Kathy and Junior

My friend Kathy Johnson made her decision that it was time to leave.  She died, by choice,  early Thursday morning.  I know it was early. I received an email message from her at 12:30 a.m and we found her body at 6 :20 a.m.

She decided to end her life when her depression won out. The battle was over when she took her pistol with her to her car and used it.


Ironically, just two weeks ago  our veterinarians had borrowed the same pistol to euthanize a horse with a broken leg.  That was traumatic too, but – as with Kathy—it ended the agony of pain.

All the warning signs were there, just as we read about them in novels and news reports.  In her final email to me, she wrote,   “Donna, nothing I can say will ease your anger or pain, but I know you would want for me the things I would want for myself. “

She was so right on about so much….but no, I never would want this. Never.  Kathy, you were so very wrong on this one, Girl!

Then, because humor was part of what and who she was, she added:

“You are everything I wanted to be, minus the kid/husband thing. You know how I feel about you and, no, everybody, we are not girlfriends. (Donna told me to write that).”   

Reading it made me laugh and I knew that her humor was meant to soften the mental pain I would surely feel. This time she was right.

There is still much to happen ahead of us before we say a final goodbye.  Kathy will be cremated on Tuesday, her ashes placed in the pauper’s section of the Granada cemetery as she requested.

Her Sandinista flag will leave the doorway in her house to join her on her grave.  Political differences will be laid to rest along with Kathy.

On Wednesday, we will honor our friend at her favorite Granada bar, Kelly’s, toasting and sharing so many memories of good times together that they are beyond counting.

Her home companion, Spotty the cat, is safe now with his vet who is Kathy’s dear friend, Dr. Marielena Solorzarno. Kathy dearly loved Spotty.  The fact that she would leave him behind in this world was proof that her desperation was so strong.  We needed to know this.

Kathy and Donna’s cats Fellini and Dolce Vita

And so Kathy moved on.  She knew it was okay to go.


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kathy Adams
    Jun 17, 2012 @ 21:59:00

    Donna, I am so sorry to hear of this loss….my best to you. You are a great friend! I am sure she cherished your friendship very much.


  2. Linda K. Johnson
    Jun 18, 2012 @ 07:51:19

    My sister will be loved and missed forever.She was such a significant part of my childrens’ lives; Aunt Kathy worshipped Morgan and Jackson, giving them more than she will ever know. I will never believe that every part of her wanted to die. Just not enough. She emailed me up to 2:30 a.m. June 14th. She said she was “sorry as much as i love you” . Everything possible was done to stop her. I couldn’t. She took a part of me with her and she left so much with me. We had so much fun hiding pain with laughter. And music. And love. Really. Peace, Kathy.I will never forget to ” make you an angel that flies from Montgomery”.


    • donna tabor
      Jul 04, 2012 @ 17:07:31

      Linda, A simple comment from Kathy a few days before she died: “Linda is such a good sister.” She loved you.


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Donna and Friend

Donna Tabor blogs about life in Nicaragua.

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