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91-Year-Old Diagnosed With Cancer Says No To Chemo And Yes To Travel And Camper

22 January 2017 85 views

The inspiration behind the Facebook page "Driving Miss Norma," Norma Bauerschmidt, was diagnosed with uterine cancer only two days after the death of her 67 year old husband.

When she heard the diagnosis from her doctors, she informed them, "I'm 90-years-old, I'm hitting the road."

Instead of spending her final days undergoing chemotherapy treatments this 91-year-old woman chose to hit the open road and has inspired hundreds of thousands of people in the process. 

Thelma and Louise have finally met their match.

And hitting the road is exactly what she did. Along with her son Tim and his wife Ramie they packed up the RV, and the three of them - plus Ringo their poodle - traveled 13,000 miles and visited 75 different locations in 32 states in just one year.

Their journey started on August 24, 2015. 

One year later, the family's journey was addressed in a post on Facebook.

"Miss Norma has experienced more 'firsts' than we can count. Big things, like riding in a hot air balloon or on a horse, to little things like getting a pedicure or having her first taste of key lime pie, oysters and fried green tomatoes. she has had her hair done by ten different stylists and has crossed the time zones 9 times (I think.)

Over these past 12 months, all of us have learned so much about living, caring, loving and embracing the present moment.

No matter where we are, when asked where her favorite spot has been on this trip, Norma now says, 'Right here!' We have also learned so much about the human spirit and the beauty of people from all over the world."

Now that's what I call an elephant ear!

After a year on the road the Bauerschmidt family celebrated with cake and beer.

However, last month Bauerschmidt's health started to deteriorate. They parked the RV in the "most ideal place we could imagine": San Juan Island in the Pacific Northwest.

Then on September 30, a post to the Driving Miss Norma Facebook page read: "Life is a balance between holding on and letting go. Today we are letting go."

Norma's daughter-in-law, Ramie, said in an interview with ABC News earlier this year that they hope this adventure helps other families as they have their own conversations about end-of-life plans.

"Everyone has different ideas about how they want the end of their life to work," said Ramie. "As a planet, we need to have this conversation."

A celebration of the life of Norma Bauerschmidt took place on October 7 in Friday Harbor, Washington.

When asked how Norma wanted people to pay their respects, she said, simply: "Wouldn't it be nice if others could just spread joy in the world."

RIP Norma Bauerschmidt. What do you think about Norma's final choice in life?