|Lisa Rezin (from left) with daughters Ashlee Rezin and Dawn Baxter.
It’s a five-hour drive from Detroit to Chicago. Yet Lisa Rezin would make the trip just to attend a school play featuring one of her nieces and nephews. Or go to the Shedd with her grandchildren. Or the beach. Or to take her family to the theater — she bought tickets for everybody to see “West Side Story” at the Lyric Opera in June.
That’s how she rolled.
“She used to say, ‘I’m your biggest fan,’” said Dawn Baxter, her older daughter. “She made everybody feel like that. Went to every event for her nieces and nephews. She really was their biggest fan.”
Her family will have to go to “West Side Story” without her. Lisa Rezin, age 64, died last Thursday from a particularly aggressive form of cancer, diagnosed in March.
Which is how she entered my world — her younger daughter, Ashlee Rezin, is an ace photographer at the Sun-Times. She asked me to help the family collect their thoughts for the obituary in the Detroit Free Press. I talked to Ashlee, Dawn and their father, Bobby, then wrote up my notes. As a creative effort, it was akin to taking three bowls of diamonds, scooping a few gems out of each and putting them in a fourth, larger bowl. It didn’t require any creativity or effort on my part to make the result sparkle.
Though as we spoke, there was something I really wanted to say, but managed to hold back. Shutting up is an art form, one that I have imperfectly mastered. One thought kept waving its hand in the back of my mind.
“You’re so lucky!”
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