October 23, 1948 - November 14, 2020
Lynn Anita Harden Oct. 23, 1948 - Nov. 14, 2020 Lynn Anita Harden was released from her amazing journey at 6 p.m. on November 14, 2020. My sister was an extraordinary woman: emotionally complex, exotically beautiful, brilliant, and gracious. As a big sister, she set the bar for me in elegance of style and execution. There was nothing she ever did that was thrown together at the last minute. Projects,events, and holiday celebrations were strategically planned and over-the-top, beautifully decorated. Even a simple dinner of chili was presented with flare--table set with beautiful bowls, jazz playing, candles lit. She was blessed with an ability to make you feel worthy of all the extra work she provided for your pleasure. Lynn was so much like our mother. We often reflected on our accomplishments and marveled at how far we had come from living on “The Lake,” in South Bend, Indiana, which was no resort by any means. Lynn and I grew up in a neighborhood of barrack- like apartments and dusty gravel streets. We never knew how poor we were. We never looked at our “project” surroundings as a ghetto. It was a community of mothers and fathers,living a stone’s throw away from each other, all striving to push their children forward. Inside our tiny, two- bedroom apartment was a different world. Our parents,Blanche and Clinton Harden, provided a foundation of love, a demand for education, a spiritual compass and the confidence that we would make our mark on the world …simply because we were their children. We fulfilled their dreams for us --as so many of our childhood friends also did for their parents. We never worried about how to propel ourselves from “The Lake” to the boardroom. We just stepped forward into every opportunity, confident and prepared. But Lynn always took it a step further. Lynn graduated from Purdue University in 1972 with a B.S. in Audiology & Speech Pathology. For nearly 30 years she contributed to non-profit organizational development and growth through strategic fundraising throughout the United States, The Ukraine and Cameroon, West Africa. She leveraged over 50 million from private, federal and corporate sources for projects ranging from community economic development, employment and training programs. She gave a development class in Bejiing China; moved to New York in her late 50s to work for Faith & Values Media…, a move to Portland to work an insurance company. . If a good opportunity, she morphed herself into the job description--and was off. We admired each other for the women we had become. “Amazing,” we would laugh,“ for two girls from The Lake. She was talented in so many ways, yet poor health. Years of surgery, trips to doctors, arthritis, dialysis three times a week took their physical and psychological toll. Lynn battled her illnesses, researched medical developments and challenged the doctors charged with her care. She was burdened with pain and complications, yet so determined to get back to the life she loved. As painful as it was, I’m glad I was the one who gave the directive to release her. The time had come to surrender. Naturally she had requested a homegoing service that would be unlike any other.“I don’t want a regular funeral, she once told me. “It should be like a wonderful cocktail party- I want drinks served, people laughing, music playing. Then take my ashes and scatter them at Silver Beach, where we went on Sundays.” And so it shall be. We will host her memorial celebration next summer when it is safer for all her friends and associates to come together in the style and joy she spread throughout her life. Then we will head to Silver Beach, located in St. Joseph, Michigan, where our parents took us after church so many hot Sunday afternoons for massive picnics with other families. I will release her to the wind, to carry her memory across the vast shores of Lake Michigan. I know her spirit is already directing the angels to have a little more style to put more candles and flowers on the tables. They undoubtedly knew the woman who was called home to be with The Lord was special in the eyes of everyone she encountered. Lynn, it has been an honor to have grown up as your “little sister.” I pray your transition from this place into God’s hands was beautiful and answered all of life’s mysteries. I will forever smile when I think about our journeys went off into different directions, always to come back together as sisters, bonded in love and respect for each other. Your adventure is complete now. And I will forever smile with pride that you...that smart, beautiful girl from “The Lake,” with the pretty longhair left her mark on this world. Well done. Until we meet again…Love, Gayle
Lynn Anita Harden Oct. 23, 1948 - Nov. 14, 2020 Lynn Anita Harden was released from her amazing journey at 6 p.m. on November 14, 2020. My sister was an extraordinary woman: emotionally complex, exotically beautiful, brilliant, and gracious.... View Obituary & Service Information
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Lynn Anita Harden Oct. 23, 1948 - Nov. 14, 2020
Lynn Anita Harden...
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