Today, we lovingly remember our daughter Anne on this 5th anniversary of her death in a terrorist attack.
We are incredibly proud of the work she did for our country to make the world a better place. We recently found her request to be assigned to fill an open position at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul. She wrote –
— “I take seriously the word ‘service’ in our job title, and want to be sent where I am needed most, where my work has the potential to do the most good.” . . .
— “I am especially excited to work in Afghanistan because the challenges of the job will require innovative and creative thinking.” . . .
— “A post in Kabul will require great sacrifice, but this is the reason I joined the Foreign Service – to serve my country in the best way I can.”
The spirit of service that motivated Anne is critical to the future of our country and the world. By working to advance the cause of diplomacy, and to help the people of Afghanistan, Anne has given breath to the ideal expressed by the words of the song: “Let there be peace on Earth, and let it begin with me.”
It is our hope that Anne’s spirit will live on in the work that U.S. diplomats continue to do around the world.
The Smedinghoff family would like to share the news that Anne’s classmate Greg Krupa will dedicate his climb of Cotopaxi Volcano in Ecuador in honor of Anne. Greg is part of a group called ROMP (Range of Motion Project). This group is dedicated to the advancement of right for those with disabilities around the world. The climb is supported by the US Embassy in Ecuador and is in honor of the 25th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) on July 26th. ROMP is in its 10th year of providing prosthetic and orthotic services to amputees and people living with disabilities the world over, especially in Latin America. ROMP was founded by another Fenwick alum and Greg’s brother, David Krupa, class of 98.
Greg explains why this cause is so important.
This event, Climbing for ROMP, is about mobility and equal healthcare access around the globe. The ADA is something we as Americans can be proud of. The ADA should be replicated world wide. Which is what the state department is currently undertaking. ROMP is fighting to ensure that everyone has access to necessary care, which changes lives in a profound and measurable way.’
The Smedinghoff family has been touched by the outpouring of support from people around the world looking for ways to help continue Anne’s work. In lieu of sending flowers, we ask that you consider supporting organizations that are engaged in the same great work that Anne dedicated herself to so selflessly.
To provide education and training to working street children through Aschiana in Afghanistan.
Afghan Girls Financial Assistance Fund:
To aid young Afghan women who seek a college education in the USA. AGFAF identifies promising young women, matches them with participating educational institutions and American host families and provides financial support for expenses not covered by either these institutions or host families.
Help the Afghan Children:
Dedicated to improving the lives of children in Afghanistan through quality education and helping them become educated, healthy, productive citizens.
SOLA, Afghanistan (School of Leadership, Afghanistan):
Dedicated to furthering education and leadership opportunities in Afghanistan and the world for the new generation of Afghanistan, especially for women.
To grow a sustainable organization that is recognized locally & globally for changing the lives of hundreds of thousands of youth through skateboarding and quality programmes – creating leaders that change the world.
Anne Smedinghoff Memorial Fund (Johns Hopkins University):
Provides support for students who wish to pursue activities in the area of international development or diplomacy. Those who wish to make a contribution can do so by visiting http://krieger.jhu.edu/giving and selecting the Anne Smedinghoff Memorial Fund in the online donation form, or by contacting Dan Luperchio at the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences at 410-516-0488.
The Smedinghoff family expresses their deep appreciation to friends and community members near and far for the outpouring of love and support they have received since Anne’s passing.
The greater Chicago community’s actions honoring Anne’s life and legacy are a testament to her vivacious and loving nature, and her zeal for helping others.
Anne’s journey will continue on Wednesday, April 17 at St. Luke Catholic Church in River Forest, Illinois.
It is kindly asked that representatives of the media continue to respect the privacy of the Smedinghoff family during this time.
The world lost a truly beautiful soul today. Our daughter, Anne, a U.S. Foreign Service Officer, died in the service of her country as she was traveling with a group to deliver books to a local school in the Zabul Province of Afghanistan. She joined the Foreign Service three years ago right out of college and there was no better place for her. Anne absolutely loved the work she was doing. Her first assignment was in Caracas, Venezuela. She then volunteered for an assignment at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, which she began in July, 2012. Working as a public diplomacy officer, she particularly enjoyed the opportunity to work directly with the Afghan people and was always looking for opportunities to reach out and help to make a difference in the lives of those living in a country ravaged by war. We are consoled knowing that she was doing what she loved, and that she was serving her country by helping to make a positive difference in the world. She was such a wonderful woman–strong, intelligent, independent, and loving. Annie, you left us too soon; we love you and we’re going to miss you so much.
Tom & Mary Beth Smedinghoff