I have never met Kendra Scott or her friend, Holley Kitchen, but I think we have a lot in common. I’ve seen enough photos to know that we each appreciate statement jewelry, selfies and the strength of friends that are so close that they feel like family. (Sometimes, it’s even better than family.) But, the thread that links us together feels more like a noose – we are strong women who faced the demon of metastatic breast cancer.
Meet families impacted by Inheritance of Hope!
Jake Anderson can’t describe his wife Becky without mentioning her smile, “You don't have to say anything else--you could just see her smile.” That smile was a window into how Becky lived with her metastatic breast cancer diagnosis amidst raising three young children.
According to Jake, Becky was always hopeful, and while he can't pinpoint exactly how she maintained her hope and faith, he does have a name for it, “I think if you knew her, well, there was a grace about her. She would put everyone else at ease,” he says. “It felt like everything was ok because she was ok. She made it easy for everybody and always looked on the bright side--right from the beginning. I think the word for her is grace,” he pauses, “and then, there was the smile.”
|Becky’s bright smile showed her love for life|
Luke Milligan, the middle child and only son of IoH Co-Founders Kristen and Deric Milligan, knows how much his mom loved him. Kristen made sure her presence and love would be felt through gifts, videos, and letters long after her premature death forced her to leave him at a formidable age.
The gifts that I have received from my Mom following her death have been of immeasurable value, but no more so than the ones I received from her while she was alive. The true value of her gifts have come from the knowledge that she was considering me and my future years before I was. The intentionality that she displayed as a mother is something I intend to replicate, whether or not I am diagnosed with a terminal cancer.
October 26th marks the seventh anniversary of when Inheritance of Hope Co-Founder Kristen Milligan passed away. In those seven years, her children have reached milestone birthdays, high school rites of passage, started driving, and two have gone off to college. Through changes and achievements, growing pains and successes, they have never felt far from their mother’s love, all because of the notes, gifts, videos and more that Kristen prepared while living with a terminal illness.
Originally posted on October 4, 2018, we honor Joni and the legacy she left for her family. Joni passed away in July 2019, but used her time to live purposefully and give back to others facing what she faced.
Joni Morris is one of the faces of Kendra Scott’s Holley Day. She also has metastatic breast cancer. Along with her teenage daughters Kendra and Rylee, Joni is raising awareness for Inheritance of Hope in order to give other families the gift that they themselves received. The Morrises attended an all-expenses-paid Inheritance of Hope Legacy RetreatⓇ to Orlando in March, where they met other families in which a parent has been diagnosed with a terminal illness, received tools for navigating the difficulties they face, and perhaps, most importantly, made lifelong memories together.
As a young widow raising five children, Andrea Albanese wants her late husband Jim to be remembered and acknowledged. “Culturally, we are afraid of grief and afraid to say the name of the person who passed away,” she laments. “People might drop off a casserole and run. But, I would say to please talk about my husband with my kids. They want to hear about their father. He is still part of our lives.”
And that is exactly why a special gift created just for Andrea made such an impression on her last October.
|Andrea and Jim shortly before he passed away|