Seattle is mourning the death of local TV anchorwoman Kathi Goertzen, who died Monday from brain tumors she's been battling for 14 years. She was 54.
Colleagues and the entire city of Seattle filled the Internet with remembrances of Goertzen, a native of the Emerald City.
"I had the privilege of working with Kathi for 18 years at KOMO. She was the heart of that newsroom, and the soul of this community," wrote John Sharify of KING 5 News. "There are no words that can express how much we will miss her. I can't imagine a world without Kathi Goertzen."
In a touching post on the website of the Seattle Times, op-ed columnist Lynne Varner called Goertzen "the consummate journalist.
"The outpouring of sorrow and love from those bidding the veteran journalist adieu is heartwarming," Varner wrote. "She deserves every single adjective linked to her name right now. Fearless, courageous, strength, perseverance, class, funny, friendly, accessible."
Goertzen's health issues took a grim turn late last week when the aggressive tumors caused her to be unable to breathe on her own, according to the Yakima Herald.
Goertzen tackled her tumors in a public way, airing a story on KOMO about her journey in a piece titled, "Kathi's Courage." The story also touched on Goertzen's efforts to launch her foundation.
"Some days, it's easier than others. Some days, I feel good and I feel like I can conquer the world. Others it's just enough to put one's foot in front of the other and make a step forward and not to give up."
One of Goertzen's many surgeries to treat the tumors caused paralysis on the right side of her face. But Goertzen took the development in stride, even using humor to cope with the effects of the tumors.
"First I looked a little bit like The Joker, but I'm O.K. now. I'm fine," she said. "It still doesn't work but it looks a little bit better and it feels a little better."
In the interview, which can be viewed here on The Kathi Goertzen Foundation website, Goertzen gushed about her passion for journalism.
"I love my business. I love the news and I love journalism," she said. "Whenever I see a breaking news story I always go into my journalism mode. That's in my blood and if I didn't have this ... you lose some purpose in your life."
Goertzen won five Emmys and an Edward R. Murrow award in a career that included covering the eruption of Mt. St. Helen's and the fall of the Berlin Wall.