Toni Anderson was the friend at memorial services focused on lifting the spirits of others.
She won’t be able to do that Tuesday because the service will be for her.
“She’d be going, ‘Really? For me? Come on,’ ” Liz Anderson said of her 20-year-old daughter, who had been missing since Jan. 15.
Her car was pulled from the Missouri River a week ago Friday at Platte Landing Park near Parkville, Mo. She was inside the car.
Foul play is not suspected in Toni’s death. The most likely explanation, Liz Anderson has said, is that her daughter became confused in the early morning and ended up at the boat ramp in the park. She had been upset after being stopped by a North Kansas City police officer for a minor traffic violation.
Toni Anderson’s memorial service will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Risen Savior Lutheran Church, 6770 E. 34th St. North. The public is invited to attend, her mother said.
“A lot of people were very interested in the story,” she said. “A lot of people were praying for her.”
The service will be a celebration of Toni’s life. That means there will be a lot of laughter to go with the tears, her mother said.
Toni loved to laugh, just like her parents.
“Laughter would have to be a part of it, even though it’s sad,” Liz Anderson said. “The other night, my girlfriends and I were sitting around telling stories about her. We were just laughing our heads off.”
She needed that, Liz Anderson said, after the nearly two months of agonizing over why and how her daughter disappeared. Toni wouldn’t want people to be sad, her mother said.
“Toni was very much a giver,” she said. “Making other people feel happy … that was her personality.”