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2017: Lita and Rescue Bulldog, Sofia, toasting the new book

2017: Lita and Rescue Bulldog, Sofia, toasting the new book

Lita Eitner-England

Born December 10, 1958, Redwood City, CA / Died September 24, 2019, Fremont, CA

After battling Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer for 3 years, Cheryl Lita went home to be with her Lord and Savior.

Lita was born in Redwood City, and lived in Menlo Park for 31 years. After she married her husband, Garonn, she lived in Union City for 30 years. Besides her husband, she is survived by her daughter, Mica England, also of Union City.

Lita graduated from Menlo-Atherton High School, Menlo Park, in 1977. She graduated from San Jose State University With Great Distinction earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology in 1981 and received a second Bachelor’s Degree With Great Distinction in Television and Film in 1986.

She published two Young Adult Historical Fiction Novels, Bullmina the Courageous Bulldog in 2004, and its sequel, Bullmina the Courageous Bulldog to the Rescue in 2010. In Summer 2018, she finished her third and final book in the Bulldog Trilogy, Bullmina the Courageous Bulldog Comes Home, including short story Payasito (all books available through AuthorHouse Publishing).

As well as being a season ticket holder with the San Jose Opera for several years and a film aficionado, Lita was an avid rose gardener who enjoyed traveling and fine dining with friends. She also attended First Presbyterian Church of Newark and Centerville Presbyterian Church, Fremont, and frequently visited Park Blvd. Presbyterian Church, Oakland.

 

 
2004: Courtesy of Laura Marshall Photography, San Jose, CA

2004: Courtesy of Laura Marshall Photography, San Jose, CA

The late Tiffany Konishiki Bullman, or "Tiffy," is the beautiful, red brindle Bulldog sitting on the floor next to Lita, and, of course, she was the initial inspiration behind the Bullmina series. Lita's third book in the Bullmina Trilogy takes place in contemporary America, introducing the Evers and Weinberg families and other intriguing characters. The Englands lost their beloved Tiffy in 2009 to cancer. They adopted their rescue dog, Sofia, in 2013, and Sofia shares the inspiration behind Bullmina the Courageous Bulldog Comes Home.

 

 

Cancer Diagnosis

Tragically, Lita was diagnosed in April 2016 with occult, amorphic, de novo (hidden, without shape, right out-of-the-blue) Stage Four Terminal Cancer, which metastacized to her spine, brain, pelvis, hips, liver, kidneys, pancreas, abdominal lymph nodes, and just recently, her colon. Lita's cancer defied all previous preventive testing (pap smears, mammograms, etc.) and was only detected by a dye-infused, PET/CT scan where she lit up like a Christmas tree. Sadly about 5% of all cancer patients get these rare, undetectable, out-of-the-blue cancers. The "Whole Brain Radiation" sessions and the chemotherapy side effects were very hard on her, getting worse with each subsequent chemo IV infusion, but Lita continued to fight until the very end.

During her last months, Lita could barely see, had great difficulty walking across the floor by herself, and her memory started to go. But in her words, as long as she could “still see a little bit, get up and walk to the bathroom with her walker, and string two or three semi-coherent sentences together, it’s a good day.” Lita developed severe lymphedema in her arms and legs and had to wear uncomfortable compression garments. But with her humor still intact she kept things light, saying she had “Fred Flintstone feet,” tree stump thighs, and “Popeye the Sailor Man” forearms.

Lita was only given about 18 months to live, but pushed on to 3 well-fought years. She thanks her Lord and Savior for giving her the extra months to spend with her family and Sofia. And she will forever be grateful for the tremendous support from Garonn and Mica.

 

 

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