In Loving Memory
1961 – 2011
The BIS Benefits family has lost a great friend. On October 25, 2011 Christine Carranza of Alpharetta, Georgia passed from this life. In addition to her husband, Rick, and a young son, Michael, she leaves behind family and friends—including her family of co-workers at BIS Benefits.
In December, 2006 Christine Carranza joined the BIS Benefits team as a Marketing Associate. In this role she assisted one of our Account Managers in meeting the needs of clients. She communicated regularly with nearly 50 clients and gathered needed information from insurance carriers for them.
Several words could be used to describe Christine. “Gratitude” is one of those words. Christine always expressed appreciation for her job. She was a grateful person. The HR Director at BIS said, “Out of everyone we hired during my 7 years at BIS, no one showed more gratitude for ‘getting’ the job than Christine.” At her first job interview with BIS she wanted the job and she made it clear she wanted it. She repeatedly thanked us for giving her the opportunity to interview. She eagerly told us she would be a dedicated and faithful employee. She was willing to learn the role and tackle new challenges. Her gratitude and this enthusiastic determination is what sold us on Christine.
Her gratitude, however, didn’t stop there. Through the years of her employment, she communicated how grateful she was to not only have a job, but to be able to work with the team at BIS Benefits. We were blessed by her expressed gratitude.
Christine’s role was not always easy and comfortable, yet she engaged it willingly. Her job required highly detailed data and tedious attention. Yet, John Schmidt—the Account Manager to whom she reported to—said, “She never complained.” If she completed her work she would ask “What else can I do to help?” She was eager to take on new responsibilities and learn.
Not only was Christine engaged in her work, she was committed to doing her job right. Her aim was “No mistakes.” As the president of the firm, Ray Bachman, once said, “She was extremely conscientious about her work; she wanted to make sure she did exactly what was needed.” She did not want to inconvenience anyone and even in her sickness seemed to be more concerned about us than she was about her own health. This is one of the things we at BIS remember most about the days when Christine was working in our office. From the moment she was diagnosed with cancer to the day she left for her first major surgery, she was a committed and faithful employee, determined to do her best on the job and not to let us down. We were concerned for her, yet she wanted to make sure she wasn’t inconveniencing us. We had to remind her often that her own health took priority over the work in the office.
Christine was a “team-player.” If she was needed to assist others outside her specific role, she did it gladly and eagerly. When our receptionist was away, Christine was known for being the first person to respond to phone calls and to be the first to “jump up” and greet guests who entered our offices. One small example of her helpfulness was when she loaned her car to another employee when his car was being repaired. As one coworker said, “She would do anything for anyone and she wanted nothing in return.” This willingness to help others is one of the reasons why she was so well loved by our team.
Another amazing trait about Christine at the office was her positive attitude. In our business we sometimes talk with people who are not very happy with the cost of their insurance or the regulations of insurance carriers. Sometimes these callers are difficult to converse with, yet Christine would treat them with respect, patience and understanding. She represented BIS well with her professionalism.
All of us at BIS knew there was more to Christine than work. She talked of her former days with the cruise lines, sailing, and gardening. But, far above those topics were the conversations about Michael. We knew about Michael, and not just from the casual mentions of a mom about her son. It was obvious from her conversations he was the joy of her life. When we asked some of our employees to share some of their memories of Christine in our office, repeatedly one of the first comments was “she loved Michael.” One of her co-workers, Debbie Green, who worked near Christine said, “It is always so evident how much she loves being a mom and how much she loves Michael. She just glows when she talks about him. He is her reason for waking up each morning. She loved to share stories and cute things that he had said. She was very protective of Michael and if he was not happy she was not happy.”
We have a lot of great memories of Christine. We remember her gratitude, positive attitude, determination, commitment to “getting it right,” her unselfish helpfulness and her love for her family. However, for us at BIS Benefits, she was a friend; a good friend; a caring friend. Even in her sickness, the first words out of her mouth were, “How are you? How is your family?”
Christine Carranza was well loved by her coworkers at BIS Benefits and is sorely missed. We ask that you join us in keeping Christine’s family in your prayers as they move forward.
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” –Jesus
Gospel of John 14: 1-3