Kirstin Meredith Grant, 50, Audubon, MN, slipped peacefully away July 14, 2021, at Bethany on S University Drive, Fargo, ND. Kirstin was born November 4, 1970, at Moorhead, MN to Ordell and Luan (Schuman) Grant, the first born child and first grandchild on both sides.
Precocious from the start she lived large and always in the fast lane! Walking at nine months, and reading well before starting kindergarten, she could light up a room with her big personality, Nordic blue eyes, platinum blonde hair and infectious laughter. She was determined, intelligent, funny, competitive and up for any challenge, and sometimes SHE was the challenge!
Her Dad was her hero and she was well loved by doting grandparents and extended family. Her childhood shenanigans were legendary, her interests varied and if she did something, she was “all in”. Getting a drivers license at 14 only meant moving faster, especially in her Dad’s Corvette.
In grade school she befriended a neighbor boy who was bullied on the bus and when a school program introduced her to people who used sign language and Braille to communicate, she taught herself, and then pals, to sign. Introduced to orchestra in the fifth grade, she chose the stringed bass, because in her words “there was only one!”
For 40 years, summers were spent at Little Cormorant Lake. She always wanted to be the first one in the water every spring and the last one to swim in the fall.
A 1989 graduate of Fargo South High, she found a group of “granolas” that also played in orchestra, excelled in academics, enjoyed games, and became life-long friends dubbing themselves “The Orchestra Geeks”. A job with CCRI during college at Moorhead State University (MSUM), ignited her passion for equality for individuals with disabilities. Always choosing the scenic route, she began working additionally with Ventures Travel, facilitating supported vacations for adults with developmental disabilities. With diverse interests, her college career lasted ten years, culminating in 1999 with a degree in Special Education.
In addition to direct cares, while at CCRI, Kirstin also did grant writing. In June 2000 she was named Community Integration Coordinator, with a fully funded 2-year grant from Bremer Bank, to integrate the individuals she loved and served into all the “fun stuff” in the community. The program she initiated continues to make life richer and more diverse for many.
Caregiving came naturally to Kirstin and she touched many lives in various public and private settings, until continuing health issues, multiple surgeries and repeat hospitalizations, required her to become the one needing care. Her “Cheers Bar” became Essentia Hospital, where everybody knew her name, or at least her reputation. She was loved by many, feared by some, but respected by all for her big heart and determination.
Her faithful friends, many of them caregivers, and especially her God-daughter Jade Biggers, made those last six months of hospitalization bearable. When medical options were exhausted, Kirstin graciously and bravely faced the future, not with sad goodbyes, but simply a “see you later alligator”……
Kirstin was loved in life and is preceded in death by her father, Ordell, Grandparents Oliver and Clara Grant, Great-grandpa Peder Ekre, Kindred, ND; Glenn and Lucille Schuman Gilbertsville, KY; Great-grandparents Elvin and Florence Bernhardson Shelly, MN; Great-grandma Daisy Schuman, Minnewaukan, ND.
She is survived by her best friend and sister, Amanda Grant, Fargo, ND, mother Luan Schuman, Audubon, MN, uncles Paul Grant, James (Jo Webster) Schuman, aunts Marinell (Larry) Holst and Cheryl (Edward) Borg-Breen, cousins Jonathan, Katie and Anne; God-children Jade and Drake (Savannah) Biggers and a large, loving group of friends and extended family.
Kirstin lived her life with the knowledge that in a world where you can be anything…be kind!
A visitation will be held on Thursday, September 9, 2021, from 5:00-7:00 p.m. with a prayer service beginning at 7:00 in Wright Funeral Home, Moorhead, MN.
A memorial service will be held Friday, September 10, 2021, at 2:00 p.m. with a visitation one hour before the service at Wright Funeral Home.
A livestream of the service will be available here on Kirstin’s page along with a video tribute and online guestbook.
Memorials directed to family will be given to Kirstin’s chosen organizations to foster youth orchestra and to enhance the lives of individuals with disabilities.