8.14.2006

Aunt Dot...

A private woman throughout her life, I was unable to blog much about her here these past months as she battled the illness that finally took her life late last week. I made my comments cryptic because I knew that she wasn't telling many people about her cancer, the fact that she had it or that it was untreatable.

She may have been private, but it didn't stop people from getting to know her. And I mean many people. Her visitation last night was attended by the hundreds, I'd guess. It was scheduled for three hours and during that three hours her family stood to greet the many who came and embrace every one of them. Those who came to say their goodbyes and support Dorothy's family stood in line for hours. I haven't been to a visitation so heavily attended in many years. It was a testimony to the kind of person Aunt Dot was.

Loving. Generous. Kind-hearted. Beautiful. And members of her family got up to speak about that love and generosity during her funeral today. Daughter Jody joined a fabulous little gospel group in song. Granddaughter Amy, who was the fellow cancer battler in the family delivered her eulogy with strength and grace. Grandson Jason and Granddaughter Mindi read scripture. And there was a woman who sang Ave Maria that had us all in tears with it's lovely tones.

I wish I had a few of the photographs to post for you because my Aunt was a lovely woman. I'll beg my cousins for some photo copies. If I get them I'll add them here because she and my Uncle make such a stunning pair that I want to share.

I remember how welcoming she always was to everyone. I heard that again and again today, as well. We asked she and my uncle to help out at the reception many years ago at my first wedding. Keli and I were watching video of that occasion the other night when I had unpacked a box and come across a copy of it. The general noise in the basement of the VFW Hall was too much to be able to hear any conversations at the individual tables or at the wedding party table specifically, but there were Uncle Howard and Aunt Dot, bustling around looking perfect and doing everything they could to make us comfortable and make certain we had everything we needed. They were manning the champagne bottles and ice water and dashing about making certain our plates were filled. Checking in with the bride and groom every few minutes to see if we needed anything. It is precious video and I will cherish it forever. They even loaned us their cabin on the lake for our honeymoon. *sigh* Completely giving and generous. I was always "Sweetie" and "Honey" to Aunt Dot. And she will always be in my heart.

Rest in peace lovely Auntie. :(

In my head: Ave Maria

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