in memorium, Laura Mercury
laurelinw on 02/20/2008
I am writing this letter on behalf of an extraordinary woman who died on February 8th 2008 after a 23 year battle with cancer. My aunt was the most kind, compassionate, fun-loving and truly individual person that I have ever known and, I can say without a shadow of a doubt that she was most definitely the number one KISS fan on the planet!
I’m 31 years old and my aunt, Laura Rhyann Mercury, was a fan before I was born… From the time I can remember, I was indoctrinated with the knowledge that KISS was the greatest band EVER and it was accepted as the norm that one could and should go to any lengths in order to see, hear, and/or experience anything and everything related to the band. Although she never had much money, my aunt chalked up countless hours camped out on sidewalks or hanging on the telephone and spent thousands of dollars to ensure that she didn’t miss out; at last count, she had seen KISS live 39 TIMES!!!
Last week, my cousin and I faced the daunting and emotional task of sorting through her things and what an experience that was! There was a set of metal trunks that travelled with her wherever she went and it was amazing when we finally got into them; an Aladdin’s cave of KISS memorabilia collected over the last 35 years ~ KISS banners, dolls, thermos flasks, trivia games, vintage T-shirts, posters, concert programs, guitar picks etc….
During the final week of my dear auntie’s life, the family and nurses worked together to ensure that she had her headphones in and rotated her entire collection of KISS music whenever we weren’t there whispering in her ear. Less than a week after she died, we had an intimate celebration of her life at the park and she would have laughed to see us dolled up in her vintage Kiss T-shirts (even my 80 year old grandmother!) and playing your music loud and proud! On behalf of all of my family, I just wanted to say thank you for all of the joy that you so clearly brought to my aunt for more than half of her lifetime. I just wanted you to know that you too have lost a woman worth remembering and I hope that you will always remember Laura Rhyann Mercury.