Today we received the news that my Dad’s oldest sister has passed from this earth, our island home, to be with our heavenly Father. This is really sad and upsetting to me as Aunt Dora was, for all practical purposes, the epitome of the family matriarch. When we were growing up we would spend quite a few summer days at her home in Michigan. It was a great time as we simply had to wander across the street and out on a dock to a wonderful lake that they lived on called Clark lake. Her home was always warm and inviting – exemplifying the woman herself.
In the mid 70′s Aunt Dora and Uncle Howard moved down to Florida. Uncle Howard has battled MS all of his life – and is still fighting it. The most emotional part about this whole situation for me is how much I know he’ll miss his “Dori” when he finds out the news. Since he is in hospice care at this point, I’m not sure that he has been told yet.
Anyway, we’ve had the opportunity to visit them a few times in Florida and when they came up to Ohio for the family reunions. They both always had a wonderful smile and would take the time to listen to us kids no matter what topic we wanted to discuss.
We learn so much from those that come before us….Aunt Dora spent quite a bit of time researching family history. Through her love of geneology, I learned that my ancestry included a hangman in Pennsylvania, a riding circuit minister and both a Revolutionary War and Civil War Veteran. I was privileged a couple of years ago to have come across the records of George Gaby, the RW veteran and found that he served two 9 month tours with a Mass regiment.
So now we are without our beloved Aunt Dora. It just won’t be the same. All we can do, of course, is continue the work of the living. I hope that I can help pass along the lessons of our family history and the compiled information that Dora worked so hard to pull together to my daughters. More importantly, I hope that my daughters grow up with the love of people and gentle nature that Dora exemplified.
May our merciful God provide comfort to Howard, her spouse and companion for over 50 years as he learns the news.
As for me, I hope to pull out the family history that Dora put together and spend a little while with her spirit in those pages.
Rest well Dora!!!!
Love, your nephew Chris