I "met" Esther, seven years ago when she still wrote up her blog called Ishtar's Ark. Later on she primarily used Facebook to write about her life in Africa. The Garvi's (Arne and Bettan) founded the Eden Foundation in Scandinavia in 1985. In 1987, they left all that was comfortable behind them, landed in Africa and traveled with their three young children, Esther, Josef and Mirriam, across the desert to settle in one of the poorest countries on the continent, Niger. Please do click on the links to read about what this phenomenal family has accomplished in West Africa.
Bettan Garvi, who was inspired to help every child in her community attend school, established The Bettan Garvi School Initiative. When Bettan died in 2008, Esther continued her mom's dream.
Esther was a keen horsewoman, a multi-linguist and she loved animals, especially Rhodesian Ridgebacks. I followed her blog avidly because of this.
When you read the many, many condolences and posts on her Facebook page this weekend, you realize that the shock waves - at her untimely and tragic passing - ran through across the globe from the US, Canada and Europe down through Africa.
As fellow-blogger, Gaelyn of Geogypsy said on FB, "Esther gave so much of herself to others, it's hard to believe she's been taken from the world." When I shared the terrible news with Grant on Sunday morning, all he could say was: "What a terrible waste of a young and vibrant life"
RIP, beautiful Esther.