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 Post subject: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 3:33 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 3:58 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 4:51 pm 
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What a beautiful tribute! Thank you for it.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:04 pm 
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Tribute to New Girl
2009 - 2012

New Girl flew out to defend her territory on May 9, 2012: Banding Day in Harrisburg. She faced a challenger to protect her babies and her ledge. She returned victorious, but most likely already carrying her death within her - unnoticed injuries already beginning to brew the festering infection that would bring her down. We had no idea how soon we were to lose her, but remarked about her odd behavior over the next few days. By the time we could see that she was in trouble, it was already too late. She went from fine to desperately ill to gone forever in such a short span, we didn't have time to prepare ourselves for it. In a year that has seen such losses already, we were now dealt another, for many of us the most crushing blow there could be.

We searched for her, for days, though we knew in our hearts that she was gone. We poured ourselves into watching over her chicks as she could no longer be there to protect them herself. We watched in sorrow as Lil Dad searched out the favorite places where New Girl could often be found, calling for her to come home.

And we shared our worry, our sense of loss and our concern for her young family. It is a month today since that fateful battle, 24 days since our dear girl left us. The ledge and its occupants have moved on with their lives. The boys have fledged successfully and their skill grows every day. Lil Dad has courted another and his suit has been accepted. These things are proper, and I am happy to see them happening. My sorrow for their loss is eased.

But I know nothing will fill the empty place in my heart that belongs only to New Girl. She was MY falcon in a way Mom never was, despite her status and total falcon greatness. Not that I loved Mom or grieved her passing any less, but she was already legendary by the time I found out about the falcons in Harrisburg. She was complete and successful and had already outlasted the averages; she had nothing left to learn or prove and was universally loved. As she deserved.

New Girl wasn't perfect in the same way that Mom was; she was perfect in her own way. She was little more than a juvie herself when she arrived, awkward and playful, like a little girl playing house. Beautiful and just adorable. I loved her from the start, watched her like a doting big sister, and my love grew as I watched how hard she worked at learning to be a good mom and partner. And what a wonderful job she did with Lil One and what a brilliant little flyer he was from the start! Feeding difficulties and messy quarters notwithstanding, I was so proud of her and loved her so much and expected years and years of enjoying her endearing quirks and watching her brilliant offspring.

Instead, before she even got fairly started, her life is over. I don't know what falcons think. I don't know if she faced her death with bitterness that it was too soon, or sorrow that she wouldn't get to see her two precious chicks mature and fledge. Probably not. They say falcons don't have the part of the brain that processes that sort of emotion. Instead, she bravely left the ledge so that she wouldn't draw predators down near her babies and turned her face away from life without any fuss or complaint.

But I feel bitterness and sorrow - for her and for myself. She was robbed of the life she should have had - of the years ahead sharing her life and raising chicks with her mate, of the countless hours wheeling under the sun, feeling the lift under her wings, hunting and catching prey, charging at window-falcons, crying out to the wind, loving life in all its wildness. We were robbed of enjoying these things with her, but more than that, we were robbed of untold future generations that may have been and now will not. She - and we - were robbed of what should have been her greatest legacy.

Yes, her time was short. But she made her own place in the Falcon Roll of Honor. In addition to three wonderful young males, her legacy was courage, devotion, intensity and joy. So today, as I continue to grieve her loss, I also celebrate her life and the love she inspired. She was a magnificent falcon, and we were lucky to have her in our lives. She will be remembered with love forever. A noble legacy indeed.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:35 pm 
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Sue, that is absolutely beautiful! I have tears rolling down my face.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:55 pm 
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Westwindschild, it took me a long time to read your written tribute to New Girl, because with every sentence I had to stop and wipe my tears and ponder my similar thoughts. It was a privilege to ride this journey of saying "Goodbye" to New Girl along the path that skygirlblue and you have paved.


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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 10:19 pm 
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OH BOY, WHAT CAN I SAY? WHAT A BEAUTIFUL TRIBUTE TO OUR NEW GIRL. NO, I'M NOT READY FOR THIS, BUT I HAD TO COME HERE AND NOW ALL THE FEELINGS ARE COMING OUT ONCE AGAIN ALONG WITH ALL THE TEARS. NEW GIRL WAS FIRST AROUND THAT WE KNEW OF ON 9/9/2010 AND FIRST IN THE SCRAPE WITH LIL DAD ON 9/10/2010. THE LAST DAY WE SAW HER WAS 5/16/2012 WHEN I SAW HER FLY OFF AROUND 333 MARKET NEVER TO RETURN AGAIN. THAT MORNING I SAW HER STRUGGLING LIKE SHE WAS ALWAYS COMES BACK TO ME AND TEARS ME APART. IT WAS SO HARD TO TAKE THE VIDEO, BUT IN MY MIND I FELT IT WOULD HELP THE PEOPLE WHO WOULD TRY TO HELP HER KNOW MORE ABOUT WHAT WAS WRONG WITH HER. IT SURE IS HARD WATCHING NATURE AS WE DO, BUT THE FALCONS ARE JUST SO AMAZING, YOU CAN'T SEEM TO TURN AWAY.

I HAVEN'T READ SUE'S POST YET BECAUSE I NEED TO GET READY FOR THAT ONE. WILL TRY TO GO READ IT NOW. TOO MUCH GOING ON IN MY LIFE RIGHT NOW TO BRING ALL THESE FEELING BACK AGAIN............

FLY HIGH AND FREE NEW GIRL, YOU WERE VERY SPECIAL TO US ALL AND WE WILL NEVER FORGET YOU!

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 10:22 pm 
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Reenie, all I can say is HUGS and SMOOCHES to you!!! You are the heart and soul of this forum and Harrisburg's ledge. Take all the time you need to be ready. We are here for you whenever you need us.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:20 pm 
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OH MY! I forced myself to read SGB and Sue's Tribute's to New Girl. So beautiful, so complete. I have cried for her so much myself. I have her beautiful big picture in our Foyer for all to see when they enter. She was a true Beauty. In every detail. I won't write more as all has been said , but She and Mom have taught us how delicate their life is as it hangs in balance with danger. Fly High New Girl, where there is no danger, pain, or sorrow. I will never forget You.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 9:21 pm 
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MA, that is beautiful!!! Sue, you really have a way with words & I love it!! Thank you for your words & devotion. To everyone here, I hope it all turns out well ...... will be looking.
Again, Thank you MA & Sue & all those who follow <3

Love you Reenie!!!!!!!!!!


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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2012 9:13 am 
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It has taken me a while to post something here. Probably a sense of denial. When New Girl first showed up on the ledge it was almost like she was frightened. I did have trouble accepting her, as I loved Mom dearly, and could not imagine any other female up there or sitting in the scrape. Now she is gone. I guess I didn't realize how much I cared for her until she met her terrible fate. Often we just assume things will be alright, but with nature nothing is certain. It is hard for me to be downtown and look up at the roof of the U Building without thinking of her sitting there clinging to life. She was a wonderful mother to three fine healthy males. So sad to think there will not be any more. Her time with us was too short. Really don't know what else to say, as all of this is extremely difficult. Sue always has such a wonderful way with words, something I don't have.


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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2012 4:05 pm 
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Jane I will never forget how it felt when we spent that whole day in Harrisburg, searching for her. Every birdie silhouette we saw, I thought it would be her. We wanted so very much to find her alive and get her to the vet. With such strong desire, it didn't seem possible that we could fail. But of course, we did.
Then, when we thought they had found her at the Hilton, for that moment before we realized it wasn't her, how we both broke down and sobbed. I knew how hard it was for you to accept New Girl at first, but I also knew how much you came to love her.

If the spirit lives forever, I like to think that it helped ease her transition to whatever comes next to learn how very much love, from so very many souls, she carried with her when she went. I hope that she saw, and was comforted by, the dedication of so many to seeing her boys safely into the sky.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2012 4:50 pm 
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Sue, you've done it again. You have such a knack for putting my feelings into words in a way I can never achieve. You should be a poet.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2012 7:37 pm 
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Awwww Jane, I did not mean to slight you or any one on this scary wonderful place. You have expressed yourself in so many wonderful ways. Don't know how to tell you how much I have learned lurking in the background.......Thank you & all the devoted people on this forum!!


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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2012 9:02 pm 
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Jjop, I certainly don't feel slighted. Never thought a thing of it. I've never been very good at handling unpleasant things and commenting on them. Thinking about the kindness and understanding of those people at the Hilton just overwhelms me. They actually spent an entire weekend searching for her on every little nook and cranny on that building. Am feeling very hollow right now.


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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 4:10 pm 
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NEW GIRL, much has been written here about you. I saw you as an individual, slightly different coloring, a large and beautiful example of your kind, a first time mother for two seasons, a quick learner. L'il Dad had to show you how to stand close to your chicks to feed them. They were nothing to fear. Your joy of motherhood showed in your reluctance for Dad to brood the eggs or feed the chicks. I think you finally figured out that he needed to enjoy the privilege of helping raise each one, that he, too, loved them. I never did understand your fascination with the bird heads you collected around you in the nest box, perhaps they were especially tasty tidbits you were saving for later? I laughed one day as you looked all around for a head I had seen Dad carry away. I enjoyed your stern regard of the windows where you knew humans were working and watching you and your family, but was worried when you started flying into the glass in attack posture, fearing you would hurt yourself. I loved your tender care for your boys, who have had to learn their trade as tiercels without your help, and know they miss you. I was watching the day you landed on the ledge, fed some tidbits to the boys, stood there looking around, then turned your back and flew away never to be seen again. All the tears in the world will never bring you back. Know that although you are Gone, you are NOT FORGOTTEN!!


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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:33 pm 
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Sue I just read your tribute to New Girl and I am typing with tears in my eyes. I think she knew and accepted with strength her fate and like every good Mother she did the right thing for her family. She chose to leave to protect them. Did she know what she was doing, absolutely. Did she do it willingly, of course. Would she make that sacrifice again, a million times over. Can she be replaced, never. Will you learn to love the next one, begrudgingly. But love you will and hurt again and accept the replacement because that is what you do. That is what we all do because we love a beautiful creature we can't control.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:42 am 
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:loveheart2: Wow! Such beautiful, loving tributes by SGB, Sue, and everyone else.

All I can say is that it was a very tough act for New Girl to follow in Mom's footsteps, but she held her own and won Lil' Dad's heart as well as ours as she raised and cared for her boys this season. May she rest in peace with the other falcons who've gone before her.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 10:14 pm 
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I've been putting off writing a tribute to New Girl, partly because I can't say anything that hasn't already been said, much better than I ever could. Several people have already posted my feelings and thoughts of her very well. So instead, I'm just going to post a few thoughts and memories of her all too short time here with us.

When New Girl first arrived here, I didn't want to like her because she was taking the place of Mom who I loved and admired so much and enjoyed watching for several years. There was the possibility that New Girl had caused Mom's death and that compounded my feelings toward her. It didn't take long though for my feelings toward her to soften and to grow into admiration for her too. First of all, she was a beauty, and Lil Dad had chosen to have her as his mate. That in itself made a difference because he wanted her there, so who am I to not accept her. It wasn't up to me! Then just watching her and her playfulness made me like her even more. She was hardly more than a juvie herself, but here she was, ready to be a mother, willing to learn from Lil Dad how best to do that, and she made every effort to learn what was expected to raise a family. I so enjoyed watching her play with her first Little One, and reading posts about it from those who could be there to see her fly out with him and playing games with him as he learned to be a tiercel. By this season, she was firmly embedded in my heart too. I so enjoyed some of her silly, crazy ways and the unusual things she did. I don't think I will ever see a bird head on the ledge again without thinking of her odd obsession with them this season. It will make me sad, but I won't dwell on it because life is hard for these birds and the circle does go on. I will always wonder what happened to cause her to suddenly become so ill. I will always wonder if anything could have been done to help her if she had been captured and taken to rehab. Was she seriously injured in a fight with another falcon? Was it the dreaded Trich virus? It will be a long time until I forget the last video of her and how she seemed to stay away from her boys so they would not come to harm because of what was happening to her. When I read Reenie's post that day of seeing her fly off, I knew in my heart she wouldn't be back, even though I hoped she would be so she could get help. I knew it wouldn't be and mourned for her loss and for her loss to Lil Dad and her two boys. She did what she could to give her three sons a good start in life and I wish them all well and hope we hear of them someday at their own territories. I will think of her from time to time with fond memories.

May her spirit soar high and free.

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 Post subject: Re: NEW GIRL~IN LOVING TRIBUTE
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 10:33 pm 
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I'm crying all over again with reading the words of Corva, Cheryl, normangelo and Jane. You all knew her so well and hearing your feelings about her helps the rest of us to cope.



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