No gauge exists to measure the value of words.
The certainty of written words though, is they last forever and can raise up or tear down those who read them.
Last week the impact of a tragedy on a local highway blanketed the region like a fog of shock and grief.
Two well respected women and a well known and equally respected truck driver died in a crash at the Caledonia intersection.
Each victim left behind a wide circle of family and friends to mourn a loss that cuts deep into the very core of their being.
One of the victims of the fatal collision was Gail Creed of Pembroke.
Her mantra was to uplift the spirits of those around her - family, friends and, in all probability, many she had never even met.
Social media was one of the means Ms Creed used as a springboard to spread good cheer. Often she would start her morning by sharing a Thought for the Day on Facebook. Her offerings might have been spiritually-based, a quote from a famous writer or, sometimes, a positive random thought of her own.
No matter the source of her offerings, her words were commonly anticipated and obviously well read. Appreciation was expressed in the numerous comments or ‘Likes’ under her posts.
To quote literary critic William Hazlitt “Words are the only things that last forever; they are more durable than the eternal hills.”
When spoken with truth and feeling, words can influence the thinking, and impact the lives of those who read them.
Ms Creed has provided us with a valuable, and very basic lesson.
Most of us have been cautioned, from childhood, to think before we speak. It is equally important to think before you write; you never know the effect your words may have on others.
This is especially true when working with the media in general and, more specifically, our work here at The Graphic. Each story we write touches someone, somewhere, in some way.
A story may be the one and only time someone sees their name printed in the paper - the words that tell their story are significant and memorable.
People are often defined by their words, and Ms Creed was influential in her carefully selected and sincere contributions on the verbal stage.
Written words shared publicly cannot be erased - they remain in the minds of their recipients indefinitely.
One of the legacies Ms Creed leaves behind will be her uplifting choice of words, and the effort she put into sharing those words.
Despite the power of words, they are still incapable of taking away the pain of those whose lives have been forever changed through immeasurable loss. But perhaps it’s fitting to use one of Ms Creed’s Facebook quotes: “Life may be tough, but we’ve got a God who is tougher.”
Ms Creed’s funeral service was held Tuesday at Wellspring Presbyterian Church near the Peters Road/Commercial Road intersection. She was 72.
The tragic accident also claimed the lives of 90-year old Jean Llewellyn of Gaspereaux and 57-year old Harvey Francis of Fortune.
Heather Moore is editor of The Eastern Graphic. She can be reached at email@example.com