I met Laurinda in about 1968, when she was a senior at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School. She and her mother came to Washington College, where I taught at the time, in Chestertown, Md. on the Eastern Shore. She was thinking of going to college there, but she picked Goucher instead. I hope it wasn't something I said.

-- Roger Petersen, Mountain View, Calif.

I had several opportunities to work with her while she worked at the Access Board and always enjoyed them. Laurinda was one of the most cheerful people I have known, and very knowledgeable too; a combination of traits that I could not help but admire. We will miss her.

-- Melanie Brunson, ACB Executive Director, Arlington, Va.

I haven't seen Laurinda in years but was thinking about her just the other day. I worked the convention office when she worked the information desk, and we used to pass information back and forth all the time, and occasionally cover for each other. I think the last time I saw her was shortly after she and Chip got married. She and Pat were very good friends; isn't it weird that they passed away so close to each other.

-- Jean Mann, Guilderland, N.Y.

Both Gayle and I spent lots of quality time with Laurinda. I had not seen her for a long time but she had a sparkle and a zest for life that will be sorely missed. She also had a body of knowledge and a commitment to making the world a more accessible place for people who are blind and visually impaired. She will be sorely missed by all of us who knew her. She lit up any room she was in and struggled long and hard to beat what eventually took her from us! We need more people who sparkle, and must lament when such a brilliant light goes out.

-- Paul Edwards, Miami, Fla.

For those of us in Maryland and in particular our local chapter, we are all grieving over this loss. Laurinda was such a special person; her warmth and sincerity were genuine. She cared deeply for those of us who needed assistance from time to time and was always there for a pep talk. Her husband Chip and mother Sally always attended our chapter meetings with Laurinda and did so much to care for her over the last 6 months. When I think of Laurinda, I will remember a classy lady who cared for others and made everyone she met feel special.

-- Pat Sheehan, Silver Spring, Md.

Laurinda was another person whom I considered to be brilliant and a real mentor. I loved getting to talk with her sometimes when I would call the Access Board. I usually asked for her whether it was really one of her major areas I was calling about or not. I have not kept in touch with her over the past several years, but the memories of her are something I cherish.

I also am one of many men who used to flirt with her incessantly. It was harmless fun, but I am getting frustrated at so many wonderful women I used to flirt with expiring. They need to stop doing that.

Yes, I have to put a little humor into the good memories. I think that is important, but seriously, losing Laurinda and Pat in the same month is very, very hard. I'll bet they are already teaming up to stir things up in their new location, though.

-- Michael Byington, Topeka, Kan.

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