The Cardinal easily stood in front of Cindy Humble as he sat on a pine tree in the backyard of his Chapman Street home in Jamestown. Not because the dead tree lacked pine needles that might otherwise have hidden the bird a little better.
Instead, it was the unmistakable chirping that caught his attention.
“Imagine, in winter, it’s sitting there,” Humble said of the cardinal. “It was the most beautiful song.”
In the midst of many dark days following her daughter’s death last December, inspired by the humble pretty bird and other signs, she turned her grief into art and helped others who were going through tough times.
“I was having a bad day after he left, and I had very bad days,” Humble, 68, said in the morning he saw and heard the red cardinal. “It was definitely a sign.”
It was only six months earlier that their daughter Morgan was diagnosed with stage 4 liver cancer.
When the news became clear when the Roswell Park Cancer Center was called before the test results came out, it was a blow to the family. At 30, Morgan watched what she ate and was in excellent shape. In fact, Humble referred to his daughter from Brockton as the mermaid because she loved being around the water for both sports and leisure.
To help with medical costs during Morgan’s treatment, the family hosted a volleyball fundraiser. During that incident, Humble said a “Complete stranger” Contacted and told her how Morgan had saved her life. The girl, who said she was suffering from depression, had talked about her problems with Humble’s daughter.
“I was so shocked,” Humble said about learning information, something his daughter never told.
Morgan Ashley Humble passed away on December 18, 2021 – 11 days before her 31st birthday. She was survived by her parents, Cindy and Scott; a brother, Eric; and her fiancée, Dale Wiberg of Brockton.
According to his obituary: “Morgan was a shooting star who quickly burned out. His smile lit up a room and people were drawn to him like a worm is like a flame.”
The humble said of his daughter’s death, “It was a real dark time. Neither of us felt like we wanted to move on. We felt a lot of hopelessness and hopelessness.”
Born in 1990, Morgan loved the outdoors. She was an avid swimmer and also enjoyed camping and hiking. After some encouragement, he trained for “Big Fish Triathlon” in DeWittville in 2017; She came first in her age group.
About five years ago, Humble participated in a “Paint and Sip” Event in Jamestown. It was here that he was first introduced to acrylic painting, and “A new passion was born.”
She began searching Pinterest and YouTube to replicate the artwork, sometimes using a tutorial. That said, acrylic paints are great for beginners because mistakes can be made.
A year later, after taking a series of classes with Susan Giannantonio at Mayville, she delved into watercolor.
“It seemed that water and paint had a life of their own,” Humble said. “The way they flowed and mixed on the paper was like magic. Watercolor is not as forgiving as acrylic and with some art ending up in the trash is sometimes impossible.
“But the thrill of seeing vibrant color lighten up when dry always surprises me.”
After her daughter’s death, Humble admitted that she denied the anger and experience she experienced during the grieving process. When Morgan was ill, she also questioned her faith.
“There was a time when I was feeling angry with God, asking why aren’t you using all this prayer and healing him?” he said.
But then there were signs—the chirping cardinal still hanging around her yard and the clear-as-a-day angel wings she saw in the clouds one day.
Renewed by his faith and love for art, Humble started posting some of his works on Facebook. Word of mouth through his church helped spread the story about Humble’s daughter and how the painting helped her cope.
When Humble came to know that someone was going through a similar struggle, she used to send a painting.
“During those dark days I started painting the red cardinals,” he said. “If I heard of someone experiencing a loss, I would send them a cardinal painting as a sign of hope. My painting began to take on a purpose and the quality of my art improved. I gifted many pieces of art.” But in return the pictures saved me from depression and loneliness. ”
Since February, the Jamestown resident has given away 15 to 20 paintings—many of which feature a red cardinal, though she also enjoys drawing owls and other animals.
Humble’s artwork is currently on display at the Faulkner Public Library through September. By the end of last week, 50 pieces of his work were on display in the library at 101 W Main St. in the village.
a “Meet the Artist” The Open House featuring Humble will be in the library from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturdays.
The library is open Monday through Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; And call 716-665-3504 for more information on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.