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Edited Tuesday afternoon, October 7, 2008

The thread below was started on Saturday evening as some of Mary Ann's friends became aware of her unexpected setback after cancer surgery.

For those friends who are reading this thread now for the first time, before you read through the many pages, I must share the heartbreaking news that Mary Ann passed away on Monday evening.

So many of us are filled with grief and emptiness at the loss of our very dear friend. Quite a few of our members had the pleasure of knowing Mary Ann beyond her public posts, either through PM's, e-mails, by phone, or having the privilege of meeting her in person. Many of you will share in the pages below how Mary Ann was the first person to warmly, kindly contact you privately to say "I see you are having a hard time, take comfort in this..." and to go on to share her caring advice or just a word of loving support. I know that I have many examples of how Mary Ann did that for me, and in the past few days I have received more messages of how Mary Ann was just helping someone right before her surgery.

We are all so saddened by this loss, many of us having a hard time believing it, and I was left speechless by it as I tried to absorb the news. But I wanted to post this note at the top of the thread to share the following with the few who might not know:

Amid our tears and emptiness, we have this shining ray of hope and joy: Mary Ann was a Christian with a deep and constant faith in her heavenly Father. She knew Jesus Christ as her Savior, and gave us a glimpse of Christ's love in her kind and compassionate ways. Yesterday we lost a wonderful friend. I keep wanting to turn to Mary Ann to talk about this grief but of course she is the one we lost. Mary Ann has gone to her heavenly home; she is resting in paradise today. All our love to you, Mary Ann.


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From Mary Ann's signature:
The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.
Deuteronomy 31:8
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Posted Saturday Oct. 4:

Friends, this is very difficult to type, but we need all of your prayers now for Mary Ann, AKA FutureBack.Mom.

Mary Ann had surgery this past week for lung cancer, and took a turn for the worse last night. Her family is very worried, and we just need your prayers for her healing.

Please pray now.

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Oh,my goodness, Mary Ann, you have my complete attention to prayer and thought until you have made it over the hump to being released home.
You are in my constant prayer and thought.
Love You,
Wish you didn't hurt so bad, I truly hope and pray and wish that I may take away your pain and bring it on to myself, let it can do it. You have so much to live for, you know that already.

No significant change in the news so far today, but for friends who are wondering, here is a recap of what has happened up until now.

Mary Ann had part of one lung removed last Monday because of cancer. On Friday she was having a very difficult time and the doctor discovered pneumonia in her other lung. She is on a ventilator and sedated while the doctors treat the pneumonia and hope for enough recovery for her to be able to breathe without the ventilator.

Susan (CatchMm) will be visiting Mary Ann's family in the hospital today and hopes to have more news for us.

Originally posted by iheartbb:
We may have to reach out beyond our hsbbweb group.
If your church has a prayer group just for this type of situation, please contact them and have Mary Ann included.

iheartbb, I agree and have already done so. There are many folks here in TN, MS and beyond, in addition to the HSBW and her church family, etc... praying for Mary Ann and the entire family. I dare say we would be astounded at the number of people lifting her up in prayer, just glance at how many she has touched on our website here alone.
Last edited by Still Learning
Also posted in the Ladies Lounge -

It is with great sadness that I pass along this email, which I received from a mutual friend about our own Future Back Mom, aka Mary Ann Shappi.

At 7:20PM, Monday evening, Mary Ann passed away. She was peaceful and I am grateful I was allowed to visit with her and hold her hand. Her services will probably be this weekend but I will let you know when I talk to Katie later today. Her family is at the house and resting at this time.

You can send cards or notes to Marv, AJ, Katie and her MaryAnn's mother Gloria, at 5377 Paseo Tortuga, Yorba Linda, CA 92886.

Thanks everyone for your support for her family and your continued prayers. This was such a shock, none of us expected this when she came through the surgery so well.
I was fortunate enough to spend time with Mary Ann, swap stories, and even see wonderful pictures of AJ and Katie's wedding. She was great fun, feisty and caring, and had a heart big enough to encompass three generations as she had her AJ and her adored Katie, a sick mother, and Marv to care for, even though she had a laundry list of physical problems even before that d*mn tumor presented.

We'd talk on the phone and she'd share her experience and wisdom, for which I am grateful.

Her faith was strong; she will have found the peace and ease to watch over her family. I hope her family, and AJ in particular, feels her presence with him for always.

Thanks for the memories, Mary Ann.
But, right now, my heart hurts, with thoughts of both you and Doug, taken away from this community far too soon.
My son was teasing me a couple days ago about my virtual reality friends on HS baseball web. I was telling him about Mary Ann and how that even though i didnt know her I felt a kinship as i do with many that post here.I posted this exact post and then erased it. Last night I had said that I have had anxiety the last couple days thinking about Mary Ann. Last night I asked before I erased that God always knows best. Mary Ann believed and she is in the arms of God and I know how hard it is for the family esp, the kids losing their mother, and husband a wife. I have been through loss and it hurts to the core.I am so very sorry for her family and I am very sad this morning. God bless All
What a sad day for us all at HSBBW

I KNOW Mary Ann is in a great place.

For her family:

I lift up my eyes to the hills - where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip - He who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, He who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord watches over you - the Lord is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will keep you from all harm- He will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.

Psalm 121
The "LOBBY" will never be the same, as we are now missing one of our founding members. The LOBBY is a group of baseball moms who met here on this wonderful site 6 years ago, and formed a special kinship....our self-named acronym stood for "Ladies of BaseBall -- YO!"...and I remember MA getting a chuckle out of that as it made us sound "pretty cool" for a group of moms! Smile And thru this group of wonderful moms, Mary Ann was certainly a leader when it came to support and strength thru troubling times for each of us. I consider myself fortunate that I got to spend a wonderful weekend with her and my other LOBBY members in CA, talked with her numerous times on the telephone, and exchanged emails pretty much on a daily basis until her health took a turn for the worse.

In this terribly sad moment, I do find comfort in knowing that Mary Ann had such an incredible faith and I'm sure that knowledge is helping both her family and her friends in mourning her passing. God Bless MA......The LOBBY will miss you. But if I know are already starting a new LOBBY up in heaven Smile.
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Obviously, God needed another Baseball Angel to look over all of us here, new and old posters.
I went back and previewed several of her previous posts. Wow! What a great lady and mother she must have been. As a new member, I will miss her caring insight and gentle advise.
To the family: I know you are greiving and we feel your pain but be blessed in the knowledge that Mary Ann had so many friends.
What a great place this is, there is no other community on the internet as strong or cares about others like the HSBBW.

I hope that eventually her family comes on to see how much she will be missed, by the Old Timers as well as our new websters. For those who did not know FBM please do a search and read her posts. It will give you an insight as to why we love this place, the game, our players and her faith in God and why baseball moms are special.

My condolances to the entire Shappi family.

Dear Friends,
Although I haven't posted in a few years, my son is not playing anymore, I still pop on occasionally to see how the world of HS Baseball is doing.

MaryAnn has been part of my life for many years and Marv and I laugh at the whole 'connection' with other Baseball Mom's. MaryAnn and I were fortunate to actually SEE many of the Mom's we 'met' here in this community.

I promise to print this thread and give it to Marv, AJ, and her Mother. I know they don't realize how many people she has touched over the years here in the baseball family.

I know they appreciate your continued prayers for peace and healing.

Blessings to you all.
Susan aka: CatchMm
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Sad Day...I exchanged a couple of PM's with her recently...and before that, a couple of years ago. I did not know her personally, but we belong to the same "family". She was a tremendous encouragement and a joy to "talk" with in those few short posts.

May the Lord bless you and take good care of you...
May the Lord smile on you and be gracious to you...
May He look on you with favor, Shappi's, and give you His peace.
Oh God, We are stricken with immense grief at the loss of Mary Ann. We pray to God Almighty for her soul and we express our condolence and prayers to her distressed family. Let the Almighty Lord send his heavenly angels and comfort the agonized family. The loss is great for us, but let us abide in the great purpose God has destined for her in heaven. Let us remember the Mary Ann fondly and warmly,and let our prayers strengthen the family.

Today, as in many days, I struggle with the will of the Master.
I am left at this moment not knowing what to say. I just logged on to see if there was an update on Mary Ann.

Mary Ann and I exchanged emails many times during her battles with health. If there is one thing that I can say I took away from those conversations, it was that she had a faith in God that was powerful and should bring a source of strength to her family at this time. She was never bashful about sharing that faith. She also talked of her husband, son and daughter in law with such joy and pride, that one always had to be touched.

Mary Ann, you will be missed by many more than I'm suspect most of us here will ever know. However, all of us here will certainly know the void you leave behind in your baseball home.

Rest in peace sweet lady.
This is a very sad day for me, to say the very least. Mary Ann was outgoing and welcoming to me as we went through the recruiting process, and later on. We corresponded occasionally sharing good baseball days and bad. She was so very rightfully proud of AJ and Katie, both academically and athletically. She did an awesome job as a mom.

Rest In Peace Mary Ann.

Last edited by Dad04
For me, and I am sure for so very many of us, Mary Ann Shappi, aka FutureBack.Mom, aka HighlanderMom brought rays of baseball sunshine into her posts and our daily discussions of this game that brings us together.
We will miss her but don't think we will forget her affection for the HSBBW, her cyber friends and most of all the love she proudly posted for AJ, his wife, and her husband and family.
My thoughts are with her family for the joy she brought into their lives and my deepest sympathies for their loss
I would imagine FBM might well be working that big GM in heaven for AJ to get that first MLB appearance. Wouldn't that be something?
Would not surprise me a bit.
Last edited by infielddad

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