Last week we learned with great sorrow and astonishment that one of our dearest friends and most talented coworkers, Ms. Evelena Mauldin, had passed. In her absence, sadness and her memory remain with us, in place of her warmth, kindness, and ever-present smile.
For the thirty-five years Evelena worked with us, she never ceased from making the courtyard, or wood shop, or offices resound laughter. To know her was to know a truly genuine, and wholly kind person, a hard worker, a caring mother, and a dedicated friend.
On Monday, Chris told me the story of Ms. Evelena's coming to work with us, thirty five years ago. While Ramsey was driving down the street, he came a cross two men standing in a truck, half filled with wood, parked by an old house. He watched them, and saw a long timber descend from above into their hands, looked up and saw a young lady handing down wood from the roof. He went up to the two men and asked them who the lady was. "That's my wife," her husband, proudly replied. Ramsey immediately told him "I'm going to hire her."
Since then Evelena could be found sorting the mill and courtyard, denailing boards with the skill and strength of a handful of men, or preparing our shop for events, in a long and flowing skirt, unafraid of the nails and snags. After all of this, she found time to entertain guests, or even sing at our fundraiser for Humane Society, and always would greet anyone and everyone cheerfully.
Although memory and strength were daunting, it is Ms. Evelena's happy greeting that I remember most.
It was unbelievable to hear that she had passed from us. She was only 65, but worked on and on, never showing signs of weariness, always happy to be here.
If anyone deserves a restful, peaceful life after death, it is Ms. Evelena. We would like to offer her our gratitude for the kindness and joy she spread, and offer our condolences to her loving friends and family. We know she is still spreading joy and kindness, and that she remains within us.