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December 8, 2013

Abigail Smith sends her final goodbye through online video

DUNCAN — Though a community is grieving this weekend over the loss of Abigail Smith, those who knew her the best, know she is free from the pain of cancer.

Abigail was diagnosed in early 2012, with Synovial Cell Sarcoma, but “won” her battle early Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013. Some people may not see her death as a win, but Abigail, 24, never wavered in her mission to live life to its fullest. She always exuded the positive message of being a survivor.

In early November, she had affirmed she was ready because the pain was so great at that time. Many people didn’t realize just how much the pain was, because she never really showed that struggle to the world. She always kept a smile on her face. In the last few months, much of Duncan began to discover who Abigail was, even though she had lived here her entire life. Some may ask, what makes her different from so many other young women who battle cancer.

For many, she became a beacon of hope, helping a community find good again in its darkest hour as it reeled from evil over two tragic events this past summer.

Abigail didn’t shy away from the word “evil” because she said that God was using evil to overcome.

While she’s become known to the world as “Amazing Abby” through a Facebook page, her brother, Amos, describes her as brave and bold. And that is how her family and friends love to describe her.

On Saturday, Abigail’s mission to make an impact on people, continued as word spread through social media about her death. She didn’t want people to know her only for photography or even only for the suffering of cancer.

Abigail spent the last two years of her life traveling and ministering to thousands of people, many of them youth. It was something she was destined to do. She is the daughter of Ron and Betty Smith, and sister to Andrew, Amos, Adam and little David. She was more than just another member of their family. She was her mom’s best friend. She was her brothers and father’s best friend. During a visit with her in early November, she laughed one day and said she had lots of best friends. “They all like to think I am “their only” best friend,” she said about all her friends. Which was quite OK by her, because she said, how many people are lucky enough to have so many “best friends.”

She said in her final video blog that even if she had been a missionary, she probably couldn’t have touched as many people as she did.

After undergoing surgery to remove a growing tumor, only to learn months later the cancer had returned and was spreading through her petite frame, she made a decision to live life as naturally as possible. She opted to not undergo more radiation or chemotherapy.

“There is no doubt in my mind that God gave me the grace and strength needed for every moment that I didn’t think I could get through,” she said in one of her earlier public journal posts.

In her last public video, which was posted Saturday by her brothers, it became obvious to the world that she was just like anyone else struggling to understand why she wasn’t healed.

“Miracles are a temporary fix,” she said. She didn’t ask to become famous, but she did find that she was rich and not in a monetary manner.

“Each friendship has been so rich and full,” she said.

For Abigail, probably the best lesson she could leave behind, is a message to anyone who has someone terminal in their lives is to just be there for the person. To make each moment count.

The family will have a private burial service, but a public memorial service will be held at Ray of Hope Church. The date and time will be announced at a later time. Condolences can be sent to the family through online avenues, including Amazing Abby on Facebook. Abby’s final video message can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/81277084.

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