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Lisa "Renée" Atkinson

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Lisa "Renée" Atkinson May 14, 1955 - Feb. 21, 2008 Renée probably burst into heaven on Thursday, February 21, 2008, exclaiming "I want to sit on God's lap." We know our Heavenly Father has granted her request. Every aspect of life was an adventure to her and now the true adventure begins. One of the quotes from her blog states, "God is good...He is good all the time...I hang onto the promise of Him." Renée battled mycosis fungoides, a rare cancer, for nearly five years. This awful disease disfigured this beautiful woman's body, but it could not disfigure her soul. Countless people have testified of the impact of her life on them as she walked "through the valley of the shadow of death." Her life was an offering to God that revealed His love, faithfulness and compassion. Renée, born in Fort Worth, Texas, was six days old when her mother, Carol, received her into their family. At age 18, Renée dedicated herself to the Lord, Jesus Christ, and has followed Him with abandon ever since. Working with Youth with a Mission in Greece and Turkey was one of the highlights of her life before she met Keith, her husband. Renée met and married Keith, the inspiration and love of her life, eighteen years ago. Their marriage was one of joy and peace, and was permeated with the love of Christ. They have three wonderful teenage children, Luke, Alex, and Sam who were the delight of Renée's life. Exuberant and energetic, Renée worked in jobs outside the home (from secretary to church pastor's assistant to traveling the world as a computer trainer) until her declining health forced her retirement last year from Austin State Hospital, where she worked as a medical records technician. The family would like to thank everyone who has prayed for Renée, took care of the Atkinson children while she received treatment in Houston, helped pay for medical expenses, prepared food for them, and supported them. Their family at Red River Church, where Keith serves as a pastor, has been amazing in their love and support. We know the brothers and sisters at Red River will be there to help and comfort the family as they walk through this time of grief and loss. The family would also like to express their deep appreciation to the doctors at MD Anderson who treated Renée. They include Dr. Madeleine Duvic, Dr. Kelly Vidulich, and Dr. Talpur. This team of competent and committed professionals became like family during her battle against cancer. Please pray for them as they work to find a cure for this devastating disease. In classic, "whatever I have is yours" Renée style, her body will be donated to a rare disease research center in Oregon to further expand new treatments for this cancer. Renée is survived by her loving husband and father of their children, Keith, sons Luke and Sam, daughter Alex, mom Carol and step-dad Bill von Rosenberg, brother Scott Robinson, and many other relatives from their families. Renée's Celebration Memorial will occur on Saturday, March 1st at 2:00 p.m. Visitation with the family will take place on Friday, February 29th from 7:00-8:30 p.m. Both will be held at Red River Church at 4425 Red River Street, Austin, TX 78751 (redriverchurch.org). In lieu of flowers, donations may be given to Red River Church to establish a college fund for the Atkinson children.
Published in Austin American-Statesman on Feb. 24, 2008
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