“When you are in receipt of this letter, I will have already lost my battle to ovarian cancer.” So began a letter written by Brenda Schmitz, a mother of four who had passed away in 2011. A month before she died, Brenda gave the letter to a friend and asked her to keep it a secret until her husband, David, had found love again, at which point the friend was instructed to mail the letter to Des Moines radio station Star 102.5. Why the radio station? Because every year, Star partners with local businesses to grant listeners’ Christmas wishes, and Brenda had some very specific wishes in mind for her husband, his new wife-to-be, and their family. Here’s an excerpt of her beautiful letter:
“My reason for writing is this. I have a wish. I have a wish for David, the boys, and the woman and her family if she has kids also. I want them to know I love them very much and they always feel safe in a world of pain. I was hoping that one small act you all could do for me can change and help their lives forever and they know I am with them always.
First for David’s new lifelong partner. A day or better yet a weekend of pampering in all aspects of her life. Hair, makeup, body massage, clothes, shopping, spa or weekend getaway. Whatever. She deserves it. Being a step-mother to all those boys and especially giving lil’ Max a ‘mother’s love’ that only she can give. Make her smile and know her efforts are truly appreciated from me. Perseverance will prevail. Thank you, I love you, whoever you are. Talk to me — you are heard.
For the family, a magical trip somewhere where they all can enjoy their company and companionship as a family and create those memories that will be with them forever. Finally the cancer doctors at Mercy Hospital and nurses of 8 south. A night out full of drinks, food, and fun for all they do everyday for the cancer patients they encounter.”
You can see the full text of the letter here. Thanks to the generosity of the radio station and donations from local businesses, all of Brenda’s Christmas wishes were made a reality. The cancer doctors and nurses were treated to a night out on the town, David’s fiance Jane received her much-deserved pampering session, and the whole family is going to Disney World. Watch David’s reaction to his late wife’s selfless wishes in the video above. What an amazing story.