Friday, September 2, 2011

Honoring our Dead

Today I honor my own personal dead. This is a list of my own. These are the people whose funerals I attended, or bodies I viewed, or graves I visited before I was 8 years old:
Margaret Sue Brown, stillborn. My sister.
Helen Rosalie Brown, stillborn. My sister.
John Patrick McCorkle, lived 1 day. My brother.
Helen "Nettie" McCorkle Bailey. My great-aunt.
Howard Allen McCorkle, lived 1 day. My brother.
Emma Bailey McCorkle, my grandmother.
Albert Charles McCorkle, my father.
Thank you. Please send your own lists. These babies listed above have never appeared on a list before. Howard Allen I remember so clearly. My dad and I were the only ones viewing him when we sat with him in his tiny white casket. He was pale with blue lips. We buried him while Mom was still in the hospital. I was 4 years old. The other babies were all born before me, I was the first child to thrive. I've visited their graves many times throughout my life, and imagined those older sisters so often. My younger sister and I were 2 of 6, only 2 lived. Imagine. I was also 4 when My Aunt Net died. It was shocking to me to see her in her casket, to attend the funeral and see all the grownups crying. And I was 5 when my beloved Grandma Emma died. She was beautiful and tiny, soft and sweet. She had so many grandchildren, and yet I felt special. I've written before about the loss of my dad when I was 7. Tell me about your losses.

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