RIP, Renee Pelletier Costa

by Bill Brenner on March 12, 2013

This morning I received the sad news that Renee Pelletier Costa passed away after a long and courageous battle against cancer.

Mood music:



Renee’s memorial service will be held Saturday, March 23, 1:30 at Faith Lutheran Church, 360 South Main St., Andover MA 01810

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the:
Renee L. Costa Memorial Fund, account #8371787589
Care of: TD Bank
280 Main Street
Groveland, MA 01834 or any local TD Bank branch.

Meanwhile, a new site called “Live Like Renee” has been established to raise funds for her family.


The last time I saw her was over the summer, when she dropped off a huge collection of Legos her children had outgrown. She made Sean and Duncan very happy that day, and I think it reflects her life pretty well. In the short time I knew her, that simple kindness was evident.

She touched many lives in her short time on this Earth. For me, she offered an everlasting example of living in the face of immense suffering. It always floored me how positive and giving she was even as she was slowly losing to cancer. “Losing” might not be the right word, though. She did, after all, live with cancer for the better part of a decade. She certainly lived longer than she was expected to.

What follows is something I wrote about her more than a year ago. I think the sentiments ring especially true now.

My deepest condolences to Renee’s husband, children, friends and extended family.


Oct. 20, 2011:

Renee Pelletier Costa of Haverhill starts another round of chemo today. She’s been very public about her battle with cancer, and has been a sturdy, shining example of how to live in the face of adversity.

Cancer has put her body through the wringer, but has failed to stop her positive attitude and sense of humor. On Facebook this morning, she wrote:

“I begin chemo again at 9:30. Sean says he’ll go with me and stay long enough to make sure I don’t die from anaphylaxis, then he’ll go to work. That’s how it goes when this becomes old hat.”

Judging from the responses to that comment, she has a strong circle of cancer-fighting friends. That’s one of the strange things about terrible diseases. You gain friends you never would have met if not for the sickness.

She also has a lot of friends around here who are rooting for her.

But you can never have enough prayers in times like these, so please take a moment and do your part.



{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Renee October 20, 2011 at 1:46 am

Bill, I’m very touched that you would use me in your blog! I’m glad to know that my sharing touches people in a positive and/or profound way. I have made a lot of new friends through this experience, and I am so grateful. I’ve also come to realize just how much I am loved by my family, church and established circle of friends. That’s one of the blessings to come out of living with cancer…..I get to hear NOW just how much. Sadly, most don’t show or say just how much they value, love and appreciate someone until it’s too late. They assume their loved ones will be there forever. Say it now. Show it at every chance. You never know.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: