book will be a smashing success."
 

 
"A kind and loving person and friend to all.  I can honestly say I never heard a negative comment from her about anyone or anything. She always found the bright side and the good things.  My prayers included her every night during her illness and I keep her in my prayers now. God has a special place for her I am so sure.  She is missed.

PATSY"
"In my life I have met many people. You don't get to my age without thinking you have seen it all. Then someone comes into your life and changes you forever.

I never heard her complain, not like I would if I were in her shoes. She lost her art when she lost her sight. Did that stop her? Not in the least, she learned how to use a computer with voice adaptive software, and poured her stored up talent into wonderful, entertaining, stories. She had a great sense of humor and a smile that lit up her face like a sparkler. Her tender feelings for animals and children said a lot about her. I used to laugh when she called us the Golden Girls. Which one was I, I'd ask her. Well which one do you want to be? She came right back. And darned if she didn't know I didn't know one from another.

Through two difficult heart surgeries she still never felt sorry for herself. She'd ask how you were. I can't imagine life without Sharon. I go to call her and it's a need which I will never fill again. Lyn still can hear her voice, and I think about her and cry. Not because she's not happy, for surely her wings are white as snow. But I cry because I am not with her. And yet she is till in my heart. So she is still here. As long as there are storytellers, as long as there is love, she will be here. As long someone who loved her lives, she will never be gone and will live on in her family and friends. So many people mourn her loss. Yet rejoice her fight! Because Sharon was a fighter and she gave inspiration to those around
her. Just because she was Sharon.
MARY"
                       
"Sharon was one of the most loving people I have ever known. She loved her family, her friends and animals, including horses, and used to ride until she lost her sight. Horses feature in 'Her Biggest Fan' and 'Christmas Angel'.  She loved Ireland and often talked about her visit there.  She also talked about the little black cat, Freddie, she used to have, which she obviously loved and  missed very much.  Now they are re-united beyond the Rainbow Bridge! 

And of course she loved being creative.  When she could could no longer create beauty with her brush she used words to paint her pictures and tell her stories - and what stories. I first met her when I read an interview where she mentioned how she'd turned to writing after she lost her sight. I was so full of admiration for this brave, determined woman and had to drop her a note.  She answered my email straight away and we started corresponding and soon formed a lasting and loving friendship. I  offered to make a trailer for her lovely Easter Inspirational story 'Lasting Love' and was so happy to be able to do something to help publicise her book. 

It was never one sided either. Sharon was always so full of gratitude and appreciation of any little thing one could do for her, and it was always a pleasure to help out.Sharon was the most generous and giving person, and would always be the first to offer an interview or a promotional post on her blog, where one would be waited upon, and flirted with, by her charming Man Friday, Oliver. The day she came out of hospital after her first heart attack, she telephoned me to wish me a Happy Birthday.  I am so glad I got to hear her voice through our telephone conversations. Her physical presence will be sorely missed by her friends and loving family, but her spirit lives on and her words will continue to give pleasure now and in the future.
LYN"

 If there’s one person in this world who has taught me so much and influenced me on a positive level, it’s my aunt and godmother, Sharon Donovan. She has lived nothing less than an inspiring life in which she still continues to impress those all around her, especially me! I can only hope to be half as successful as she has been, while managing to overcome nearly impossible obstacles. 

At the young age of twelve, Sharon was presented with disturbing news that was sure to affect anybody’s life. She was told that, by the age of twenty-five, she would lose her sight. The cause of this (tragedy) was diabetes, which had been diagnosed at the age of six. In her late teens and early twenties, Aunt Sharon became involved in art classes and demonstrated true talents at painting. When the day came, though, that she could no longer see the canvas in front of her, she had no choice but to give up her dreams of painting. However, this did not discourage her. When painting was no longer an option, she turned to a new outlet: writing. Now, nearly thirty years later, Sharon has put so much time and effort into writing and has become the author of three published novels, and countless short stories. 

As if suffering from diabetes and blindness wasn’t enough, last month Sharon suffered a major heart attack and a stroke as well. The chance of a complete recovery was pretty slim, but my family never doubted her ability to over these obstacles. Sure enough, she did. Though much has changed and she will have to be more careful than ever, Sharon found the strength to make it through. In her heart, I believe she knows she still has much more writing to do, and I believe that her writing will only improve. Not only has Sharon handled these situations well, but in the years between, she has gone through numerous surgeries, therapy, and countless doctor appointments. I truly believe that my Aunt Sharon’s story is amazing and one that could anyone could look up to. 

Sharon’s strengths and perseverance have influenced me in so many ways and have made me see things in a new light. First of all, one of her clearest, most admirable qualities is determination. Not only has she decided to live her life to the fullest, but she always strives to help others in the process. I can go to my aunt for help with anything, and I know that she’d be there for me. She also taught me to have faith and strength. Without these things, I now know it is impossible to survive any sort of challenge in life. To reach goals, we must believe in ourselves and she has inspired me to do just that for my future. My aunt has given me even more reason to want to be as educated and successful as possible. Finally, one of the most important things I have learned from her is not to take anything in life for granted because it could literally be gone in a second. 

I am so thankful to have the opportunities that I’ve had in my life. Even more importantly, I’m extremely blessed to have Sharon Donovan not only as my aunt, but my godmother. I’ve learned to see life in a new perspective and appreciate all things that have come my way when I strive to achieve, while at the same time staying motivated to be successful.
Kendal McCaulley

This was written by Sharon's niece. It got her accepted into one of the colleges she applied to. She loved her Aunt dearly. And what a great role model she had in Sharon!


 Sharon had an impish sense of fun and loved getting up to mischief at the Roasts. Her quirky sense of humour made us smile and our pranks on each other were always played with love.  Here are some excerpts of her comments on past Roasts:
"Sharon ever so slyly sneaks
up on Mary and Lyn, 
sweetly offers banana splits,
 then swiftly shoves 
in their mugs and runs
 off singing 
roll out those hazy crazy 
lazy days of summer..."

"Hi Lyn sweetie, give me a hug.
 Isn't Scotland beautiful, and the castle  
is so whimsical. I'm so glad that
Nessie didn't steal Mary's hooters."
                                                                                                           Hugs    sisters, looking good girls, 
even sopping wet. 
What fun we'll have, 
my butt is wiggling
 to the pulsating water jets.
OOOO I hope
they'll play Shake Your Bootie
 so I can show 'em 
how a real woman shakes it!

"Paul, here I am, a  
blood thirsty Irish lassie
 here to swoon over 
a writer of Irish songs. 
Save me a dance, handsome, 
right after I kick up me heels with Pat.
 *Wink*"

                                             "Sharon runs  from Mary and her squirt gun
 through the caves, 
Lyn, a hair behind.
 Somehow they
find those same steep steps 
and take another tumble down.
 Just another roast and toast."

"When God calls me home and I soar into the sweet hereafter, I would like to think I made a difference," she told me. "We are put on this earth for a reason. We all have a mission. If we do enough soul searching, we’ll find the answer. For the longest time, I didn’t know why I was put on this earth. During my long bout with progressive blindness, I walked around aimlessly, searching, wondering, floundering. Nothing made sense. And after the final operation that took my remaining vision overnight, I wanted it all to end. No more heartache. No more pain. Peace and tranquility. If I couldn’t see or paint, what was the point? But God works his magic in mysterious ways. When one door closes, another door opens. And once I took the first step to regaining my life back, they have never stopped opening. I think my purpose on earth is to create words of inspiration. Never give up on a dream. Reach for the stars. When my star faded, it was up to me to polish it and make it shine. And long after I’m gone, my star will twinkle in heaven with eternal brightness because I completed my work on this earth."

Sharon 'in costume'





  The Cladagh Ring



Mask Of The Betrayer



Lasting Love (Trailer by Hywela Lyn)
 
                           
Sharon, what a wonderful legacy you left us.  You will always live on in our hearts.  Let's raise a glass of Chardonnay in your honour  - we love you, Sharon!
Lasting love Rose
The Rose Beyond the Wall
Near a shady wall a rose once grew,
Budded and blossomed in the Sun’s light, Watered and fed by the morning dew, Shedding it’s sweetness day and night.
As it grew and blossomed fair and tall, 
Slowly rising to loftier height, It came to a crevice in the wall through 
which there shone a beam of light.


Onward it crept with added strength
With never a thought of fear or pride,
It followed the light through the  crevice’s length and unfolded itself On the other side.
The light, the dew, the broadening view were found the same as they were before, 
And it lost itself in beauties new, 
Breathing it’s fragrance more and more.

Shall claim of death cause us to grieve 
And make our courage faint and fall?
Nay! Let us faith and hope receive–
The rose still grows beyond the wall, 
Scattering fragrance far and wide
Just as it did in days of yore,
Just as it did on the other side,
Just as it will forevermore.

~ A. L. Frink ~



70 comments:

  1. What a beautiful tribute to your lovely friend. In all my dealings with Sharon I found her to be so kind and patient.

    Sharon will be greatly missed.

    Blessings to you

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  2. Thank you so much Margaret, she was a delightful and talented person and a wonderful friend.

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  3. A beautiful and moving tribute to a wonderful person who will never be forgotten. She will live on, not just through her books, but in the hearts of all those who were touched by her kindness and inspired by her bravery. Rest in peace, Sharon.

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  4. Thank you so much for stopping by Paula, I'm glad you liked our tribute. Sharon will be sadly missed, but as you say, lives on in our hearts and memories.

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  5. Thank you Lyn for putting together such a moving tribute to Sharon. She will be so missed but she is with us in our hearts!

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  6. Lyn, Mary, and Patsy, today's hostesses, I know that you miss Sharon's fun and silliness, but this is truly a beautiful tribute you've created for her. She'd love it!

    I think Sharon was an inspiration to everyone. I wish I could claim to be as brave as she, as strong as she had to be. I simply can not imagine the trials she suffered through.

    It may be an old cliche, but the truth rings through: "Gone, but not forgotten."

    I will always remember Sharon until the last day that I, too, walk this earth.

    Rest in peace, dear friend.

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  7. Thanks Patsy - we all loved Sharon so much - as you say, she'll always live in our hearts.

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  8. Thank you so much, Miss Mae, her courage and determination in all she was faced with is truly an inspiration to us all, in the words of her story, we felt we were 'touched by an angel', and now she has her wings.

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  9. The truth of the matter is that for us all Sharon was just unforgettable,she will always live on in our hearts.
    Lyn you put this together just amazingly!
    I will never let her go from my heart!

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  10. I can't hardly read the comments, breaks my heart!

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  11. Hello Mary, you're so right - Sharon will always be with us, we'll never forget her.

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  12. *Sigh* I know, Patsy. It hurts to think she's no longer with us, except in spirit - but then the comments, and the love that comes through them, shows how many people Sharon touched with her words and her friendship and just how much she was - and is - loved.

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  13. It so touches me how many people that she touched. Her spirit will live on in her stories. And her latest works will be edited and published!!!

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  14. Oh, ladies, you summed her up perfectly. Naughty, funny, witty, droll and full of great fun and nonsense - and yet deep and thoughtful and enormously caring and breathtakingly considerate. We came to know each other through diabetes and our mutual support of JDRF. My son is diabetic, and Sharon's frankness, honesty and encouragement meant the world to me - being able to express our feelings to each other was so important. Once we'd connected on that level, we connected on so many others - I loved getting her 'soul sis' emails, when she'd say she'd settled down with a glass of wine to write, 'cos she knew I'd be settling down with a glass of wine to read and write back!
    Sharon, you were the bee's knees and the cat's pyjamas, and you know I will miss you most of all at Christmas-time. :-) Sleep tight and sweet dreams, my dear pal.

    Jane x

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  15. A lovely tribute, Ladies. She was a beautiful person and an inspiration to us all.

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  16. Hello Jane, my lovely fellow UK friend. I know how much Sharon thought of you and your son, she would often talk about you and how she hoped her book would contribute in a small way to helpicg other chldren not to have to go through the same thing. Yhank you so much for stopping by and leaving your own tribute.

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  17. Thank you Nightingale - as you say, she was a beautiful person and a true inspiration.

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  18. I still just can't believe it...

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  19. Sharon was such a lovely lady. Just before her last surgery she sent me an email saying I was the winner on her blog and I received a t-shirt with Oliver's picture on it. It will always remind of Sharon and her kindness.

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  20. I didn't have the opportunity to know Sharon that well, but what I did know of her was lovely. The comments here scream 'special woman'. What a wonderful legacy to leave behind as she begins her new journey.

    Mac

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  21. Thank you so much for this beautiful send off for Sharon. I know she is smiling - especially about all of those lovely costumes. The poem made me cry, and I imagined Oliver reading it in his sensual baritone voice, having to stop now and again to clear his throat from the tears he fought back.

    Sharon touched our lives in such a positive way. Though I've never met her in person, I feel as though I've been privileged to know a true part of her just from her website, and these playful blogs, but most of all, from her wonderful writing.

    Well done, ladies. Well done, indeed.
    Lynne

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  22. Hi Mona

    Sharon did love to hold contests and give away lovely prizes. An Oliver Teeshirt is doubly precious!
    Sharon was one of a kind!

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  23. Hello Mac

    Thanks so much for visiting and leaving your kind comment - as you say, Sharon was a very special lady, and she did indeed leave us a wonderful legacy!

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  24. I only had the treat and pleasure of a few emails with Sharon, a few comments exchanged on her blog, but I learned to love her spirit in those few contacts. When she first told me she was blind I grew instant admiration for a woman so strong she could only change paths, letting nothing stop her creativity. I wish I'd known her better, had more time to get to know Sharon. Thank you for the lovely tribute. I know she'd approve and if she were here, I'm sure she'd have some sassy comment about it all.

    A rose to the end. Farewell, Sharon.

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  25. What a beautiful and moving tribute to a courageous lady. The words you shared here brought tears to my eyes.

    Thank you for sharing your memories and her amazing talent.

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  26. Ladies, what a beautiful tribute to a lady who defied all odds, who lifted everyone else, and who had a most amazing imagination. My only regret about my relationship with Sharon is that I never got to physically sit down with her (and Oliver). We had many virtual chats, phone conversations and emails extraordinaire but I would have loved to do more.

    While I enjoy all of the authors I work with, but Sharon was truly special. In fact, it was never work with her.

    I will miss her terribly. But while things here on earth are a little dimmer, I know that heaven is brighter as she and Oliver spread their cheer.

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  27. A beautiful tribute to a warm and wonderful person. I only knew Sharon through the Wild Rose Press loops. I so regret not getting the opportunity to meet her in person. Thanks to your loving tribute, I feel I know her a little bit better. My deepest sympathies to her family and those who knew her.

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  28. When I think of unbelievable strength and a never give up attitude - I think of Sharon.

    When I think of a truly precious gift, of someone who taught me so much in the short time I've known them - I think of Sharon.

    When I think of someone who deserves an eternity filled with joy, love, music and all the beautiful things that make a soul shine with blinding strength & brilliance - I think of Sharon.

    Until we meet again, Sharon - and give Oliver a hug and a smoochie from Maeve.

    Peace and joy to Sharon's family too. Such an extraordinary human being as Sharon had to have learned the gifts of unconditional love and grace from all of you she held so dear.

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  29. I popped in much earlier in the day and went straight to FaceBook to share this wonderful tribute with my FB friends. It's a lovely way to say goodbye.

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  30. Wow - what a wonderful tribute for an incredible person. Thank you girls for sharing the Sharon you knew with us all.

    She will live on in our memories and her voice will be heard again through her wonderful stories.

    Love and strength to her friends and family at this sad time.

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  31. Calissa and Lily - thank you for stopping by and your kind words for Sharon. I know she would have been very touched by all the lovely messages and tributes people have been leaving for her.

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  32. Hello Lori,

    Sadly we never got to meet our dear sister hostess either, although Mary and I were very close to doing so, and it's so sad that we never managed it. She was an incredible person, and gave so much of herself and was so feisty and courageous. The four of us had such fun together at these roasts, and she had a wonderful sense of humour.

    As you so rightly say, our loss is Heaven's gain, and She and Oliver are no doubt painting rainbows there, together.

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  33. Katherine - thank you for stopping by and your kind words for Sharon and her family. They were such a close family and I know these tributes to their Sharon will be treasured.

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  34. I got to 'know' Sharon through The Wild Rose loop and looked forward to participating on all of her blogs. She was so sweet and kind-hearted, but with a delightfully wicked sense of humor when the mood suited. I am honored and priviliged to have had our paths cross for this brief moment in time. She will be greatly missed.

    Ladies, this is a lovely tribute. Thank you.

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  35. Nancy, thank you so much for sharing our memorial post for Sharon, it means a lot to have her friends share our memories with us.

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  36. Maeve, what a lovely tribute you've left for Sharon. You're so right, she was an extraordinary person, and her wonderful, loving family surely helped make her the person she was.

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  37. LaVerne and Debra, thank you both for stopping to leave your kind words for Sharon, and for us and her family.
    I know her folks will be as moved as Sharon would have been by all the love being shown for her around the web.

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  38. I never had the opportunity to meet Sharon in person. But her positive comments shone in the Wild Rose Authors loop, so I felt that I got to know her. She will be missed by her friends, family and readers; but her words will live on. Rest in peace Sharon!

    Roni Denholtz

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  39. Roni, thank you for sending us your kind tribute to our dear friend. So sorry you had trouble posting, Blogger can be uncooperative sometimes!

    She certainly had a way of making people feel they'd known her for ever, and she will be so sorely missed - like you say her words will live on and she will never be forgotten.

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  40. A Beautiful tribute. I am deeply touched by it. Sharon was funny and fun and kind to me, one of the first roses in the Garden to befriend me. I really appreciated her reaching out to a newbie like that. I had no idea of all her physical challenges. She carried them so gracefully they seemed not to weigh her at all. Obviously that wasn't true because she lost that final battle, but in her own way, she won. She is free from all that burdened her here, but so terribly missed. My heart and prayers go out to her close friends and dear family. May God bless and comfort you all. And may her legacy of courage, kindness, humor, grace and dedication to writing wonderful stories, continue to inspire us.

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  41. The comments are just wonderful. Sharon must be smiling down on us!!!
    She will always be in my soul!

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  42. Beth, thank you for your lovely comment, I too met Sharon through the 'Garden' of the Wild Rose Press, - she made so many friends and was so supportive and helpful, it was easy to lose sight of all that she had to overcome herself.

    Mary, you're right, I'm sure Sharon is smiling down on us, always with us and very touched by the lovely comments and to know she was so loved.

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  43. Mary, this is such a beautiful tribute to your dear friend, a talented, strong woman that overcame so many obstacles in her life and triumphed. Sharon you're an inspiration to us all. We love and admire you.

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  44. Thank you for coming over and for your kind comment,so many people found Sharon an inspiration, she truly was amazing.

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  45. I did not know Sharon personally, but I do know that she was a very courageous lady. I truly admire her determination in the face of adversity.

    --Samantha Gentry
    a fellow Wild Rose Press author

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  46. Hi Samantha - you're so right, Sharon was the most courageous person I've ever known. Her determination makes me feel very humble.

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  47. What a beautiful and heartwarming post. I didn't know her personally but; I still feel as if I lost a dear friend. She(you all)made me feel so welcome here. I found Sharon when she was very sick the time before when everyone was posting on Facebook. So I joined the praying. After she got better she thanked me for my kind words and she sent me an eBook just because. What a wonderful thing to do. She toke time out to thank me. Well of course I read the book "Her Greatest Fan" and I was hooked. Later I was lucky enough to receive a signed copy. Just that little bit and how wonderful she was to me made me love her as a friend. I will remember her always and I know I know I can just pick up one of her books and know she will be reading with me.
    Sue B

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  48. Hi Sue

    Thank you for sharing that lovely memory of Sharon - that is just the sort of generous gesture that was so typical of Sharon. She was always so appreciative of every everything and just loved hearing from her friends and readers.

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  49. I am just thrilled a the wonderful comments and love for Sharon!

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  50. They're wonderful, aren't they Mary - so many people loved and cared about her.

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  51. I will miss her terribly.
    But, I celebrate her life!

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  52. If there’s one person in this world who has taught me so much and influenced me on a positive level, it’s my aunt and godmother, Sharon Donovan. She has lived nothing less than an inspiring life in which she still continues to impress those all around her, especially me! I can only hope to be half as successful as she has been, while managing to overcome nearly impossible obstacles.
    At the young age of twelve, Sharon was presented with disturbing news that was sure to affect anybody’s life. She was told that, by the age of twenty-five, she would lose her sight. The cause of this (tragedy) was diabetes, which had been diagnosed at the age of six. In her late teens and early twenties, Aunt Sharon became involved in art classes and demonstrated true talents at painting. When the day came, though, that she could no longer see the canvas in front of her, she had no choice but to give up her dreams of painting. However, this did not discourage her. When painting was no longer an option, she turned to a new outlet: writing. Now, nearly thirty years later, Sharon has put so much time and effort into writing and has become the author of three published novels, and countless short stories.
    As if suffering from diabetes and blindness wasn’t enough, last month Sharon suffered a major heart attack and a stroke as well. The chance of a complete recovery was pretty slim, but my family never doubted her ability to over these obstacles. Sure enough, she did. Though much has changed and she will have to be more careful than ever, Sharon found the strength to make it through. In her heart, I believe she knows she still has much more writing to do, and I believe that her writing will only improve. Not only has Sharon handled these situations well, but in the years between, she has gone through numerous surgeries, therapy, and countless doctor appointments. I truly believe that my Aunt Sharon’s story is amazing and one that could anyone could look up to.
    Sharon’s strengths and perseverance have influenced me in so many ways and have made me see things in a new light. First of all, one of her clearest, most admirable qualities is determination. Not only has she decided to live her life to the fullest, but she always strives to help others in the process. I can go to my aunt for help with anything, and I know that she’d be there for me. She also taught me to have faith and strength. Without these things, I now know it is impossible to survive any sort of challenge in life. To reach goals, we must believe in ourselves and she has inspired me to do just that for my future. My aunt has given me even more reason to want to be as educated and successful as possible. Finally, one of the most important things I have learned from her is not to take anything in life for granted because it could literally be gone in a second.
    I am so thankful to have the opportunities that I’ve had in my life. Even more importantly, I’m extremely blessed to have Sharon Donovan not only as my aunt, but my godmother. I’ve learned to see life in a new perspective and appreciate all things that have come my way when I strive to achieve, while at the same time staying motivated to be successful.

    This was written by Sharon's niece. It got her accepted into one of the colleges she applied to. She loved her Aunt dearly. And what a great role model she had in Sharon!

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  53. That was a wonderful tribute to Sharon. She will be missed.

    Everyone who knew her will always carry a piece of her in their heart and those of us who didn't, can get to know her through her novels.

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  54. For Sharon

    Tears flow freely,
    obscuring my vision.
    Yet, now you can see.

    What was the first thing you saw,
    my friend,
    when you opened your eyes,
    free from the blindness
    you knew too well?

    The tubes are gone,
    the incessant beeping of the machines
    quieted.

    And the cane,
    that blasted white cane,
    is nowhere to be found.
    You are free.

    My sorrow is deep
    as I grieve the loss of a friend.
    A friend who was never at a loss
    for encouraging words.
    A friend who celebrated every success with me,
    however small.

    My sorrow is deep
    for my friend’s missed opportunities,
    as if any of that matters now.

    My sorry is deep
    for all those who loved you.

    But, my dear friend,
    my joy is in knowing you can see again …
    perfectly.

    And in my mind,
    I see you riding bareback through beautiful fields of wildflowers
    and along sandy beaches,
    delighting in the scenes around you
    and in the new life you have found.


    -- Hana Haatainen Caye (still trying to process the reality that my dear friend, Sharon, is gone)

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  55. Thanks for stopping by and your kind words for Sharon, her books will ensure she lives on in her wonderful stories.

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  56. That's beautiful Hana - I think we're all in a state of denial about our beloved friend - she will never, ever be forgotten although she will always be sorely missed.

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  57. Hana I feel your pain. That was so heartfelt, Sharon is surely feeling the love! She will always be with you...

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  58. Thanks, Hywela and Mary. I'm just really hurting tonight.

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  59. I'm late to hear the news but not any less sad than everyone else. I'm sorry to hear about her passing. It's at least good to know that she is in a better place now. God bless Sharon.

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  60. Thank you for your kind message, Melissa, I remember how much fun we had at the Roast for your book 'The Raie Chaelia' last year, and how Sharon loved the idea of the four hostesses being dressed as the 'four horsewomen'!

    I like to think of her spirit peeking at our computer screens, smiling that sunny smile of hers, out of pain now and able to see again!

    As you say, God Bless, Sharon!

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  61. I toasted Sharon at the Pennwriters Conference in Lancaster during the Saturday lunch event. She was truly missed at the conference this year.

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  62. Aw, thanks for sharing that GG - I know Sharon always looked forward to the PWC and I used to enjoy hearing about it from her.

    So sad I never got to meet her in person but one thing is certain, she will never be forgotten!

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  63. No, Hywela, she certainly won't.

    I'm walking to raise money for the Women's Choice Network in Pittsburgh in her honor on June 16th. Here is the link, in case anyone would like to make a donation:

    http://www.ministrysync.com/event/website/?m=1028454#0

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  64. Sharon was a wonderful inspiration and friend to all. She is dearly missed. Thanks for the lovely tribute!

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  65. Thanks Cate, she is indeed sorely missed, but still with us in spirit and never forgotten.

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  66. What better tribute to a life than the love of your friends. You are all so blessed to have each other.

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  67. I'm so sorry I didn't get a chance to meet this well-loved and talented author. Your tributes to her are just lovely.

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  68. Hi Shelley and Evelyn, thanks so much for your kind comments, glad yo enjoyed the tributes, Evelyn, and you're so right Shelley, there is nothing so precious as the love of friends.

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  69. A lovely tribute to a lovely woman and talented writer.I only knew Sharon through the roast and toast but her sparkle made for such fun. What a girl - such mischief!

    Janice xx

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  70. Hi Janice, thanks so much for yourlovely comments - Sharon would have been over the moon that her fun and - yes - 'mischief' gave so much pleasure to so many people.

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