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Friday, October 6, 2023
Starts at 11:00am
The day that Tasha was born in Longmont, CO, June 17, 1979 Father’s Day, was a day of extreme weather on the front range of CO.
From that day forward, for all of the days of her life, Tash would need the protection of the armor of God. As the Apostle Paul said in Ephesians 6:10, “…be strong in the Lord and His mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” Throughout some childhood hurdles, a difficult marriage and divorce, and many years wrought with serious illness, she relied on God through all her life trials. She saw what He did for her at every turn of her life, including some true miracles – not the least of which was the vision of her guardian angel in her hospital room during one of her many life/death crises.
During her late teen and early adult years, Tasha was active in 4H where she showed the pigs she raised – aptly named Miss Piggy and Squeaky. She was involved in APHA horse shows where she competed in Western Pleasure and barrel racing. She also loved fishing and camping, and working on ATV’s, tractors, etc…. not bothering if she got her hands dirty in the process.
Tash was good with people and as a young adult ran an RV park in Douglas, WY; the front desk of a Motel 8 in SD; and she worked in western clothing retail, which she loved (no doubt due to her fondness for “bling” and a lifelong passion for shopping herself).
Even though Tasha couldn’t have any children of her own, she spent 10 years of her early life selflessly raising two step-children. Tash demonstrated Jesus’ words as written in Matthew 25:40, “Whatever you do for the least of these, you do for me.” She was a generous person who loved giving a lot more than receiving, and she was extremely kind and soft-hearted toward people and animals.
And Tasha LOVED her animals! From the aforementioned Miss Piggy and Squeaky, to her several horses, and a multitude of dogs that she often ended up adopting--to Nita, her mother’s chagrin. Tasha LOVED her Mom, Nita, deeply with heartfelt gratitude for her unending love, advocacy on Tasha’ behalf, and unstoppable care every single time Tash needed it throughout her short 44 years of life.
Illness began to take a serious toll on Tasha due to a genetic liver failure. In 2006, at the age of 27, she received a life-saving, but less-than-optimal liver transplant at the Minnesota Mayo Clinic. Over the next seven years, because it was a flawed liver it began to fail also, leading to a 2nd liver transplant in SLC in 2013, when Tash was 34 years old.
A blessing and a curse, transplants save and extend lives, yet the required lifetime anti-rejection medicine can negatively impact other body functions and organs. From diminishing immune systems, and deteriorating bones, teeth and kidneys, these all occurred with Tash. A long-time potential recipient for a kidney transplant that never happened, Tash became an ongoing 3x/week dialysis patient. Quite a few hurdles for one tiny girl to endure.
Yet, as she was less and less able to do the things of her younger years and to live an unencumbered life, she sought out new interests and hobbies like turning cups, gnome making, and other crafts; cooking (that puts us all to shame!), and quilting. She was a perfectionist in all these things she did, turning out inspiring, beautiful work – especially with her quilting. With each thing she did, she always gave it her all until she couldn’t because of some health complication or other and then she would move on to learn and do something else she was capable of doing.
Despite her travails, Tash never lost hope, was extremely positive, and still sought out happiness every day. She maintained an active “bucket list” on which the next item was to travel to the Kentucky Derby next year so that she could wear the big hats! I think a return to her fondness for “bling.”
In conclusion, Tasha was the real life “little engine that could” – “I think I can, I think I can, I know I can, I know I can.” She never gave up on anybody or anything, including herself.
The last thing I wrote to Tasha in a card that was undeliverable to her during her most recent hospitalization was “you are one of the bravest people we know and we greatly admire how plucky and positive you are. You are one very, very brave girl. Just remember that God is with you at all times, no matter what.” God was always with her on this earth and now she has gone safely to Him. Just as Lance, her grandma and grandpa Heng, and Grandpa Bishop were there to welcome her home, so shall she be amongst those to greet all of us when it is our time to join them. Till then, she will be loved in our hearts and memories and truly missed!
Graveside services for Tasha Heng Friday, October 6, 2023 at 11 AM at the Maeser Fairview Cemetery.