What can I say about the great lady, Lori Lynn Edgmon Hammond? Our oldest sons have been bff's (best friends forever) for nearly a decade and Lori invited me into her local circle of friends which were all the moms of all the boys who were part of our son's tight knit circle of friends. It wasn't until drama club that she and I became more chummy which soon became a beautiful friendship that I truly cherished.
The parent meeting for drama club that year, where we were supposed to sign up for volunteer duties and neither of us knew anyone else so we stood close together at the edge of the room until the parental population finally dissipated. The only thing left for us to volunteer for was to provide dinner for 45 people. Thank God she took the lead and pulled me along by the hand like a little sister. We teamed up for every event thereafter.
Lori was adept at such things as preparing a meal for an army of thespians, having been the baseball mom for both Jimmy and Mitchell at Shaw Park every summer and a boy scout den mother, as well.
In fact, like me, Lori was no fan of nature. That is to say, nature is wonderful when observed on the air conditioned side of a window. Yet when it was her turn, as a Den Mother, for her boys' Boy Scout troupe, to oversee an outdoors, overnight camping trip, she handled it with such finesse, one would be led to believe she was a camping aficionado when, in fact, she had never been camping in her life nor had the desire to sleep, all exposed, in nature; with bugs, snakes, coyotes, and whatever other woodland creatures that might be scurrying about under the dark, sticky/humid, hot Georgia moon. This is where my memory fails.... I know she handled it in a most clever, classy lady .....hedge around the unpleasant parts of camping during summer in Georgia with a group of little boys has fallen into the holes of my brain. Lori and I used to joke that she was crippled from the waist down and I was crippled from the waist up so we complete each other ❤️. She cried while a held her about her loss of mobility. I came as often as I could to keep her company while she was stuck in a wheelchair waiting for her broken foot and ankle to heal. We would drink wine, tell each other funny and interesting stories. These conversations would always turn philosophical for a while and we would speak of our deaths and the preparations we want in place for our children. Lori was my best friend. I miss her so much.
Lori was observant, thoughtful and kind. When my car broke down and I had to drive an embarrassing station wagon that looked like straight outta Compton, she called me up and suggested she pick me up to go take prom pictures so I wouldn't have to show up in a "hoopty" car in front of half a hundred parents who had not fallen on hard times. When I was in the hospital ER, Lori was the first adult to know because of our sons being so close. She ordered pizza and had it sent to my house, then texted me to tell me she had fed the kids. No one had ever been so kind to me. I marveled over how she read my mind, knew my worries and took care of them when I couldn't.
Lori loved her family more than anything. She would get so excited when the boys would take her out to dinner. When Moo (Mitchell) would come home from college her face would light up a stadium. And when Jing (Jimmy) came home to live and finish college locally, she was overjoyed. Even if she griped a little that he would not actually graduate from UGA, she was still over the moon that he was home. And when Jimmy would do so much to take care of her, she doted on him. She shined when she spoke of their accomplishments, their girlfriends, their blossoming lives.
Her friends were always held closely and she managed to meticulously nurture each of those, and there were many! Yes, she was a feisty lady and it's a trait we all loved about her. She would speak her mind, most eloquently, mind you, and she would have your back in a heartbeat should someone say a cross word to or about her friends.
Lori worked at Lockheed Martin for 23 years, where she headed up the Process Improvement Training program for the Aeronautical Division. She loved her career and felt good about all the work and effort it took to get her, a woman, to such a level as hers in Aeronautics, that it was tightly woven into the fabric of her identity.
Her personality showed up all the time at work. Whenever her name came up in a conservation. you only had to mention her first name, Lori, and everyone knew who you were talking about.
Working with Lori was fun, it was not work. She had a wit that no one could match. At a Lockheed Martin Corporation outbrief she inserted her fellow workers freshman high school picture into the outbrief without him knowing anything about it. As he stood to present he was totally surprised, as was the executive vice president and his staff. Everyone had a good laugh.
After many years of searching for a comparable position, carrying a high level of importance that would produce something of great value to the world while achieving personal satisfaction, she would like me to let you all know that she has finally received an offer she could not refuse. She will not be returning to her pervious arrangements, but doesn't want us to worry about her because she will be with family and friends whom she has not seen in a long while. And when the time is right she will send for you to join them. The assignment comes with a Heavenly sign-on bonus and infinite benefits package.
She has left explicit instructions for her two sons, James Hammond and Mitchell Hammond to enjoy life to the fullest in her absence. She will catch up with you over a game of spades at some point in the distant future. any negligence to adhere to these rules of conduct she has laid out for them will not be tolerated, and could culminate in a brief, return visit.
I want to tell all of you good people what a delightful person Lori was. She was kind, thoughtful and considerate of others. She was always genuinely concerned with the well being of others, even when she, herself, was in tremendous pain. She always wanted to do for others, taking care of their needs and business during times when they weren't able to do it themselves. Because of her, I became a member of the group of mom's I have affectionately named "The Cat Pack," and made me feel not only welcomed by wanted. I always feared I could never return her depth of thoughtfulness because I tend to miss a lot of social cues. Lori was a firecracker; feisty yet poised and proper, funny yet dignified and refined. She will be greatly missed by all.
Donations to the Wounded Warrior Project, in lieu of flowers are greatly appreciated.
There will be no public services because she wouldn't want us to "make a fuss," and Covid-19 saw to it that, that wish would be granted. She has been cremated and her ashes will return home where she belongs, with her dearest loved ones.
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