Obituary: Tiffany Gordon (aka T-Dog), 19, of Andover

Tiffany Thea Takara Gordon had the misfortune of being born with many congenital heart defects and other birth abnormalities that plagued her all of her life. Her heart only had two chambers instead of the usual four. Tiffany joked about only having half of a heart, but her life proved that her half had more capacity to love than most have with a completely whole heart.

Born on Feb. 16, 2000, Tiffany spent the first three months of her life in the hospital  receiving many surgeries both at Dartmouth Hitchcock Hospital and Boston Children’s Hospital. At that point, Social Services deemed that she should be in a foster home as soon as she could be discharged.

They contacted Harry (Sonny) and Helen Gordon because they had done foster care in the past and still had five kids at home that they had adopted. Tiffany was discharged into this home with the understanding that she would probably only live for a few weeks.

Tiffany was an overcomer right from the start. With some creative feeding tactics from Helen, Tiff started to improve and gain strength for additional procedures. Her last open heart surgery was when she was 10 years old. Tiffany seemed to start living out her calling the morning after that surgery. Accompanied by her father and an IV pole, she went from room to room in that ICU unit. Before she had left each room, the occupant of the bed was smiling by having their spirits lifted by Tiff.

She was a social butterfly, flitting from person to person and lighting up everyone she touched right to the very end. Tiffany always had her own unique agenda that no one could identify as quite normal, yet in the end she made sure it worked out.

Tiffany lived life to its fullest in spite of her many hospitalizations and medical issues. She loved to swim, ride motorcycles with her dad, play basketball, roller-skate and travel. She was good with phones and electronic devices and she loved painting and crafts. She was such a gift-giver and loved to make the perfect gift for everyone she knew. Her hospital rooms always looked more like an art classroom than a hospital room. The nurses called her the “glitter girl” because she really got into her crafts. You had to feel sorry for the staff that had to clean her rooms.

Tiffany did have a stubborn, feisty streak. Everyone who worked with her for any length of time experienced this, yet seemed to love her even more because of it. She made the best of her many hospital stays by her crafts and building relationships with most of the staff at the hospital. They had become like her second family. Tiffany also treated school the same way and worked her way into the hearts of all the staff people there as well.

Tiffany passed away on Nov. 19, 2019. She was predeceased by her mother Helen in 2017. She is survived by her father, Sonny Gordon and current “mom,” Lindelle Gordon of Andover. She is survived by siblings: Johnathan and Joseph Gordon, Ashley Rowe, Amanda Stillwell, Rachel Bucher, Raymond Gordon, Leah Gendron, Amanda Cleveland and Hannah Cleveland. She is also survived by 11 nieces and nephews. She also leaves grandmothers Janice Gordon and Barbara Mikkelsen and many aunts and uncles.

There will be a celebration of Tiffany’s life at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 1 at the First Baptist Church of Chester, 162 Main St.

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  1. Deborah Bates says:

    So unbelievably sorry for your loss. Tiff was one heck of a fighter and an amazing young lady. We always looked forward to her visits. She was part of our little family too and will be greatly missed.

  2. Toby Treu says:

    Dear Sonny, I was so sorry to read about Tiffany’s passing. I enjoyed having her as a student, she would come through the door with a big smile and visit with all her classmates!

  3. Jamie L says:

    I had the great pleasure of knowing this young lady. She was truly inspiring always wanting to keep living and helping others out. She volunteered at so many places while being so young and always brought happiness to all these places. I will definitely miss her smile and her cheer she always brought to everyone. The laughs we had will be great memories.

    Sorry for your loss. Thinking of the family.

  4. John Nunnikhoven says:

    The Tiff will be missed on many levels, but especially on a Lord’s Day morning when I would hear that cheery, “Good morning, Mr. Nunnikhoven” coming from a pew behind me. We are separated by 60+ years chronologically, but totally and immediately joined by our love for Jesus Christ.

    Now I find myself wondering about the 3,000+ murdered in their mother’s wombs today. How many Tiffanys and Tommys among them? Her heart defects would have been readily identifiable today, making her a prime candidate for murder in the womb. The world’s loss is great

  5. Mackenzie Godin says:

    Tiff was a great friend and loved everyone I went to school with her and even if I was having a bad day she still was able to get a smile on my face and help me feel better we all miss her and love her fly high Tiff

  6. Kathy Koester says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. Prayers are with you and your families. She will be missed.

    God bless