Our friend Jan Crandell died this week. You may not recognize her name because she never created a cane or attended a conference. But she knew all about you as she followed along on PolymerClayDaily. She collected your works, commissioning me to purchase pieces for her at each event. (This angel from Susan Hyde was a favorite.)

Jan was my college roommate, an English teacher and a retired state education administrator. She had a huge intelligence and a quick wit. She mentored many students and colleagues.

Early each morning she read the day’s PCD post and called me if she spotted a broken link, a misspelled word or, heaven forbid, a grammatical error. The technology terrified her but if I couldn’t get to a computer she’d fix my gaffes herself. She skyped me from her hospital bed and edited faithfully until very recently.

Jan was my personal coach and cheerleader. I was her technical guru. She bought any art I made, even the awful stuff. My art angel is gone and we lost a dear friend.

  • reply Kate/OrganicOdysseys ,

    I’m so sorry to hear of your loss Cynthia, she sounds like a wonderful treasured friend. I’m sure you have many happy memories together that I hope will help you get through this time of loss.


    • reply Lorrene ,

      Cynthia, I am so, so, so, very sorry to read of your loss. My arms are around you and I hope they bring you comfort.

      • reply Terry ,

        My condolences. You were so lucky to have such a remarkable woman as your coach & mentor. My prayers are with you & her family. Now is the time for you to pass on her torch & become a mentor to a needy artist. That way her legacy will live on.

        • reply Cyndi Cogbill ,

          Dear Cynthia,

          Thank you for sharing your friend with us. I can see how you will miss her. I hope you will find a way to make her memories happy and not sad.

          • reply JoAnn Baldwin ,

            The loss of a beautiful person is a loss for everyone. I am very sorry to hear of your personal loss…grief shared is grief diminished. Let love be what you remember most.

            • reply Marilyn Parigian ,

              Remember her smile and bask in the glow of her memory. Thank you for sharing this special friend.

              • reply Maureen ,

                Thanks for sharing your thoughts about Jan and her polymer clay love. Just one part of her, of course, but an important one that you two shared and shared with MoJam. Oh, I miss her and feel certain it will get worse.

                • reply Sally Pointon ,

                  Dear Cynthia – what a beautiful and loving tribute to your friend; thank you for sharing her with us all. Between the two of you and PCD I think you have and will continue to mentor and inspire many, many artists. Whatever the day brings I always enjoy my daily dose. Your friend sounds like she lived her life seeing its humour and beauty – what more can we ask for? whoops – rather, for what more can we ask? Best wishes to all, Sally

                  • reply carissa nichols ,

                    Thank you for sharing your friend with us Cynthia. I think she will be indeed chortling from somewhere wonderful.

                    • reply Heather Campbell ,

                      Cynthia, So sorry to hear about your dear friend. I feel your lonely heart. It sounds like she was a intricate part of your life and I sense that you have lots of fond memories to keep her near you always. Thanks for sharing the complexity of life with us.

                      • reply Christy Dickerson ,


                        Jan will always be with you. Just remember to chuckle each time you find a typo.


                        • reply Jill Palumbo ,

                          So sorry for the loss of your dear friend. She sounds like such a wonderful person, and it is evident that she was a real blessing in your life and you in hers as well.

                          • reply jana ,

                            Cynthia, I join with everyone else in expressing my sorrow for your loss. This woman, Jan, sounds like a genuine soul – how fortunate that you and she had each other.

                            It must be a month for loss, as well as birth – we’ve lost two dear ones this week (and all the pain and questioning that that brings), but also a little boy’s birth! Life is somethin’ else…

                            • reply Robin ,

                              Been there,my best friend was buried on her 39th birthday and I am sorry as you well know it is going to really suck for awhile……best thing you do is do something she would love.
                              And take care

                              • reply Pam ,

                                May you feel God’s presence and love during this unimaginable time. Our loved ones do not belong to us, they are only loaned to us for a short time. How wonderful to have had her as a friend! xoxo

                                • reply Jay King ,

                                  There are far too few angels and patron saints in this world. I’m sure Jan’s generosity of spirit will be greatly missed.

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