Debi Austin passed away earlier this morning
A short while ago I was informed that Debi Austin passed away earlier this morning.
Debi was a guardian angel for Orange County and came down here many times, over the years, to help with our efforts to teach tobacco use prevention.
Some say, “Her Public Service Announcements were perhaps the most effective PSA’s ever made.” Debi has often been credited with helping more people to stop smoking, and countless others from ever starting, than few other advocates.
While Debi will be missed by so many people who loved her, her presence will always be felt in this arena that meant so much to her.
Hi to All,
I am writing to let you know that my sister, Deborah (Debi) Austin lost her 20 year battle with cancer yesterday, February 22, at 12:11 pm. She went home to be with her Lord and Saviour where she now is at peace. Many of you may not have known that she was a Christian, but a little over a year ago, shortly after our mother’s death, she placed her trust and faith in Jesus Christ to save her from her sins. So I can say with certainty, that she is in a better place and resting in the arms of her Saviour who loved her and gave His live for her.
For those who may not have known what was happening in Debi’s life recently, I will give a little history. Last April Debi was diagnosed with tongue cancer. She began chemo in June which was going well until her port became infected. In July she spent 2 weeks in the hospital with raging infections. In August they stopped chemo because of her weakened condition from the infections and began radiation. She completed radiation treatments in October. In August she was admitted to a care facility because she was unable to walk due to her weakened condition. She came home in December only to be sent back to care facility after another bout with infection that had hospitalized her for a week. She was placed under hospice care but removed from that after 3 weeks. Hospice is great for some but was not for Debi. Unfortunately the effects were not reversible; she had slipped too far. She slipped into eternity with a few of her loved ones by her side, Joy her niece, Stan Leibovitz her very special friend, and myself. Her Pastor Dennis Chapman and dear friend Wilma Pipolo had also spent time with her that morning and said there good-byes. About 15 wonderful Valley Presbyterian Hospital personel performed cardiac pulmonation in an effort to save her life, to them we give our heartfelt thanks. All of them left the room in tears, saying “She was a fighter.” AND she was a fighter to the very end.
Debi is survived by her sister Jamie Marshall of Portland, OR, sister Deena White and niece Joy White of Canoga Park, CA, brother and sister-in-law Jim and Deonne Gardner of Camp Verde, AZ, and niece Christy Gardner (and husband Steve) of Camp Verde, AZ, and you her many friends. She will be missed by all. She leaves a big hole in many of our hearts and lives.
Please feel free to send this to any of your contacts that may not be listed who knew Debi. I simply went through Debi’s email address book and sent to everyone on it. Many of you I do not know. If you have received this in error, I am sorry. If you receive this more than once, I am sorry; Debi had many duplicates and I tried hard to catch them but may have missed some. I apologize for any who have been left out and hope someone who receives this will pass it on. I will not be sending out personal messages so please forgive me for the way I am notifying you. I will try and answer any subsequent emails as time will permit for those who may want to send a response.
It is my request that you please not send flowers. Please let the flowers live. Any personal messages you care to send can be mailed to Deena White, 8821 Owensmouth Ave Apt 18, Canoga Park, CA 91304 Thank you for being a part of Debi’s life.
Love to All,