In Memory of Lisa

Lisa was blessed with a love of knowledge and possessed a self-confidence that led her to an adventurous life. While a student at Trinity High School she developed an interest in languages and was an exchange student in French-speaking Canada. She enjoyed track & field and she participated in band, jazz band, chorus, and bell choir.

Yes, she loved music! Not as a passive listener but as an engaged performer. She spent three summers rehearsing and performing with the Reading Buccaneer Drum and Bugle Corp as a baritone horn player. Two of their seasons concluded with the group earning the DCA World Championship title. In college she continued her piano studies and was a vocal soloist in the Christmas concert her junior year.

Lisa attended Saint Francis University in preparation for her career as a Physician Assistant, where she earned her Masters Degree in only 4 years. She was described by one of her professors as “…mature, focused, and academically sharp” and “kind to her classmates and good spirited with the entire department”. He added, “Remembering Lisa is to remember her smile. She had a sparkle and a sense of happiness that was infectious. Lisa was a very special student that people remember fondly.”

As part of her undergraduate experience she traveled to Mexico to attend classes and volunteer at an orphanage. While there she met her future husband, Fernando. After their wedding in May of 2008, Lisa and Fernando began their life together in Texas, where she won the admiration, respect, and love of many colleagues and friends. Many at the hospital where she worked remarked about her superior clinical skills and her vast knowledge of medical practice. When they had a difficult case, they wanted Lisa in the room with them. They were truly amazed by her clinical knowledge. Even for obscure diagnoses, Lisa had the answer. She displayed an understanding well beyond that of most 22-year old PAs.

Always health conscience, when she became pregnant, Lisa was totally committed to taking care of both she and her baby. She was dedicated to eating properly, exercising (including yoga), and doing everything she knew, as a medical professional, to provide her baby with the best possible pre-natal care. Despite these efforts, something went terribly wrong. Near the
end of her pregnancy, very early in the morning while asleep, she began to have seizures. She was rushed to the hospital where they performed an emergency cesarean section. It was at that time her family learned that Lisa had suffered an AFE and was in grave condition. Soon afterward she was transported to a larger medical facility in Houston, but failed to recover.

The trauma of the delivery was experienced by her newborn daughter, Alicia, for she, too, was transferred to Houston, where she stayed at the Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital for several weeks. After being discharged from the hospital, Fernando and Alicia relocated to Pennsylvania to be near Lisa’s family.

No one can prepare for a moment such as this. It is one filled with the joy of a new birth and, at the exact same time, the sorrow of the loss of another; a vibrant young woman only 25 years of age; a wife, mother, daughter, sister, and so much more.