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In loving memory...


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Sunday morning, my best friend and a fellow amusement park fan, passed away at the age of 81. She was my mom, Maxine.

 

My love of amusement parks goes back to summer afternoon and evenings in the late 1960's when my mom and dad would load me in the car and we would head to Old Coney or LeSourdesville Lake (aka Americana). Along with my older brother and sister (and eventually their spouses and my nieces and nephews) we made memories that will last a lifetime.

 

Mom loved amusement parks. She never rode a coaster wilder than the Teddy Bear (aka Scooby Doo/Beastie/FOC), but she loved a lot of the old classic rides. TumbleBug, the Whip, Cuddle Up, Flying Scooters, etc. She also loved the live shows, games (skeeball and Fascination were favorites) and especially fireworks.

 

Mom pretty much had a Kings Island pass every year since they were introduced, and she had a senior pass in her desk drawer at the nursing home, just waiting to be processed. Unfortunately, her health just did not allow it.

 

Her park credits included Old Coney, KI, Americana, Fantasy Farm, Cedar Point, Sea World of Ohio, Busch Gardens Williamsburg, Holiday World and WDW.

 

Our last theme park trip was in June of 06 when she went with Sammi and I to Holiday World. Even though she was in a wheelchair and required oyxgen therapy at night, we spent two full days there and mom rode the antique cars, Gobbler Getaway, and Thunder Rapids 3 times! She even put her swimsuit on and dipped her feet in the kiddie area at Splashin Safari.

 

In preparing photo collages to take with us to the visitation and funeral, my niece and I assembled an entire "salute to theme park visits". Mom on the carousel at Winterfest, mom playing skeeball at Holiday World last summer, and one of my favorites, mom with Minnie at her birthday dinner at the Liberty Tree Tavern at WDW back in 1997.

 

We made so many great memories that I will carry my whole life. For all of you out there, especially you younger "kids", if you are fortunate enough to have parents who love to go to the parks, even if they don't ride the wildest thrill rides, take them with you when you can. Someday it will mean so much more to you.

 

I would like to share a few pictures.....

 

Thanks for letting me share this with all of you......

 

Shari "I'm a 40 year old orphan now" Shoufler

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Still going, even in a wheelchair....

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Holday World, last summer

2058154450_MaxandShariKI1972.jpg.b28196a6297eb2f383d50d9637d5125e.jpg

Kings Island opening season 1972

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Sorry to hear about your loss, Shari.

 

Even though my family aren't thrill seekers, probably some of my favorite and most sentimental park trips came from my parents. I miss the days of when I was 11 or 12, every week my Dad, sister, sometimes one of my friends, and I would drive up to BGT and ride the rides until we had to head back at 4. If it were not for my dad, chances are I would still be a wuss.

 

If my parents had time and were willing to go, I would like to take them up to WDW one last time someday. They're not thrill seekers, but drat, they're my parents!

 

Someday it will mean so much more to you indeed.

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Shari, that was really sweet. I'm so sad to hear of your loss, but so proud of you posting this in her memory. These pics remind me so much of my grandma, who was responsible for countless visits to WDW, and probably the biggest reason I grew up appreciating the place as much as I do.

 

My prayers are with you and your family.

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I am really sorry for your loss. I can relate with you about the beginnings of going to theme parks. My mom and my 2 sisters and myself always went to WDW every year since I was six years old. My older sister passed away almost a year ago from breast cancer, but she also loved going to theme parks especially BGT. She left behind 3 teenagers who also love theme parks so I try to go often with them and my daughter and carry on, I guess you could say, a tradition thanks to my Mom. Again, I am really sorry for your loss and you are in my prayers.

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Shari,

 

I am sorry for your loss. My mom was also a huge coaster fan. She would ride anything. When The Beast opened she rode it. The entire course of the ride she was screaming "never again, never again" as soon as we would leave the ride she would want to ride again. She even rode the original Mister Twister with a cast on her leg when we went to Denver in 1979. She stopped riding the next year after neck surgery, but still enjoyed going to the parks. My dad even took her to Disney World for her 60th birthday.

 

She passed away a few years ago, so I know how you feel.

 

d

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I'm sorry about your loss... I don't really know what else to say...

 

However, even dead, your mother probably wants nothing more than for you to be happy. Just remember the good times with your mother at theme parks, and everywhere else.

 

-Mike

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Shari, I'm so terribly sorry for your loss, but I do think it's wonderful that you have the strength to post this tribute, it really made me think. It's awesome that your mum shared your passion for parks and continued to visit them even when she couldn't ride anymore! Very cool. I know she'll be very much missed, but I'm glad she passed a passionate interest in something down to you, which I know you're passing down to your daughter now too!

 

I enjoyed reading your memories, thank you so much for sharing, and my thoughts are with you and your family. It's a cliché, and you'll never stop missing her (neither should you), but time's a great healer.

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I'm so sorry for what you've been through. I've never had a family member lost [that I can remember, at least], so I have no idea how hard it is to lose your mother. However, like GMAN962 said, think of it like she'll be with you for the rest of your life, she'll never be away from you.

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So sorry for your loss, Shari. Your mom really seemed to look happy at the parks, even in her older years. She can take pride in knowing she raised such a good daughter who loves parks as much as she did.

 

I know I'm the way I am because of my mom and grandmother taking me to the local parks every year since I was very little. Heck, my first coaster was with my grandmother when I was like 3! It's nice to remember all the good things your parents did, this was a nice tribute you've done for her. I'm sure she'd appreciate it.

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Wow, those are some great memories, Shari. And I can't get over how awesome that picture is of her playing skeeball at that age. I'm really sorry about your loss. I wish I was better at this kind of stuff, but I just have to agree with everybody else, and think about the great memories you have. It sounds like you have some pretty good ones. Thanks for sharing.

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^^ I definitely intend to.... while I am changing my plans up a bit, I am still taking off next Friday to head to Holiday World. Mom really loved going there the past two years, and I know she will be with Sammi and I in spirit.

 

Thank you ALL for your kind words. We just got home from the funeral and luncheon after, and I am doing pretty good. I gave the eulogy, which I worked on a practiced all week, and I was very proud of it. When I concluded it, even though we were in Church, I got a round of applause and everyone said how I had done a beautiful job honoring my mother and asked me to email them copies of it. I was so pleased, because I considered that my final gift to her.

 

Shari

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I'd also like to extend my condolences. This is a wound that never fully heals, but that you can eventually learn to accept.

 

My mom is still a minor league theme park enthusiast. I've dragged her to Holiday World and Dollywood. I even got her to ride The Raven and The Legend, but she chickened out on the Voyage. She still occasionally taunts me about the credits she has that I do not, like the Screechin' Eagle at Americana and some obscure woodie in Maryland that got torn down in the 60s.

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Sunday morning, my best friend and a fellow amusement park fan, passed away at the age of 81. She was my mom, Maxine.

 

My love of amusement parks goes back to summer afternoon and evenings in the late 1960's when my mom and dad would load me in the car and we would head to Old Coney or LeSourdesville Lake (aka Americana). Along with my older brother and sister (and eventually their spouses and my nieces and nephews) we made memories that will last a lifetime.

 

Mom loved amusement parks. She never rode a coaster wilder than the Teddy Bear (aka Scooby Doo/Beastie/FOC), but she loved a lot of the old classic rides. TumbleBug, the Whip, Cuddle Up, Flying Scooters, etc. She also loved the live shows, games (skeeball and Fascination were favorites) and especially fireworks.

 

Mom pretty much had a Kings Island pass every year since they were introduced, and she had a senior pass in her desk drawer at the nursing home, just waiting to be processed. Unfortunately, her health just did not allow it.

 

Her park credits included Old Coney, KI, Americana, Fantasy Farm, Cedar Point, Sea World of Ohio, Busch Gardens Williamsburg, Holiday World and WDW.

 

Our last theme park trip was in June of 06 when she went with Sammi and I to Holiday World. Even though she was in a wheelchair and required oyxgen therapy at night, we spent two full days there and mom rode the antique cars, Gobbler Getaway, and Thunder Rapids 3 times! She even put her swimsuit on and dipped her feet in the kiddie area at Splashin Safari.

 

In preparing photo collages to take with us to the visitation and funeral, my niece and I assembled an entire "salute to theme park visits". Mom on the carousel at Winterfest, mom playing skeeball at Holiday World last summer, and one of my favorites, mom with Minnie at her birthday dinner at the Liberty Tree Tavern at WDW back in 1997.

 

We made so many great memories that I will carry my whole life. For all of you out there, especially you younger "kids", if you are fortunate enough to have parents who love to go to the parks, even if they don't ride the wildest thrill rides, take them with you when you can. Someday it will mean so much more to you.

 

I would like to share a few pictures.....

 

Thanks for letting me share this with all of you......

 

Shari "I'm a 40 year old orphan now" Shoufler

 

awwww.

 

I'm not really religious anymore, but I'm sure your mom was an awesome person and will be missed by those who love her.

 

These are tough times, I'm sure, but stay strong and I hope everything works out.

 

-Amanda "I tried to say cool stuff" V.

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Shari- I am so sorry for your loss. Your tribute is beautiful, and I'm certain that your eulogy was even better.

 

My father instilled my love of theme parks. He's 76 now, and his health is declining. I'm hoping to get him back down to FL (he lives in MA) to visit WDW again with my kids, before it's too late.

 

You just gave me a needed kick in the butt.

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