SGT, C Co, 319th MI BN, 525th Battlefield Surveillance BDE
01/22/2011, Homestead, FL
Hello Mike! I feel very selfish in asking you to draw a portrait of my beautiful daughter, SGT Amanda Older-Downing. I can only imagine the back log of requests you must receive on a daily basis. However, I am asking to be placed among those wanting your personal sketch of my loved one.
Where do I start about Amanda…. She was the biggest giver that I know. She loved to make others happy. Her beautiful soul shown through her eyes. They were so blue and full of life that they’d suck you in. Amanda (Mandy to me) loved to make people laugh. When she was stationed in Iraq, she made a little hand puppet to entertain her battle buddies with. Amanda was the epitome of a soldier. She came back from Iraq with a very rare cancer called Adrenal cortical carcinoma. 1 in 1.7 million get it and it’s so rare that there’s no cure for it.
A journalist from the Huffington Post wrote an incredible article on Amanda. I’ve attached the link below. The article captured her beauty inside and out. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/r-b-stuart/iraq-an-environmental-ces_b_480169.html
As Mandy’s mom, I have felt extremely blessed and very humbled to be her mom. I lived with my hero every day. I only wish I was half the giver, the compassionate person she was. I miss her more and more with each passing day. She wanted nothing more than to get well so she could get back to her battle buddies. She felt she let her family and the military down by getting sick. God had other plans for her. He needed his angel back. I am thankful I had her for 24 incredible years. I know when my time on this earth is through I will see her again.
Amanda and I were best friends….it’s been so hard without her to talk to. I don’t know if you can use any of the attached photos. I wanted you to see the love and life in her eyes. I hope one day to see one of your sketches of Amanda framed and hanging in our home. Please keep us in mind and I thank you so much for what you do.