Funerals

Kevin Werner

Amatuer
Top Contributor
Messages
5,470
Reaction score
23,858
Points
688
Location
Sheboygan, WI
Commiserations are not expected, this is a question of where we are.
This is not morbid... I have 3 funerals this week. Uncle Bob, a lifelong teacher and wood craftsman last Saturday. 90 years old. Mostly kids, nephews and nieces. Where were his teacher friends ? Where wer his students? Buried my mom 6 years ago in a filled church with many of my dad's colleagues (law) in attendance. My dad's legal partner was laid to rest 6-8 months ago with a good attendance. His wife's service today was almost vacant. It hurt me greatly because his son, 15 years younger than I, crewed on my sailboat for many memorable races. Tomorrow my aunt, a Dominican nun will be laid to rest. Her contemporaries are scattered and the students she taught are from 8 or 10 states. I am guessing that 15 or 20 of my aunts 28 nephews and nieces from across the country will exchange greetings tomorrow at 10:30
 
Commiserations are not expected, this is a question of where we are.
This is not morbid... I have 3 funerals this week. Uncle Bob, a lifelong teacher and wood craftsman last Saturday. 90 years old. Mostly kids, nephews and nieces. Where were his teacher friends ? Where wer his students? Buried my mom 6 years ago in a filled church with many of my dad's colleagues (law) in attendance. My dad's legal partner was laid to rest 6-8 months ago with a good attendance. His wife's service today was almost vacant. It hurt me greatly because his son, 15 years younger than I, crewed on my sailboat for many memorable races. Tomorrow my aunt, a Dominican nun will be laid to rest. Her contemporaries are scattered and the students she taught are from 8 or 10 states. I am guessing that 15 or 20 of my aunts 28 nephews and nieces from across the country will exchange greetings tomorrow at 10:30
On the other hand, last year a 100 year old WWII (PB-Y radioman) friend of mine passed away and it was standing room only in a large church. He was very active in his church and the Fleet Reserve. I get where you're coming from though. When my mom passed at 88, it was about 35-40 people, mostly family.
 
Last edited:
Commiserations are not expected, this is a question of where we are.
This is not morbid... I have 3 funerals this week. Uncle Bob, a lifelong teacher and wood craftsman last Saturday. 90 years old. Mostly kids, nephews and nieces. Where were his teacher friends ? Where wer his students? Buried my mom 6 years ago in a filled church with many of my dad's colleagues (law) in attendance. My dad's legal partner was laid to rest 6-8 months ago with a good attendance. His wife's service today was almost vacant. It hurt me greatly because his son, 15 years younger than I, crewed on my sailboat for many memorable races. Tomorrow my aunt, a Dominican nun will be laid to rest. Her contemporaries are scattered and the students she taught are from 8 or 10 states. I am guessing that 15 or 20 of my aunts 28 nephews and nieces from across the country will exchange greetings tomorrow at 10:3
Your not alone.We’ll have a visit.
🤝
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Commiserations are not expected, this is a question of where we are.
This is not morbid... I have 3 funerals this week. Uncle Bob, a lifelong teacher and wood craftsman last Saturday. 90 years old. Mostly kids, nephews and nieces. Where were his teacher friends ? Where wer his students? Buried my mom 6 years ago in a filled church with many of my dad's colleagues (law) in attendance. My dad's legal partner was laid to rest 6-8 months ago with a good attendance. His wife's service today was almost vacant. It hurt me greatly because his son, 15 years younger than I, crewed on my sailboat for many memorable races. Tomorrow my aunt, a Dominican nun will be laid to rest. Her contemporaries are scattered and the students she taught are from 8 or 10 states. I am guessing that 15 or 20 of my aunts 28 nephews and nieces from across the country will exchange greetings tomorrow at 10:30
Where were they? A good question. My Mom's oldest brother was considered the family patriarch by all of us "kids". I talked to him regularly by phone and through the years we had family visits in person. When he was in his 80's, I asked him one time if he was still in touch with any of his old friends and he said in a matter-of-fact way "they're all dead". He lived to almost 95 years old, but he was never without the company of a bunch of nieces and nephews. Many of our friends knew him as Uncle Bud too.
 
If you want a crowded funeral you need lots of friends and die before they do. If you’re the last one standing, who’s coming? Especially if folks are scattered.
Commiserations, and all of that. Apologies if this is inappropriate or seems flippant, but I can't resist the opportunity to share this from Yogi Berra:

"You should always go to other people's funerals, otherwise, they won't come to yours.''
 
My parents picked a place to retire far from where they lived for 60 years. Now, approaching 90, most, if not all of their friends are dead. Since they bought in a retirement community, their neighbors are all dead as well. I have daughters. They mostly stay close to their birthplace. So, I moved. If I die here, my wife and the preacher will be at my funeral, unless they’re already dead.
 
My parents picked a place to retire far from where they lived for 60 years. Now, approaching 90, most, if not all of their friends are dead. Since they bought in a retirement community, their neighbors are all dead as well. I have daughters. They mostly stay close to their birthplace. So, I moved. If I die here, my wife and the preacher will be at my funeral, unless they’re already dead.

That's kind of what I was getting at but didn't want to go down that long deep rabbit hole.
I'm 69 now and approaching that final journey sooner than I would like and when my time comes except for my wife, some step-children and a few friends I'm not expecting much.

When my grandparents passed they and most of their family and friends spent their whole lives in a community, a radius of 20 miles.
With my parents generation families began to separate with work or opportunities that took them often hundreds of miles from where they were from. Then later they retired hundreds of miles from that second location. Sometimes they have time to develop new relationships and sometimes not.
My generation even went further in that trend of transience. I have no friends from my youth and very few from my early adulthood that remain in contact with. Life makes it too difficult.

When my late wife passed in 2008 she had a good turn out, family, friends and many that knew her professionally. When my parents passed not so much for many reasons, distance from family, smaller circle of friends etc.

I most recently attended the funeral for my old neighbor, older gentlemen that I used to ride with, tinker on bikes with and who really helped me get through the loss of my wife. I was fortunate that the family allowed me to speak and share anecdotes.
 
Funerals are good for us. That’s why we do it and have been doing it for thousands of years. I lost a younger brother in 2007. I took great comfort in that packed over capacity crowd at his funeral. Then, another at the place we were born. I believe it helped me cope. Most of us have suffered these tragedies along the way.
 
My uncle Bob passed away a few weeks ago and the funeral was 11 days ago on a monday. Many people have a hard time getting off work. Grand children, nephews/neices and friends of the kids. He was a week from 102. He was a Postmaster General, National Guard General retried and life long community actionist (someone who actually does stuff). My mom expected more people but that is how it goes. Same for my Dad who was very active in the local Republican party had just 3 show up from that group (albeit 8 years ago). More family is showing up this monday as we lay him to rest in Arlington Cemetery. 5 years ago when the wife of the company owner had her funeral, 15 of us went cause it was easy to get off work for her funeral. But the church had about 200 people.
 
Aunt's funeral today, 90 years old. She was a Dominican order nun for almost 75 years. Lots of nuns from the order were there including my 7th grade teacher from Catholic grade school. She was nice enough to mention only the good class room incidents.
 
90 years is a good run. I hope the years were good to her.
Thanks, yes, she had a good run, I am not shedding tears. She retired from teaching 25 or so years ago to take care of my aging grandmother. When Grandma passed she volunteered locally and served in the Church she grew up in. Then returned to her convent/sisters as her health/mobility declined. The years were very good to her and she made the most of them.
 
Thanks, yes, she had a good run, I am not shedding tears. She retired from teaching 25 or so years ago to take care of my aging grandmother. When Grandma passed she volunteered locally and served in the Church she grew up in. Then returned to her convent/sisters as her health/mobility declined. The years were very good to her and she made the most of them.
Although I cannot compare anything I've done to her service to humanity, I know how good it makes me feel when I help others. God bless her.
 
I attended a funeral service this summer for a friend of mine who was 25 years my senior. He worked at a gas station where I had my first part time job as a kid. His family and my family had been friends for many years through three generations. The funeral was well attended and after the service there was a reception at the back of the funeral home. I met up with his nephew, who is a friend of mine, but we only see each other at funerals. I had a nice chat with him and we caught up on what was happening in our lives. I commented to him that there weren’t many old people in attendance. He looked at me and smiled and said ”we are the old people now”. Never dawned on me until then.
When my mother passed 5-1/2 years ago, we held a memorial service for her in the early springtime. As luck would have it, there was a freak ice and snow storm and many could not attend her celebration of life Mom lived to 99.9 years of age so needless to say, there was only one of her friends in attendance.
 
I attended a funeral service this summer for a friend of mine who was 25 years my senior. He worked at a gas station where I had my first part time job as a kid. His family and my family had been friends for many years through three generations. The funeral was well attended and after the service there was a reception at the back of the funeral home. I met up with his nephew, who is a friend of mine, but we only see each other at funerals. I had a nice chat with him and we caught up on what was happening in our lives. I commented to him that there weren’t many old people in attendance. He looked at me and smiled and said ”we are the old people now”. Never dawned on me until then.
When my mother passed 5-1/2 years ago, we held a memorial service for her in the early springtime. As luck would have it, there was a freak ice and snow storm and many could not attend her celebration of life Mom lived to 99.9 years of age so needless to say, there was only one of her friends in attendance.
Yeah, I am reminded daily that "I" am the old guy in the room.
 
. . . He looked at me and smiled and said ”we are the old people now” . . .
There was a lovely old gentleman lived down the road, retired Church of Scotland Minister. He was about 94 and we were having a conversation about funerals, how older people tend to sit nearer the front. He said 'I sit in the front row these days and I suppose next time I'll be right at the front.'

He moved away to live nearer his daughter and died a couple years after that.
 
Back
Top