A Beacon of Light to White Ashes

By Lloyd Yamada, CFP®

Today I learned that a daughter of a friend was killed in Las Vegas. I had not met nor had known her daughter, but when my friend told me about the tragedy, I was stunned. I did not know what to say or how to feel at that moment; I was numb.

We can offer deeply felt condolences and prayers to those who are affected, but most of us will never understand what my friend is feeling. When we talked, she was sad but not angry. She told me how her daughter was a beacon of light and that she will treasure the memories of her always.

I am so proud to be her friend. I know she is hurting inside and trying to be strong outside. Her pain may never leave her, but my hope is that memories of her daughter will provide her comfort now and forever.

From a passage called On the White Ashes: “Whether I go before others, or others go before me; whether it be today, or it be tomorrow, who is to know? Those who leave before us are as countless as the drops of dew. Though in the morning we may have radiant health, in the evening we may return to white ashes.”

To my beloved friend, your precious daughter is still a beacon of light even as she is transformed into white ashes.