Geneseo mourns loss of Meghan Adams

Geneseo mourns the loss of childhood, special education and history major Meghan Adams, who lost her battle with cancer this summer on July 26.

Adams, originally from Farmington, NY, transferred to Geneseo in Fall 2006 to fulfill her dream of becoming a teacher.

"Meghan loved being in the schools, loved being around the children," said Susan Salmon, education professor.

Prior to her death, the School of Education bestowed on Adams the Ella Cline Shear Heroine Award. Adams is the third student to receive the award, which was created by the School of Education to honor those who face extenuating circumstances that make getting an official degree difficult.

"From her first semester at Geneseo, she touched the hearts of all who came in contact with her," the award dedication reads. "Her ready smile and energetic personality attracted many friends and she was a welcome addition in her classes. Meghan showed her enthusiasm for life to all of those around her."

"She was always thinking about other people, never herself," said senior Jenna Sawtelle, a friend of Adams. "She had faith in people and she was a hard worker. She would have made an amazing teacher."

Professor Ernie Balajthy, who taught Adams' education block, said, "The thing that impressed all of us was how many friends she had that respected her and walked with her through her illness."

Adams regularly volunteered at elementary schools and helped to raise funds for Strong Memorial Hospital's Bone Marrow Transplant Unit. At home, she enjoyed making her own jewelry and selling it to local wineries in Canandaigua.

Salmon said that Adams will be written about in medical journals, as the surgery used to try to save her was the first of its kind. As full-time medical treatment became necessary, Adams was not able to attend Geneseo in the spring. She would have returned as a senior this semester.

"I learned a lot from her," said friend Lindsay Borglum. "I'll never forget her. No one ever will."

A candlelight service in Adams' memory will be held on Sept. 19 at 8 p.m. in the Interfaith Center.