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Reflections on Eleven Years

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Every year your anniversary sneaks up on me, and every year, I think it will somehow be easier.  It never is.  The night before your anniversary I invariably think, this was the last time my life would ever be completely okay and untarnished.

Last night we went to see Chris Isaak in concert, and he didn’t play the first song of his I loved, Graduation Day.  Maybe just as well, as it always takes me back to that time period after your death, right when you were supposed to graduate college.  I can remember so vividly flying out to California and walking for you at your graduation ceremony.  They handed me your diploma and I thought, “well, you did it baby, just a little too late.”  I remember thinking those Graduation Day lyrics in my mind as I walked to the car in the rain.

Thinking of a time when everything was right. 
Thinking of a time with only you and I
Makes me sorry that it had to end that way
Learned my lesson now there’s nothing left to say, graduation day 

Your scholarships still go out, and it’s comforting to know that there’s a little bit of your influence still floating around out there.  You have three nieces growing up, as kids do.  The only one you got to meet was Mackenzie. I wish you could see her now.  She’s a strong little lady, and confident, too, a quality that eluded us both as girls.  She was just a baby when you died, so as she gets older and older, it’s a reminder of just how long you’ve been gone.  You never met Marissa, but she is most like you in personality:  sweet, gentle and compassionate.  And Ella Bean looks a bit more like you every day.  I wish they could have known you.


2012 Spring Application Recipients

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We received several quality applicants for this semester.  In addition to Charlotte Whitmore, our incumbent recipient, we are pleased to welcome Lucia Williams from the University of Texas – Austin to the TDKF family.  

Every time we receive an application, it is a whole new story of hope.  The hardest part of any board of directors meeting is re-reading that 3rd runner up application.  During this economy, our stock portfolio has been seriously undervalued, which limits our scope of giving.  Our third runner up this semester was Deana H.  We would be happy to help this nice lady (with the same name as my sister) pursue her academic dreams, if you’d like to help.

Donations can be sent to:

The Deana Kendrick Foundation, P.O. Box 14146, Springfield MO  65814

I will mail you a receipt for your donation for calendar year 2012!


Email updates

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It appears that our email address is not being forwarded.  In the interim, please email with applications or references.  We are extending our deadline until August 31, to accomodate this inconvenience.

2012 Fall 2012 Scholarship Applications

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It’s the last week for scholarship applications for the Fall 2012 Semester.  You may email them to

Spring 2012 TDKF Recipient

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The Deana Kendrick Foundation is pleased to announce that we renewed a scholarship for Ms. Charlotte Whittmore for the spring 2012 semester.  Ms Whittmore is a student at Northwest Arkansas Community College.  Applications for fall of 2012 are due on August 17, 2012.

Ten Years of Loss

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It seems incomprehensible that it’s been 10 years since I got the phone call that you’d died. Incomprehensible, in part, because at the time it seemed beyond the realm of possibility that I could go on living without you.  I didn’t realize at the time that losing you would be ongoing, because we lose people in tiny increments, feeling additional bits of loss along the way as I see things that you would have liked, or things that remind me of you.  In that sense, it’s never over.

The world has changed a lot since you’ve left us.  I think of how we could have stayed in touch with Facebook and Skype. But the fundamentals have stayed the same: family and friends.  It’s always painful when I hear people talk about their sisters.  The reality is that no one wants to talk or hear about my sister, because she is dead, and it makes people uncomfortable.  I don’t warm up to people the way I once did, and I suspect this is a permanent change.  Some things that are broken can never be fixed.

I hope you find it amazing that we have given 36 scholarships away with your life insurance money.  I remember you and I sitting in coffee shops on our various trips to Vegas, talking about our dreams.  Never in our flights of fancy did we imagine this ending, but it turned out pretty noble and I think you would like that.  I’ve learned to expect neither too little nor too much from life; it simply is.

For many years I thought I would never be truly happy again.  I cried rivers when you left, and I still feel robbed of your presence.  Things will never be the same of course, but life did go on well for me.  There is a little blonde headed girl running around my house who crinkles her nose when she laughs – so reminiscent of the aunt she never knew.  She laughs a lot.  She’s a great reminder that nothing is permanent; we are all here for such a short time, and our main purpose is to nurture the next generation.


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We have taken down our old website, added the scholarship application, and the F.A.Q. page.  Our deadline is August 16th, postmarked or emailed.  Also, you can now reach us at

These changes were made to maximize our resources and budget more for our core mission, to provide scholarships.