Today, I write about the recent passing of my dear friend Kari Dangler.
Where, how, to begin?
How about at the beginning?
Riding my bicycle through Key West's Bayview Park one morning, I noticed an attractive fifty or so woman sitting on the ground against the chain link fence that encloses part of the basketball court. She had a daypack. She looked homeless. I kept going. The next day, she was there again. I stopped and spoke to her. Told her my name. She told me her name. I said she was homeless and she wasn't supposed to be there, something was wrong. She said how did I know she was homeless? I said I had been homeless in Key West and I know what homeless people look like.
I was renting a room in the home of a friend and was running out of money and eating at the local soup kitchen each afternoon. That afternoon, I saw Kari at the soup kitchen sitting at a picnic table with a few other homeless people. There was an empty seat at the table and I asked if I could join them? Kari said, yes. It went that way every day for a while.
I learned all about street drugs from Kari and other homeless people. She said she didn't use them, her drug of choice was vodka. She smoked cigarettes. My mother had smoked two packs of Pall Malls a day since age 15, to rebel against her Puritan parents, she told me. She got up each morning drinking screwdrivers - orange juice and vodka - and went to bed drinking them. My father, too.
My mother cured me of smoking even one cigarette. She died of lung cancer during my 2nd year of law school. By the time I met Kari, I was intolerant to any form of alcoholic beverage. One glass of red wine at dinner caused my gut to scream in a few hours and my liver to scream even louder the next day. Yet, there was something about Kari that really attracted me.
She could be funny as hell. She had a sense of humor. She was savvy. She had been around, clearly. I yet had no clue just how much she had been around. All of that, and her many scrapes with the local law enforcement and judicial establishments, which were trying to drive all homeless people to the mainland, and with various weird, colorful and sometimes mean people, and many of her dreams, visions and visits from angels, I published at this blog, and before that at goodmornngkeywest.com, which died and went to heaven, or somewhere.
I hoped it would somehow work out and Kari and I would be a couple. We sure tried, but it was not meant for us to be a couple in the traditional way. But, my goodness, did we have lots of adventures together.
I went homeless, again, during that time. Then, I got some relief from my father’s estate, and was able to live inside again.
Kari and I visited here and there in Key West and talked often on our flip phones. We continued talking by phone after I moved back to Alabama in late 2018.
After Kari’s stepfather died last year, 2021, she viewed him as her father, I gave her Greyhound fare to go to be with her mother in Missouri. Her bus came through Birmingham and we got to visit about 15 minutes. We continued talking often on the phone after she reached Missouri.
It was not easy between Kari and her mother, but I really did feel they needed to be together, and I knew it would not work for Kari and me to live together.
Today is Thursday, April 7.
On Monday, April 4, I received this text from Kari’s mother:
So sorry to tell you Kari died yesterday of a massive seizure. I am devastated.
I texted back:
So sorry. In Key West I saw Kari have numerous small seizures. I hoped living with you would take stress off her. I figured not drinking would take more stress off her. I hoped all of that and spending some time with Loni (Kari's daughter) and her children would help Kari heal. Losing Loni unhinged Kari. She told me you were pushing her to leave, her bags were packed and she would be homeless again. I knew it would not work for her and me to live together. She told me for months of numerous steady dreams and visions she was having about her past, some of which made her feel good, and others upset her. She was devastated she did not get to tell her father, your husband, goodbye before he died. I told her she was having a life review before she crossed over, and I didn't know why. Living on the street again would have destroyed her in all ways. Her soul, God, angels - she reported many experience with the latter after I met her - decided her very difficult time on this world was over. I wish I had gotten to talk with her again. Last time we talked, 3 days ago, I got onto her about waiting all of a day to tell me about an important dream she had about me. I hope she and her father, your husband, are together and in better places. I hope God provides you solace and comfort. I wonder if Loni would like for you to live near her?
Kari’s mother replied:
Thanks for your kind message. Yes, Loni would like me to move closer to her. It is a possibility.
I hope you do that and your home sells quickly so you can. I had hoped Kari could be part of that move. She and Loni really needed to reunite. Kari told me stories of when she was a portrait artist and she was seeing in her subjects things that scared her and that's why she gave up her art. I encouraged her to return to her gift, I would buy her art supplies. I felt that would help her heal. She was the second artist I was with, who had given up her gift. The first returned to it. Life can throw us for loops. Kari got thrown lots of loops that didn't seem fair to me. David Dangler, I'd liked to have had some words with him.
The dream Kari had about me was I was on a black horse shooting rabbits. A few days before, Kari had dreamed I was speaking to a lot of rabbits, whose ears were tilted toward me in full attention. I thought the shooting rabbits dream was a message that I was not doing something right in my writings. After getting the text from Kari’s mother, I thought the shooting rabbits dream meant I somehow was doing something to help Kari leave a totally no win predicament. In the past, I had helped two other people dear to me do that.
A few years ago, I introduced Kari to an old friend of mine, Gloria Reiser, who for many years was an intuitive and a professional psychic. After learning from me of Kari's death this past Sunday, Gloria emailed me:
Saturday late afternoon or early evening, I began experiencing something I never have before, and hope never to experience again. Different from feeling lightheaded and as if I might faint, different from a sense of vertigo, I felt a sporadic energy at the back of my head, somewhat like an electrical current, that seemed to want to "blip," and seemingly did "blip" for a microsecond a few times. Each "blip" was so swift that it was over before I realized it had happened. It felt something like malfunctioning erratic wiring. Instinctively I felt that if whatever energy this was "blipped out" completely, I would have a seizure or die. I was somewhat afraid to take a bath before going to bed, but did it anyway. During the night, when I would slightly wake and change position in bed, the strange feeling was briefly there. It became less frequent on Sunday (though I pretty much took it easy all day) then lifted early to mid evening on Sunday. This is why I'd like to know Kari's time of death. I'm wondering if I tagged into her health issue empathically through body sensations, rather than as an intuitive sensing or knowing, or dream.
I called Gloria and told her what she felt on Saturday was what was revving up in Kari. Gloria said, maybe. I said, no maybe, for sure. Glorida asked how I could be sure? I asked back, how she could be a pschic and not be sure?
Later same day, I emailed Gloria:
Thanks, according to text yesterday(Monday) from Kari’s mother, Kari died the day before(Sunday) of a massive seizure. If what you experienced kinetically the day before she died was not tagging into what was revving up in her, you should see a neurologist ASAP.
I saw Kari have many small seizures in Key Key West. I figured a big one might come some day.
Yep I know. If it happens again I will get checked pronto. However since at the time thoughts of seizure or death struck me and the issue began maybe approximately 24 hours or less before Kari died it could be that I was experiencing an empathetic awareness. It occurred to me today that many years ago I experienced bodily symptoms coinciding with something coming within hours for a friend. Obviously though this isn't my most frequent method of processing awareness of something happening or about to happen at a distance.
Yesterday morning, Wednesday, I called Gloria to ask if she’d had a dream about Kari? Gloria said she was just about to call me to tell me what she had dreamed about Kari. I asked Gloria to write it up and email it to me. Here is is:
I'm sitting, with my friend Kari, at a small table on a patio just outside of a door on the side of a charmingly beautiful small cottage. There are flowers all around - some in pots, some planted. The patio is made of large irregularly shaped, attractive, paving stones. I comment on the loveliness of the patio and the house and ask her "How did you find this wonderful place"? Kari replies, "I had to leave where I was." With her comment, I find myself suddenly stark awake.
I told Gloria to compare that dream about a person who died to a dream another friend had about a different friend of mine who died and was pondering whether he would go up or down? Looks to me Kari’s in pretty darn good shape, despite all her mostly really tragic life.
Later yesterday, Gloria told me she’d found an obituary saying Kari had died in a hospital on Sunday afternoon. I said, earlier yesterday, I played chess with a friend who pastors a rural church. I already had told him about Kari dying, and this time I described Gloria’s dream about Kari in the afterlife. I said Kari grew up going to church, but later she did not go to church, yet she seems to be doing very well in heaven.
I emailed Gloria this morning:
In the context of what all was in play, there is no other way to view what you experienced on Saturday, other than it was you feeling what was revving up in Kari, and it carried into Sunday afternoon, when Kari died. Another way to be sure is your spiritual guidance did not tell you to go post haste to neurologist.