About Me

I’m a 59 year old wife and mother living in Minnesota.  I worked in the business world for 35 years in Purchasing,  Sales, Domestic & International Customer Service.  I retired in 2009 and I am now free to do as I please … and I’m loving it!!

I’ve been married to Roger for 33 years.  I have 2 daughters.  Elizabeth (Liz) was born on 9-12-83 and would be 30 years old today.  Anna is 27 and graduated from Minnesota State in December, 2008 with a Spanish major and Inter-cultural studies minor.  She is a world traveler having spent 3 months in Costa Rica and 3 months traveling SE Asia.  She is Director of Youth Ministry at Zion Lutheran Church in Stewartville, MN.  Toffee, our 5 year old Cairn Terrier, rounds out our family.

My parents are Tom and Jean and we have lived one block away from them for the past 30 years.  It has truly been one of the greatest blessings of my life.

I am the oldest of 4.  My brother Mike is a year and a day younger than me.  He is married to Barb and they live in the Twin Cities.

Sister Sue is 4 years younger than me and is a teacher in western MN.

Brother Randy, wife Nancy and kids, Madalyn and Thomas, is 6 years younger than I am, and also lives in the Twin Cities … 5 houses down from Mike and Barb.

I was living the all American dream, a husband, 2 kids, a dog, a house, a good job, and even a fence (but not the white picket kind) …

That all changed on 9-20-03 when Liz died very suddenly, very tragically and very unexpectedly.

She had just turned 20 and was beginning her sophomore year at the University of Minnesota.  She and 2 of her roommates died of smoke inhalation from an early morning fire at their duplex in Dinkytown, just a few blocks from the U.


The Universe has revealed to me in so many different, amazing, and tangible ways that Liz is not only alive, but she is living a wonderful new life! In many ways 9-20-03 was the beginning of a new life for me as well.  A new life that still includes Liz!

God has brought amazing people into my life who have helped me put the pieces back together … you can find their links on this site.

LIFE IS JOYOUS! … I hope you enjoy my musings and my journey!

PS … I was told this week that my activities are interesting!  That made me laugh … I never thought other people would find what I do interesting!  I love it … and I’ll try not to disappoint!

9 Responses to “About Me”

  1. AndrewBoldman June 4, 2009 at 8:36 pm #

    I really liked this post. Can I copy it to my site? Thank you in advance.

  2. Maggie July 18, 2009 at 9:59 am #

    Hi, i’m in the women empowering women group on kiva and came by your site after reading your post. This post brought tears to my eyes (in a good way). You’re ace!

  3. KivaFriend Unilove July 19, 2009 at 5:57 pm #

    Hello Kim:

    I too following you here form the ‘women empowering women’ team on KivaFriends.org. I lost my brother in Jan ’09 and my younger brother in ’06. I was so touched by your decision to lend in your daughter’s name that I had to drop by here and tell you I think you are amazing…


  4. Kim Wencl July 19, 2009 at 6:12 pm #

    Hi Lisa,

    Thank you for your kind words. I’m so sorry for your loss. We can’t change the past – but we can influence the future.


  5. KivaFriend Unilove July 19, 2009 at 7:20 pm #


    I started with your latest post today, and went on to read your whole blog, following your story back in time. You have an amazing spirit, and I again thank you for your words. You share of your life, pain, and love so freely, and I came away with a lot to contemplate.

    Best regards,


  6. Kim Wencl July 19, 2009 at 7:37 pm #

    I started my blog as a way to document life as it happened and it was very healing for me. It was also my hope that I could help others by sharing my journey. Thank you so much, Lisa, for taking the time to read my blog and for your very kind words.

  7. clpikstudio September 24, 2013 at 8:03 am #

    hello!,I love your writing very much! percentage we communicatee extra approximately your article
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  1. How One Mother Transcended Her Grief « Triumph of the Spirit - October 20, 2008

    […] September 20, 2003, Kim Wencl‘s worst nightmare came true—her 20-year-old daughter, Liz, a sophomore at the University of […]

  2. A Letter From Liz « Triumph of the Spirit - February 1, 2009

    […] Letter From Liz By Phil Bolsta On September 20, 2003,Kim Wencl‘s worst nightmare came true—her 20-year-old daughter, Liz, a sophomore at the University […]

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