Editor’s note: This is the first in a series of four stories–one on each of the 2013 Amway Hero Award Winners. The awards were given in the categories of Determination, Generosity, Leadership and Patriotism. Renee DiSilva was given the Amway Hero Award for Determination. We hope her story inspires you as much as it did us.
Renee DiSilva has endured more tragedy in the last decade alone than most of us will face in a lifetime.
One year ago, following the untimely death of both of her parents, Renee’s husband Alan, the love of her life, was killed in a car accident.
“I had a choice of whether I’d let this end my life. Whether I’d do nothing and let it defeat me. But I want to be an example of being able to overcome. I want to be strong.”
Somehow, through it all, Renee was able to persevere and become that example of courage and strength.
Alan had been by Renee’ side through the death of her parents. Together, the DiSilvas had built a successful Amway™ independent business while raising their two children, 4-year-old son Gabriel and 3-year-old daughter Anjali.
Following Alan’s death in February, 2013, everything changed. That’s when Renee’s network of family and friends lifted her up, giving her the support she needed to carry on.
“I knew I could not have handled this tragedy without God’s grace and love,” she says, “and without the amazing people in my life who opened up their hearts to grieve and walk this journey with me.” Many cared for her in practical ways: cleaning the house, watching the kids, praying, and just being there. “I didn’t cook a meal for two months!” she says. “It truly is a success story of people’s amazing hearts, compassion, and love.”
After Alan’s accident, Renee concentrated on grieving and healing, and allowed the family Amway business to slow down.
Then, she says, something unexpected happened.
The BODYKEY by NUTRILITE™ 90-Day Weight Loss Challenge gave her a positive goal to focus on and a chance to reconnect with others. Her team won a prize for their success with the BODYKEY challenge, losing a total of 69 pounds and 138 inches.
Now, Renee has renewed her goal to become a Diamond in her Amway business. Her team helped her through the hard times in the past, and they are still at her side today. Renee is determined to be an inspiration to all of them, and especially to her children. “I’m going to have to rise up from this, so my kids can rise up, too.”
Congratulations on your Amway Hero Award for Determination, Renee. You are an inspiration to us all.