I met Louise some time in 1993 at a Pampered Chef conference. I was drawn to her smile and friendly demeanor. Over the years we have become close friends, sharing so many laughs and traveling to many fun places. Louise was always an inspiration to those around her, offering life lessons and encouragement. Our connection became closer when we realized that we shared a common bond of being a caregiver of someone with disabilities; she with her children and I with my sister.

In all the years we’ve traveled together, dancing on the streets and exploring the sites, I have always been amazed by her ease in talking with people, whether it’s an Executive or a Service worker. Louise doesn’t know a stranger. She treats everyone with respect, is interest in who they are, and always always always calls people by their first name.

Over the years I watched in awe as she cared for her children Joshua and Leah, juggled many hats and ran a successful business. She Never and I mean NEVER complained.  At meetings and conferences, her energy and interest is usually always on others and not herself.  That is why the memory I have, late one night in a hotel room, is the most special of all my memories of Louise. I have never shared it with anyone until now.

Joshua was missing his mom, so his caregiver Bre had phoned so that Joshua could talk to his mom.  Louise was very caring in soothing him and very focused on the conversation with him.  I could tell she was comforting Joshua so that he would be at ease until she returned home in a or two.  When she hung up the phone, she began to sob.  I did my best to comfort her but wasn’t sure how to. She was always the one comforting others.  We talked about how difficult it was to be away from our kids but also how necessary it was for her to have respite.

For this, Louise is my hero – caring for these two amazing children with special needs, knowing when to put herself first, and never complaining – EVER!

Tracy Godat

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