Rachel A. Ramsay, 29

Rachel A. Ramsay, 29, of Philadelphia, PA and formerly of Lancaster, PA, passed away unexpectedly at Pennsylvania Hospital, Philadelphia, PA on November 7, 2011 after a brief battle with cancer.  Born in Lancaster, PA, she was the daughter of Robert M. and Karen (Whiteley) Ramsay, Jr, of Lancaster.

Rachel was an Attorney with the Philadelphia Public Defenders Office.

Rachel was a graduate of St. Anne’s Catholic School and Lancaster Catholic High School (2000), Loyola University of Maryland (2004), and Widener University Law School (2007).

Surviving in addition to her parents are her two sisters, Leah E. Ramsay of Washington D.C. and Althea Ramsay Carrigan, wife of Daniel Carrigan, of Lancaster, PA , her brother, Robert W. Ramsay, of Washington, D.C., her niece,  Olivia J. Young,  her maternal grandmother, Phyllis Whiteley, and her partner, Jacob W. Sechrist M.D., of Philadelphia, PA.  Rachel was preceded in death by her paternal grandparents, Robert M. and Elsie B. Ramsay, and her maternal grandfather, Robert B. Whiteley.

Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend a Christian Prayer Service on Saturday, November 12, 2011 at 1:00 pm at St. John Neumann Catholic Church, 601 E. Delp Road, Lancaster, PA  17601, with the Msgr. Richard Youtz as  Celebrant.  The family will greet friends on Saturday, November 12, 2011 from  11:30 am -1:00 pm at the church.  In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be sent in Rachel’s memory to the Humane League, 2195 Lincoln Highway East, Lancaster, PA  17602. To send the family online condolences, please visit Charles F. Snyder Jr. Funeral Home & Crematory 717-560-5100.

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I am sorry for your loss.  I knew Rachel from law school.  Not only was she respectful and beautiful, but a warm-hearted girl I was glad to have known.  She always brought a smile to my face.  I am very saddened to hear what happened to her, and send my best wishes to all friends and family.  Peace be with you all.

– Scott Wild

Rachel and I went to Law School together.  We were involved in the same criminal defense projects & both ended up as public defenders in different counties.  No matter how much stress would be surrounding her with work or projects or final exams, she always had a smile on her face & would always help with anything she could.  She was the kindest, friendliest person one could ever know — not the type of person I would have expected to meet at Law School! 
Her presence was a blessing.  Everyone who knew her is a better person for it.  My deepest sympathies go out to her parents, Jake, and all the rest of her family.  I am so sorry for your loss.

Dave Iannucci

Dear Ramsay Family,
I was so saddened to hear of Rachel’s passing.  I have such fond memories of spending time with Rachel, whether it was in Paris, in youth group, or just hanging out.  Her smile was radiating and her spirit full of energy.  You are in my prayers and I feel so fortunate to have known such a wonderful person. 
Emily (Huegel) Kocher

Karen, Bob and family,
You have been on our hearts this week as we are all too familiar with the walk of your current journey and the path that lies ahead of you. The pain never goes away, but only becomes more tolerable over time. It has helped us to talk and be with others who truly know the devastation of losing a child as we are convinced that there is no greater pain. We are here for you in any way that you will allow us to be now and in the future. If you are open to seeing us, we will be in touch in the future as everyone begins to find a new norm.
With much love,
Barb and Bill Carter

Karen, Bob, Leah & Rob –
I am so very sorry for your loss.  My thoughts are with you all right now.
Amanda (Gale) Scott

Dear Althea, Dan, Oliva and Margart,
While I didn’t know Rachel from what I read she was a person that not only will you miss, she will also be a loss to those she so willingly served.
I will pray and keep you in my thoughts as the days pass.

Be Well
Rick Groff

Karen and Family,

Do not stand at my grave and
Weep for I am not there.

When you awake in the morning
I am the first light that touches you.

I am the shadow that lies down beside you
And the strength that protects you.

I am the breeze that gently blows your hair
And the snowflake that kisses your face.

Your love will keep me alive forever and
I will always be with you.

Do not stand at my grave and
Weep for me for I am not there.

I did not die.

I was sent this poem when my dad passed away and will pass on to you.

Patsy Lavinia

Dear Family of Rachel:

I met Rachel in 2007 when she was a member of Widener Law Review at Widener University School of Law.  Rachel was beautiful inside and out.  I remember her sense of humor and intelligence.  She was what I fondly called "my office daughter."  I have children around her age and I cannot imagine the grief you must be experiencing.  I am so very sad for your loss. 

Debbe A. Patrick

Dear Karen, Bob, and family,

I can’t begin to express my sadness and shock over the death of Rachel. You are all in my thoughts and prayers and hope that our Lord will bring some comfort to you. I am deeply sorry for your tragic loss.

Geri Monatesti

Dear Karen, Bob and Family, 
We can’t tell you how sorry we are to hear of your loss. Our prayers and thoughts are with you.

Sandra and David Schaffhauser

Dear Karen and Bob,
I am deeply saddened to hear of your loss. Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.

Sid Pontz

Bob, Karen and Family,
I am deeply saddened and stunned to have learned of Rachel’s passing. I lost touch with all of you after I moved to Florida in ’86. When I finally came back to PA I attempted to look you all up and see how the kids were doing, but with no luck. I remember them as babies and toddlers. What a wonderful threesome they were to babysit. I take great pride in knowing that I was Leah and Rachel’s first babysitter, not sure if I was Robbie’s (that’s what you all called him as a baby) and still feel privilege that you entrusted me to watch them. They have always had a special place in my heart all these years. What a beautiful young woman Rachel turned into. I can only imagine how beautiful Leah and handsome Robert are. May you all find comfort in knowing Heaven now has a beautiful Angel.

With my Sincerest and Deepest Sympathies, 
Lori (Herr) Combs

Dear Karen, Bob and family,
A beautiful young woman, who gave so much to everyone around her. She shined with the love and confidence that she was always surrounded with at home. A life too short by our earthly standards, but we trust she is safe in the arms of God. The reality of this is too painful to comprehend; know you are loved by all of us and we are here for you in the days to come.
Andy and Susan Waltersdorf and family

Dear Karen – This is Donna, Sue B’s sister. I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your daughter. I did not know her, but I feel like I did because I always heard so much about her from Andrea and Sue. I cannot imagine the grief and shock you and your family are experiencing right now. Please know that you and your loved ones are in my prayers. Please let her boyfriend know that I grieve for him as well, and will be praying for him also. May God carry all of you through this difficult time.

As a former classmate of Rachel’s, I can’t begin to say how sorry I am for your loss. I am glad to have known Rachel. The world has lost a special person. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Reagan Warfield

My thoughts and prayers are with your family at this time.  I remember Rachel as a child, when I knew her best, and enjoyed her kindness and happy spirit.  It was great to hear and read about the all that she enjoyed and achieved later on in life. I know her memory will live on while she rests in a better place.

Matt Gale

Dear Karen & Family –There is little I can say at this time of such sorrow.  If only there were words kind enough or loving enough to bring you comfort and peace. You are in my deepest thoughts and prayers. 
Diane Kepner  

Karen and family

I  am so shocked and sorry to hear about this terrible loss.  I am thinking of you and cannot say much more than that.

Nancy Elkin

Dear Family,

Rachel was a shining light in the Criminal Justice Center.  Although I did not know her socially, she was a true professional in the courtroom.  More importantly, she was extremely pleasant and I will always remember her beautiful smile (which she showed alot).  I am very sorry for your loss.

Max G. Kramer

Dear Bob, Karen and Family,
Please know that you are in our prayers at this difficult time.
Chris and Kathy Ruoff

Dear Leah and family,

Please accept my thoughts and prayers for you and your family.  St. Anne School remembered Rachel in our weekly prayers.

Peace and all good
George Garbrick

Rachel’s happy, vivacious, loving personality will always be a part of all who were blessed enough to know her. Rachel was a great friend to me throughout studying abroad in Spain, college, and beyond, and I will miss her more than words can say. My heart goes out to all who loved her and my thoughts and prayers are with her family.
– Kim Becker

I am so sorry for your loss.  I know that in time more and more memories will surface to comfort you.  You will be in my thoughts and prayers.
Judy Sherwood

We were saddened to hear of the passing of your beloved daughter, Rachel. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this time of shock and grief. May God hold you all in his arms and give you some peace.
Bill and Karen Whikehart (parents of Rachael Whikehart)

I can’t know the pain of the loss you and your family must feel at this time. Please know that God knows your pain and is able to fill that void in your lives. May you find comfort in your memories and times you shared with Rachel.

You have my thoughts and prayers.

Fay Snyder

To the Ramsay family and Jake, my deepest condolences.  Rachel’s kindness, warmth, and loving heart touched everyone she met and to say she will be missed by many is an understatement.  Her bright smile and full-bodied laugh will always be remembered.  She was a wonderful, giving person and treasured friend.  I will miss her dearly.   My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Carrie McKendry

Dearest Ramsay Family,

I am so dearly sorry to hear of beautiful and kind Rachel’s passing…I cannot even begin to imagine how difficult this time must be for you.  I will continue to pray each day for you, that you may be filled with renewed strength, clarity, and peace during such a difficult time…and I will also pray for Rachel, and know that she will be welcomed with open arms in heaven…
My love and hugs to you all!!
Mary McHale

My thoughts & prayers are with you & your family during this difficult time.

I’m so sorry for your loss!

Dear Karen and family, My condolences on the passing of your precious daughter.  I will be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers. 
Christine Raczka

Dear Leah, so sorry for what happened. Our thoughts and love are with you and your family in this extremely difficult time.
Violeta, Robb & Pema

Rachel and I went to law school together and worked together our first year after graduation. Rachel was such an amazing person. She was so funny, witty and charming. You could always count on her for a good laugh.  But what struck me the most about Rachel was her kindness.  She cared so much about helping people –her heart was so big.  The world needs more people like Rachel. I am so lucky to have known Rachel and I will miss her very much.  My deepest condolences to her family and loving boyfriend Jake.

Karen and Bob,  
We wish you God’s strength and comfort, to help you at this time. Words of condolence never seem adequate. Just know that you are in our thoughts and prayers.

With Love and Fond Memories,
Peggy and Jim Ross

Karen and family, please accept my sincere sympathy on the passing of your daughter/sister.  Words can not express how devastating Rachel’s passing must be for you all.   Please know you are in the thoughts and prayers of your HACC "family".

Maureen Campbell
Lancaster Campus

Dear, dear Ramsays –
Rich and I were so shocked and saddened to read of Rachel’s passing.  I know there are absolutely no words to comfort you right now, but please know that you are all in our thoughts and prayers and Rachel’s memory will forever be in my piano keys.

Love –
Dianne and Rich Mousley

David and I send our condolences to the family of Rachel. We are so sorry for your loss and hope that you can find some comfort and peace at this devastating time.
Rhonda Foetsch

Karen & Family-
I am very sorry about the passing of your daughter and sister.  You have my sincere condolences.  May God comfort you and your family during these sad times.

Greg Seitz

My love and prayers are with you during this difficult time and I offer you my sincerest condolences.

Ramsey Family,
I am so sorry to hear about Rachel.  She was a beautiful, sweet and lovely person.  She will be forever missed.  Thoughts and prayers with you thru this sad time and always.
Kathy (Larnder) Kondash

You will remain in my prayers. Rachel will remain in the hearts of those who knew and loved her.

Dear Ramsay Family,

I can not imagine what you are going through and words can not express how very sorry I am for your loss. Rachel was a beautiful person and will be dearly missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing her. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Victoria Warfel (Ambs)

My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family.  We had the great pleasure meeting Rachel on several occasions  and she was one of the nicest and kindest people.

Stewart and Jenna Reed

Joe and I extend our heartfelt sympathy to the Ramsay Family and to Jake.  Our daughter Katie, was a dear friend of Rachel’s at Loyola and they also spent a semester together as roommates in Spain.  Rachel was a parent’s dream and we always enjoyed the times that we spent with her.  She accomplished so much is those 29 beautiful years.  We will keep you all in our thoughts and prayers. 
With love, 
Marilynn and Joe Vannucci

I went to Loyola with Rachel, and have so many happy memories of our four years together there, and of the years that followed. Rachel could light up a room. She was so kind, genuine, funny and compassionate. I always admired Rachel’s commitment to pursuing her dream of practicing law, and her passion for serving those who needed her law services most. I will dearly miss Rachel as my friend, and can only imagine how much her family and her boyfriend Jake will miss her. Please know that I am thinking about you all and praying for your peace and comfort.

Sara (Jerome) Baker

The loss of Rachel has shocked and saddened me.  I worked with Rachel at the PD’s office until leaving earlier in the year.  Rachel was so lovely and kind, such a hard worker, creative in her arguments and just a pleasure to know.  I am sure she made you very proud.  I wish you all the strength during this devastating time and know that memories of Rachel will continue to warm your hearts.

Lisa Altman

Dear Karen, Bob, and family:

There are no adequate words to say. Jeanette and I want you to know that we are praying for you and your family. We are so sorry for your loss.
May you feel God’s peace and grace during this time.

Jennifer & Jeanette

Dear Karen, Bob, Leah & Robert,
We don’t know how to express our feelings for your family at this time. I can envision Rachel’s dimples when she smiles. Her kind and sincere words. It is so difficult to understand why Rachel was taken to heaven so young. We hope you will be comforted in knowing your in our thoughts and prayers.

Love and peace,
Mary Lynn and Mike DiPaolo

Please know you and your family are in my prayers.  I was so sorry to  hear about your daughter’s death. 
Bernie Foran

I am deeply sadden by this news.  My sincere condolences go out to you and your family.  You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers at this time of your loss.  Take care.

Darren M. Parmer

Karen and family,
I am so sorry for your loss. I hope that there is some comfort in the thought that she is in God’s Loving Arms.
Deb Ennis

There is no words to express the frustration that Rachel’s loss brings to my heart. Seen Rachel’s name here is so surreal. It is almost impossible to believe that such a kind beautiful-full of life- always kind and smart being is no longer with us.

All my love is with Mr. and Mrs. Ramsay, Bochi, Robbie, Lili, Althea, Olivia and Jake.

Rachel and I graduated in the same year at Loyola.  We had many mutual friends so I knew what a great person she was.  Her passing is tragic not only because she was so young, but because I knew that it was her dream to be a pro bono lawyer and help those who truly needed it and we need more people like that in this world.  I am deeply sorry for your loss and I hope that you find comfort in knowing that she was admired by many of her Loyola classmates. 
Betsy (Riordan) Phelan

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