Elizabeth Grace Kunce Memorial
On October 9th, 2003, we lost an incredible young woman. Beth Kunce was on the verge of graduating college and beginning her life when it was suddenly and unexpectedly taken from her. The past nine years have been heart wrenching, confusing, and difficult for those of us close to her. However, now it is time—past time—to honor her and carry on her spirit. We lost Beth to the number one killer in women—heart disease. It wasn’t congenital or a result of poor lifestyle choices. To the best of our knowledge, it was a virus that attacked her heart. Regardless of the cause, the result was a sudden cardiac event that led to her death.
During Beth’s 22 years, she made an impact on everyone who crossed her path. At the very least, she made you laugh. She always wanted everyone to be included in a positive way. Her fun loving attitude expanded well beyond her friends and family. Beth, maybe without even realizing it, was invested in helping others over the course of her entire life. Whether she was busy entertaining the kids who frequently requested her as a baby-sitter, teaching sports camps and swimming lessons at the Bartlett Park District, assisting mentally challenged women maintain their independence in a group home, or chaperoning a 22 year-old with Down Syndrome to a WWE wrestling match, she knew how to effectively interact with people of all ages and abilities. During her last days, she was interning at a state hospital working as a recreational therapist with emotionally and behaviorally disordered adolescents. From everything we heard, she had established strong relationships with these children in the month and a half that she spent with them. She made a significant difference in these and countless other lives.