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College Park Patch (Evans) Funeral Service

Loved Ones Gather to Remember Michelle Humanick

The 44-year-old mother of two lived life to the fullest

By Lauren Evans | July 30, 2010
(c) 2010 College Park Patch

The University of Maryland Memorial Chapel is not a small place. But it was nearly full on Friday morning when hundreds of friends and family members of Michelle Humanick gathered for her funeral mass.

Humanick was killed Sunday when powerful winds caused a tree to snap, crushing the hood of her minivan. Her mother-in-law, Sue Lantz, was in the passenger seat of the car but was released from the hospital Monday with minor injuries.

Humanick was one of four people killed in the Mid-Atlantic storm, including a 6-year-old boy in Loudon County.

The Catholic mass took place at 10:30 a.m. and was led by Father Robert Walsh, the chaplain at the University of Maryland's Catholic Student Center. It featured readings from the books of Isaiah, Romans and Matthew. Clay Gump, Humanick's husband, gave the eulogy.

Gump began by mentioning that the couple's close friend, John Romano, had commented that such a tragedy was "utterly unfair." But Gump begged to differ.

"Life is fair because life just is … no more, no less," he said. "Nobody promised us that life would work out just the way we planned. Life is fair because it is only by feeling the deepest sorrow that we can truly feel great joy."

Gump also spoke of his wife's great passion for swimming, saying that, "the water was where she found her balance, her strength, her peace." He talked about the great joy she took in cooking, be it serving a giant Thanksgiving feast or just a simple salad from her garden.

"For Michelle, cooking was all about love," he said.

But her greatest love was for her family and friends. Being a mother, Gump said, was more important to her than anything in the world.

"Our two little girls gave Michelle a joy … that was on her face every single day," he said.

As for his relationship with his wife, Gump said, "She filled my spirit and made me whole. So life is fair. I've spent the last 20 years with the woman of my dreams. And I'll take that deal every single time."

An account on the website Lotsa Helping Hands was started as a way for friends and neighbors to aid the Gump family in the coming months. But Pam Lever, a longtime family friend and organizer of the account, said that so many people signed up to help that there are more people than tasks for the moment.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Michelle Humanick Memorial Fund, c/o Juliet Johnson at Suntrust Bank, 2825 Smith Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21209, (410-602-9109).