Gloria Borges Dies

The body dies but the spirit soars - Warren Little

How can someone you never met in person make you cry? Here's how: when it comes to Gloria Borges, who we understand passed away today, it's because she's the toughest, coolest, strongest woman we never met.

Gloria was diagnosed with Stage 4 colon cancer. Instead of feeling sorry for herself, she got cheerfully pugnacious and fought back.

Not just in her will to live; she actively organized a strategy to defeat colon cancer. As in permanently, totally and irrevocably. And after that, all cancers.

We got to know Gloria a while back. She wrote in because she's a Duke fan and she read DBR, and because she wanted to ask our help to publicize her wunderglofoundation.org and Wunder Project. We were more than happy to do it.

As impressed as we were with her tremendous attitude - she talked of the nerve of cancer to pick a fight with her and spoke in highly competitive terms about kicking cancer's butt - we underestimated her, partly because of her irrepressible, bubbly personality in the face of personal catastrophe. Briefly.

But not for long. Watch this video. If you watched it last time we posted it, please watch it again. Read the Wunderglo site and look at this woman's strength, what heart she had, what passion.

This is the person you should tell your daughters and sons - you should try to be like her. Whatever you do in your life, wherever you go, if you are as brave as Gloria was, we couldn't be prouder.

Anyone would be proud to have known her or loved her. We only knew her through e-mail and she had a huge effect on us.

We would urge all of you - stop what you're doing now and honor this woman. Go to wunderglo and make a contribution to her cause and memory. This is one of the most admirable people to ever come through Duke. We're blessed to have been touched by her spirit, if only slightly, and we can't begin to imagine the loss her loved ones feel.

We talked to her a while back, in November or December, and said we hadn't heard from her for awhile and were worried, Stage 4 being Stage 4 and all.

She wrote back and said she was fine, not to worry, and that she'd kick cancer's ass.

We believed in her enough to believe that she could. That she couldn't, while not unexpected, is still heartbreaking. But her foundation will fight on. We urge you to support it generously in honor of her memory and unsinkable spirit.

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