What is going on? Lately it seems that there is a new death thread or two every day in MPSIMS, the news is chock full of celebrity deaths, and I have spent every weekend this month at the funeral home. This coming weekend will be no exception.
For the third week in succession a friend of the family has died. It’s been happening almost like clockwork - February 1, February 9, February 15.
They were all older people, each having reached at least 70 years on this earth. Each filled a niche in our community. Each will be missed.
We now need a new “picture lady”. You probably know someone like that. She’s the one who always has a camera at every get together. Having a pot luck at church? She’s there, taking pictures. The next day the pictures are developed, placed in an album, and sitting in the church foyer. It’s an important job, part historian and part community glue. It’ll be a difficult hole to fill.
We need a new “candy man”. He’s the one who always has peppermints for the kids and hugs for the adults. Always smiling, he never met a stranger. He has a kind word and a bit of humor for everyone. This job can’t be faked, no, the kids would see right through that even when the adults couldn’t. He was buried with his hands folded across his stomach, a peppermint tucked between his thumb and forefinger. St. Peter’s gonna like him.
We need a new “baby lady”. She’s everybody’s grandmother. She’s been keeping the nursery and babysitting as long as anyone can remember. If you’ve been around here long enough she’s changed your diaper, too. She has that special quality that enables her to communicate with infants. They know immediately that she offers security, comfort and love. They know because it shows in her eyes. Oh, she talks to them, but it’s not what she says so much as how she says it. There’s no school for this, folks.
Why now? Why so close? I don’t know. Logic doesn’t work here, no matter how hard we try. All I know is that these were special people, each in their own way. Each passing represents a tear in the fabric. A tear that needs mending lest the fabric begin to unravel.