All of us at Harlequin Heartwarming were deeply saddened when we heard that our dear Aimée recently passed away. We've gathered here today to share memories of our beloved friend and to celebrate the amazing, genuine person that she was. Please join us in remembering...
Remembering Aimée Thurlo
I wish I’d known Aimée better and longer. I’m fortunate she had a story she wanted to write that didn’t fit her long-time Intrigue series and because of Heartwarming, our paths crossed. What struck me most about Aimée is her passion, her enthusiasm. As now-retired Executive Editor Marsha Zinberg, who contracted her December Homespun Christmas, remembers: “She was so excited about her Heartwarming book…the subject matter and content, and was thrilled to have found a niche that seemed to so suit the ‘clean’ style she wanted to write in.”
Aimée’s passing took all of us by sad surprise, following her very short battle with cancer. According to her husband and writing partner, David, on Facebook, she was diagnosed Valentine’s Day after suffering from back pain and died Feb. 28. I can’t imagine what David is going through right now. It’s been very clear to anyone who knows them, or even knows of them, that they are devoted to each other. Their partnership, in love and career, has been remarkable.
Harlequin Intrigue Senior Editor Denise Zaza wrote on the Heartwarming Community boards a little about Aimée: that she was born in Havana, Cuba, and lived with David in Corrales, New Mexico, in a rural neighborhood filled with horses, alpacas, camels and other assorted livestock. And that David’s Navajo background inspired many of the Aimée Thurlo stories for Harlequin Intrigue.
Publisher’s Weekly wrote that Aimée was the author of more than 70 novels—romance, mystery and suspense—which is an enormous accomplishment. She has received a Career Achievement Award from RT Book Reviews, a New Mexico Book Award in contemporary fiction and a Willa Cather Award in the same category. Aimée Thurlo's last book for Harlequin will be published in late 2014, an Intrigue, Eagle’s Last Stand.
We are sad to lose Aimée—she will be greatly missed. David, you have our deepest condolences.
Aimée was the kind of person who greeted strangers as if you'd quickly become one of her best friends. It probably explains why she had so many, many friends.
Aimée jumped into the midst of the Heartwarming bloggers and immediately created an "I'm here and we're all friends" atmosphere. What a gift. She was an awesome writer and a real go-to person. The posts she wrote about she and David's romance show what love is—no wonder she wrote about it too. Happiness and contentment oozed off the pages.
I love the photo of Aimée and David because you can see the love that binds them beyond the time this earthly world gives us. I love that she fought so hard to be well and so enjoyed her working life with David and the dog that shared her office. I am very sad, but she seemed to so enjoy what she had that it's hard to feel badly. A life well lived and truly enjoyed must make God really happy.
Anyone who picked up an Aimée Thurlo book knew instantly she was a born storyteller. Her voice and spirit came alive on the page as if she were standing in front of you. We've lost a beautiful author, but more importantly we've all lost a tremendous person. Her work will live on for those who were able to escape in the stories and characters she created with her beloved David. You will be missed, Aimée. Thank you for sharing your gift with the world.
-Anna J. Stewart
I had read Aimée and David’s Intrigues but had never met them until they came on the Heartwarming Blog. Their stories were always interesting and moving, and I learned why through their blogs. I loved hearing Aimée talk about her love for their dogs and all animals. Her Christmas snowman sans snow made us laugh. All of her deep feelings for home, community and David were reflected in her blogs. And when I read Homespun Christmas I felt it showed a slice of her own life. It’s a story that will stand the test of time. And that’s nice.
-Roz Denny Fox
Aimée was a kind-hearted person and talented author. Her personal love story was an inspiration and my thoughts and prayers go out to her family and friends.
Aimée was a terrific person who was a great cheerleader for our Heartwarming line. She was generous in spirit when it came to sharing all sorts of ideas about promotion, always willing to promote her "Heartwarming sisters."
She was a lovely role model for love in real life, too—her romance with her husband David was an inspiration to me. I will miss her cheerful, generous spirit, and my prayers are with her family, who feel her loss all the more keenly.
Aimée was one of the warmest, most generous writers I have ever had the pleasure to meet. When she found out I was publishing my first romance novel, she sent me frequent emails to check in on me and offer me encouragement and much needed advice. It impressed me to no end that this highly successful, busy author would take time from her day to help someone like me. It shows just how kind and classy Aimée was. I looked at her as a role model (still do) of the kind of successful author I want to be someday- someone who will never be too important or too caught up in her own career to forget to help others. There will never be another person like her.
Aimée was a wonderful person and her relationship with David was a true inspiration. I've enjoyed seeing the pictures posted to Facebook in her memory this week. She will be missed.
Aimée's posts were fun and informative, always filled with joy. She will be missed.
I never met Aimée face to face, but I got to know her through her emails and her blog posts. She was funny and kind and very supportive for all of us in the Heartwarming sisterhood. Her love story with David deserves a book of its own. You will be missed, Aimée!
I'm feeling so heartbroken over Aimée's passing, and for David for losing his soul mate. Aimée's posts about the two of them left no doubt that that's what they were to one another. Just from getting to know her online, I knew she was an amazing, kind person. She gave me great advice and she had a way of making me feel good about myself. I know I’m not the only person she made feel that way. She had a gift for reaching out and giving, both to people and animals. I so wanted to meet her in person and know her better. I could tell that she was the kind of person I would have cherished as a best friend. I'll never forget her kindness and advice. There are no words for how sorry I am for her loss.
David Thurlo wrote a touching post announcing Aimée's passing, reassuring all who knew and loved her that she spent her final days where she truly wanted to be...at home, in peace, where he stayed by her side. Please take a moment to read his post at their website www.aimeeanddavidthurlo.com. Also, her obituary can be read HERE. Please take a moment to read it too, as she led a truly amazing and inspiring life.
Everyone who knew Aimée knew how much she loved animals and cared for their well being. She was avid supporter of the Humane Society and it is asked that any tributes please be made to Roswell Humane Society: http://www.roswellhumane.org/ or to the Humane Society as a whole: https://secure.humanesociety.org/site/Donation2?df_id=1505&1505.donation=form1&s_src=web_topnav_memory
Aimée, our dear Heartwarming sister, we love and miss you to no end. Rest in peace.