Erika, you passed away at 2:50 p.m. yesterday. Your sister Emily said the Moore Brothers' Now Is the Time for Love was playing.
You had been on life support since Sunday when you were discovered unconscious at home. None of us could grapple with the fact that an unexpected, deadly issue had been lurking, silently and undetected, before it struck you down in the blink of an eye.
How can it be that our vibrant, beautiful friend is gone? Our hearts are broken.
You were so creative in every aspect of your life, from fashion to art. At an early age you discovered through photography that you could see the world and light in a whole new way.
You earned a degree in photography from the prestigious Art Center College of Design in 1995. Your works can be found in galleries and private homes, as well as in the books Greene & Greene: The Passion of the Legacy by Randell Makinson and Greene and Greene by Edward Bosley.
You were crowned queen of the Pasadena Doo Dah Parade in 1999. Here you are (center) with some other former queens at the 2013 parade -- Kavita Sharma, Rosie Schoen, Michelle Mills and Dianne Patrizzi.
A child is never supposed to precede her parents in death. It's just not the way the universe is intended to work. But you did, leaving behind your mother Janeen Marrin, your father Jim Marrin, your sister Emily and her children Lucy and Leo whom you adored so much.
It seemed nothing could separate you and your dad. . .until now.
Last night when a few friends gathered with Jim, Janeen and Emily to hold them close, I leafed through this book that was on the dining table. It brought me a sense of comfort.
Some time ago you opted to be an organ donor. So you have given the ultimate gift of hope to a half dozen people who will live longer and fuller lives because of your selfless generosity. They and their families will be forever grateful.
Farewell, Erika. It was my honor and privilege to know you.
This is not the end; you will live on in our hearts and minds.
Photos are from Kavita, Erika's Facebook page and my own archives.