My friendship with Ashley Graziano meant a lot to me, so I wanted to share just how amazing of a person and friend she was. I was very lucky that our paths crossed.
Ashley was kindness, grit, and grace personified. It sounds cliché to say, but she lit up every room she walked into – though she didn’t always believe that.
Her beauty was outmatched by her humility and the genuine love that she had for people. She cared… like, she actually cared about listening to the minutiae of peoples’ lives, their problems, their wins, their upcoming trips, their drive to work that morning. I know this because she was once my colleague, more than my colleague, she was one of my best friends.
Have you ever met someone that you felt an *instant* connection with? I was lucky enough to have that with Ashley. It was friendship at first sight. We were already finishing one another’s sentences after two weeks of working together.
Part of it was that Ashley and I were assigned to all of the same projects. But our friendship grew deeper than work. We spent hours talking about food, skincare, marriage, life.
2019 came and it was a weird year. We were each getting married and couldn’t be happier about it. But a variety of difficult, non-wedding things happened to us both that year: it was a year filled with a strange mix of grief, anger, gratitude, and laughter.
Leaning on each other got us both through some hard times and built a true friendship.
These words feel futile when thinking about how painful it is to know that we will not meet again. Ashley, thank you for being a light in the lives of your friends and family. Your fierce dedication to your work, to your husband, and above all, to your daughter, is an inspiration. You sometimes doubted your abilities but you were the most talented person I have ever met. Rest In Peace my beautiful friend. You will NEVER be forgotten.