In working on my blog today I was hunting down a website called Mandarin Design and an old online friend, Michelle Goodrich. Michelle's site had all sorts of codes for free to use on your blog or website...a site designers heaven. Michelle taught you the how to do's of creating a better site of your own with all of her knowledge. I discovered her website way back around 1998 when I was first building my website and trying to promote it. I wanted to leave a banner link on the links I was creating to my website and Michelle had a code to create a really nice banner. I had problems with it as I was still very much learning "computereeze" and contacted Michelle for advice. Michelle helped me figure it out and we kept in touch. She liked the site I had made and offered more help. We sent emails to each other and eventually she bought some of my notecards with horses I had drawn....or I might have just gave them to her for all of her help. Michelle also used my website in an article she had written for her website and offered a free link to my site in return. Naturally, I used the banner above to link to Michelle's website from mine.
It has been years since I last spoke to Michelle or had been to her website. While looking for it today I found that her site was offline and that she had passed away back in June of 2006. Terrible would be an understatement of describing how I felt. I spent the last hour or so reading through various blogs of the other people Michelle had helped over the years. Michelle's generosity was above and beyond that of most people. The closest I ever came to meeting Michelle was when she and her husband came down to see the Long Beach Grand Prix...back in the 90's. I only found out because I was trying to contact her with yet another problem or to ask a question and she mentioned they had just returned from that trip. So at one time we were just 30 miles away from actually meeting each other.
I feel bad that it took me so long to find out she had passed away from cancer, breast cancer I believe....You know, the thing about the internet is you have so many people you can meet in various ways, but more importantly, is that they are all very much real people. Michelle was as real and down to earth as you could get. Willing to share her knowledge which is the most beautiful thing about the internet. Beautiful things come from beautiful people. Michelle epitomized what the world of the Internet could be to all of us...a place to share, learn and teach without always expecting something in return for it. Helping your fellow man is always good karma. I will very much miss my friend Michelle.