September 29, 1957
June 8, 2020

Elise Akins

Elise Akins was diagnosed with Stage IV Glioblastoma in August of 2018 and passed peacefully on June 8, 2020. After successful resection surgery, she underwent radiation and approximately twelve months of daily chemotherapy. In March of 2020, she suffered a recurrence of the tumors, in two new locations. While she lost the ultimate battle, she did not go down without a fight. She worked her way from a wheelchair, to a walker, to a cane through tireless physical therapy. Her right leg mobility was limited from the surgery but she taught herself to drive left footed, even retaking the driver's examination and passing with flying colors. She maintained her independence and drive throughout. Living in St. Louis, she and her husband of 40 years made trips to Duke University every other month for her regular appointments, while receiving treatment locally in between. Between each successful visit to Duke, they took a trip together: Niagra Falls, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Ark Encounter, St. Petersburg, Beach Boys concert at Ryman Theater, and numerous visits with old friends. In twenty-two months she made countless memories with her husband, two children, four grandchildren, and a myriad of friends. While Elise’s time on this Earth has ended, her legacy will endure. Throughout her life and for the last twenty-two months especially, she has been the rock of her family and the guiding light of our dreams. She has pulled everyone closer together, reminded us of the true value of life, and remained steadfast in devotion to God and family throughout. She will be sorely missed, but never forgotten.

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