Many of you know that Steve's dad had Alzheimer's. He died last week. It was not entirely unexpected. He didn't suffer at the end which was a real blessing.
Steve's dad was an engineer. He was a bombadier in WW2 who narrowly escaped dropping any bombs. He had a sharp mind and ran his own construction business for many years. He was married to Steve's mom, Edith, for more than 60 years. His family loved him.
The funeral was very nice. Odd to say, but true. When someone has Alzheimer's, they lose who they are long before their body catches up. As I visited with old friends and family members, listened to the eulogies, and looked at the wonderful photos in the slide show, I was reminded of the man I knew 'then'. We all were. Speaking for myself, I'm happy that the 'old' Craig is firmly back in my mind.
Craig and Edith lived for many years on a 5-acre lot. They had an enormous garden. Here's Craig with Elanor about 7 years ago.
Craig grew up in Stigler, OK. Edith grew up nearby in Hoyt. These are two small towns. Very small. Back in the day there wasn't a big lake nearby, and no interstate. There must have been a reason that the towns came into existence but I don't know what it was. That said, it is still a real pretty part of Oklahoma. Here is Hoyt's main street, yesterday…
Craig and Edith didn't meet until he got out of the service and they got married not long thereafter. They moved around a bit before settling in OKC where they lived together for more than 50 years. But they both made plans to be buried in the Hoyt Cemetery. It was a 2+ hour drive from OKC to Hoyt but many made the trip.
It's been many years since we were here for Edith's mother's funeral. I don't think it has changed since then. There are some very old headstones and there are newer ones. The views are lovely. It's quiet and peaceful. If it wasn't so very far from us I would happily be buried here.
Death is the one of two things that happens to us all. So many people avoid thinking about dying and I think that's too bad. Edith and Craig planned – and paid for – their funerals 20 years ago. As Steve's sister, Jane, said – it did make it easier because they decided what they wanted and made it happen. Edith seemed very much at peace, yesterday, with the funeral and the burial. I think if Craig had been there, he'd have considered it well done.
We'll all remember him with a smile.
PS – in case you read this quickly and think that Edith is already in heaven… she's not. She is still happily with us. And we are glad that she is.