Nelson County, Virginia
I tend to write in first person at times like these, so excuse that form on this occasion. As I awoke this morning here on our farm in Roseland, like most any other morning I scrolled through my Facebook timeline. I saw the red square indicating a message. It was from my friend Michelle Taylor of Beech Grove. She broke the news to me that we all knew was eventually coming. Sherri Brooks was gone.
Sherri had been battling cancer for the past 5 years. She was first diagnosed in May 2010. Ever since that day of diagnosis she was a fighter. And she never let the fear, the anguish, the battle, kill that smile of hers. Michelle told me just this morning she was smiling to the very end. She died peacefully at her home in Shipman with husband David (Nelson’s current sheriff) by her side, along with Michelle and other family.
Above our April 2011 story on Sherri Brooks’ battle against colon cancer that eventually took her life on Monday – July 20, 2015
I first met Sherri thourgh her husband David. I’d met David back in 2004 at the old Ashley’s Market in Greenfield. David was a deputy and told me he was running for sheriff eventually and wanted my support. It was through that campaign I met his wife Sherri. We became instant friends. What a spunky woman! Full of fire and so full of compassion at the same time. The one thing I remember the most about Sherri. She loved her husband. More than anything in this world she loved her husband. Often during her battle with cancer, she told me, “I am not worried about me, you worry about him. I’ll take care of me, you take care of him.” Even in the depth of cancer and facing what eventually came to be, she was worried about her husband. She faced this battle with courage and even laughter. Lots of laughter.
I’ve had to write several tributes since we started this magazine back in 2005. None of them are ever easy. It’s amazing how many people you can meet in 10 years and actually become friends. But Sherri was special. Very special. And she has special friends and family. They have all been by her side from day one of the diagnosis and I know they will be by David’s side in these very hard days ahead.
Words tend to fail me in these times. I am not a great writer even when it’s a different situation. But it’s hard to put it together in words when trying to write about a person as they were and after they have left us.
As a pilot, one of my favorite songs has always been Clouds by David Gates of Bread, in absence of words these lyrics say it best:
See the clouds adrift so far below
Ever changing as they come and go;
Makes me wonder why I’m up so high
When really I am down so low
Of all the wonders I was one allowed
I think that I would always choose a cloud,
Always bring my feelings right out loud,
Whether I’m ashamed or proud.
And on this airplane coming home to you,
Sometimes I think I’ve flown my whole life through,
My whole life through,
As I wing my way to you.
See the clouds, they’re giving life below
In colors that the canvass cannot show;
Keeping secrets no one else could know,
For I’m the one who told them so.
Now and then I get up close to you,
Like to stay, but I’m just passing through,
So I’ll have to say goodbye,
Until next time I fly.
Bread – Clouds Lyrics | MetroLyrics
So until we all meet again Sherri, goodbye. It was a good run and you showed faith courage and that smile until the end.
RIP my friend.
Funeral announcement via Wells-Sheffield Funeral Home:
“Sherri Moyer Brooks departed this life on Monday, July 20, 2015.
She was born October 13, 1964 to the late James “Junior” Moyer and Nannie Mae Moyer.
She met her soul mate, David Brooks in 1979 and married him in 1984.
Besides her husband, mother, and mother-in-law she is survived by six sisters; Hope Hite (Randy) of Faber, Renee Arnold (Bill) of Georgia, Linda Viar (Boonie) of Lovingston, Pat Wright (Dano) of Charlottesville, Helen Beasley (Michael) of Schuyler, Emma Ragland of Shipman and two sisters from another mother; Connie Miller (Ralph) of Afton and Michelle Taylor (Mike) of Beech Grove, 12nieces, 7 nephews, 16 great-nieces, 9 great-nephews and 2 great-great nephews, brother-in-law, Kenny Brooks of Amherst as well as a big loving extended family and many close friends.
Sherri believed God has a plan for us all and her motto was keep positive and life is good. She enjoyed spending time with her sista chicks, the beach, Jeeping and eating her Mama’s delicious food. She adored her husband and was thankful to have known and been shown great love as she was aware some people never have that in their lives. She now goes to join her Daddy and Billy Brooks and hopes to be remembered with love and laughter.
A funeral service will be held at 11:00 am on Thursday, July 23, 2015 at Calvary Baptist Church in Lovingston with Rev. Billy Coffey and Rev. James Rose officiating.
Interment will follow in the Davis Cemetery in Shipman.
The family will receive friends from 6-9 pm on Wednesday, July 22, 2015 at Calvary Baptist Church in Lovingston.
Arrangements by Wells/Sheffield Funeral Chapel of Lovingston (434) 263-4097.”