#1 NYT bestselling author Linda Lael Miller


My Cousin Kathy

Kathy Bannon passed away this weekend.

She was older than the rest of us, and growing up, she was pretty bossy. We used to tease her unmercifully for reading so many Harlequins (how ironic is that?) and she’d either dismiss us with a disdainful wave and a sniff–or chase us all over the farmyard. :)

Kathy loved to read, she was a fabulous cook and, in her day, she was very active in various amateur theater groups–I believe she actually performed in “Nunsense”, but probably lots of other things, too. She built and painted sets, helped make costumes, and directed.

She traveled all over the world–in fact, I think her adventurous nature prompted me to travel to faraway places with strange sounding names, as well. Just a few years ago, she spent Christmas in a boat on the Amazon, for Pete’s sake. Even as a young teacher, she’d work two jobs during a summer, save every cent, and spend the following summer exploring some exotic locale.

There was so much to admire and love about Kathy.

She was a remarkable teacher–English was her field–and some of her favorite authors were (besides moi, of course) Nora Roberts and Jayne Ann Krentz. We shared a passion for books, Kathy and I, and I will miss her recommendations and our discussions.

Yesterday, standing in Barnes and Noble, it hit me with a whallop. Kathy’s gone. How can that be?

I know she touched many, many young lives with her firm but humorous manner. She had a way of calling a person on b.s. without making them feel foolish–a real gift.

Kathy’s beloved cat, Rudy, I am grateful to say, is happily ensconced at Mary Ann’s, and has been for some time, since her mistress has been ill for a while. Mary Ann’s promise to care for Rudy no matter what meant a lot to Kathy–and Mary Ann keeps her promises. (Rudy stayed here with me for a long time, but my cats, especially Cha Cha, picked on her too much. At Mary Ann and Larry’s place, she is the only kitty.)

For now, Kathy, good-bye.
I’ll miss you, big-time.
And I’ll see you again some day.

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