Today, I want to share the words my cousin Norman penned about his mother, my Aunt Ruth, who died last Sunday night. I thought it was one of the most beautiful tributes I’d ever read, and the words are so true of her. My sister Lora commented that they reminded her of Proverbs 31, where it says, “Her children will rise up and call her blessed.” In this day where women desire and achieve so many things, I sometimes wonder if we do so at the expense of things more precious.
I did not ask Norman’s permission to send out his heartfelt words to the never-ending bytes of the web, but why would I? We’re cousins (and his sister--one of my best childhood buds--said it'd be fine).
Our mother leaves this earth to join her husband Norman in Heaven and be with our Lord. She leaves behind six children, 18 grandchildren, 33 great grandchildren, and 2 great great grandchildren. The legacy she leaves this family is of the most precious kind, a set of values revolving around God and family. Both our mother and father never put anything above the needs of the family. Sacrifice for us was an everyday occurrence. Our mother was our teacher from our earliest memories. We all learned to pray at an early age with our mother by our side, kneeling at the bedside teaching us the prayer which starts “Now I lay me down to sleep…”. She was by our side every day we went to school helping with homework and proud of whatever our accomplishments might be. When we were in need of correction, which was often, her punishment was usually, “I am going to tell you dad when he gets home”. It was usually just a threat and it generally worked. The most valued lesson our parents taught us was the demonstration of unconditional love for their children, and that unconditional love didn’t stop at the children. It was demonstrated to the grandchildren and great grandchildren as well. Mother ended each day by praying for those around her in need, saying the Lord’s Prayer and reciting the 23rd PSALMS. Our parents home has been the center of our universe for nearly 65 years and as mother leaves us to join our father in heaven, the memories we have as her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren have left an indelible impression on our hearts that will never be forgotten. We love her, miss her and are blessed she left us each other.