July 1, 2002
My impression of Danielle was that she was a fabulous lightning bolt of the best energy. I first met her just in passing on the Boston-New York AIDS Ride in 1999. She slept on the floor of my hotel room, which I was sharing with Darci Palmquist. Ah, the beginning of many adventures.
When Danielle arrived in California and started working for the Avon 3-Day Breast Cancer Walk (I was working for the California AIDS Ride), it took us a while to figure out where we knew each other from. Finally, surrounded by coworkers, we pointed at each other and both said at the same time, "Oh yeah, we slept together!" It was one of those funny moments that we liked to replay afterwards, many a time.
Since we worked on different events, I didn't get to spend as much time with Danielle as I would have liked. But every moment I was in her presence was just great. As a result, I have some wonderfully clear moments of joy I can remember her by. I remember dancing with her at the post- 3-Day party. She was the only person there who actually knew how to dance! I remember her giving us some logistical information about how to coordinate the closing ceremonies of the walk and prefacing the talk by saying, "Okay, this is just like "Chicken Run". I remember a really nice lunch my partner and
I had with her at Chow. Mostly, I remember her fantastic soul, and that she was the kind of person that everyone just fell in love with right away.
When she was diagnosed with the tumor, I saw yet another side to her. I cannot imagine the strength it took to deal with what she dealt with. Not only was she strong, she was also so positive and upbeat. She was a fighter. I can only hope to be so brave.
Also, I was amazed at what an incredible support system she had. All of you, her friends and family. As I said before, she was a person whom everyone loved. This is so apparent. I also found out all these other wonderful things about her, like that she was a great rugby player, a top student, a world traveler. She lived her life to the fullest. What an inspiration.
I will always remember Danielle Drumke.
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