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The End of a Joyful Life

28 Jul

An obituary I came across the other day:

Jean Kennedy Jean was born on August 21, 1931 in Blackpool, England. She passed away in Olympia Washington on July 2, 2020. She was a loving mother, grandmother, great grandmother, sister and friend. She was born to parents William Henry Jessop and wife Margaret of Blackpool England. Jean’s two sisters were: Barbara Alton of Vancouver B.C., husband Derek, daughter Diane and son David; Margaret Moore of Blackpool England, husband David, son Graham and wife Linda, son Lawrence. Her Children were: Daughter Barbara Haskell, husband Michael Haskell; granddaughter Kelle, husband James, two great granddaughters; grandson Brian; grandson Randy, wife Christina and 4 great grandchildren. Son Michael Kennedy, wife Evelyne; grandson Robert, wife Nicole and great grandson; granddaughter Jamie, husband Anthony, great granddaughter and new baby on the way. As a young woman she moved to the united State to be married to Warren Kennedy of Colville Washington, the two met while Warren (Pete) was stationed in the UK and Europe while in the US Air force. After a career as a mother and home maker she worked for the retail clerks union in the grocery / bakery business in Yakima Washington. She retired from work in Yakima and a few years later moved to the Olympia Washington area to be closer to family and friends. She loved home decorating, entertaining and various social functions. She enjoyed playing cards, bowling, bingo, doing puzzles and walking along the water front of Olympia as it reminded her of her early years living along the Irish Sea in Back pool England. Blackpool is a beautiful costal town along the western coast with a famous scenic promenade walkway that goes past the Blackpool Tower. She always did a daily prayer for all of her family and friends that were always on her mind and in her heart. Her smile! Though her smile has gone forever and her hand I cannot touch, I still have so many memories of the one I loved so much. Her memory is my keepsake with which I’ll never part, God has her in his keeping and I have her in my heart.

 

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I didn’t know this woman.  In fact, oddly, I didn’t even realize people still wrote out obituaries for their loved ones. I just thought this was something that went the way of the dinosaurs.

An entire life summarized in what, three-hundred words?  Eighty-nine years of living, succinctly shared with the reading public, all that is left of this unremarkable, remarkable woman.

Dust to dust!

I’m sure, if it were possible to sit down with Jean right now, she would tell us all that those eighty-nine years went by in the blink of an eye.  She would express wonder in how it all happened so quickly. I’m sure she would have a few regrets.  I’m sure she would beam if asked about her loved ones.

One life among seven-point-eight billion lives.

Death is the ultimate lesson in humility, don’t you think?

Seven-point-eight billion, but here’s the remarkable thing:  Jean was unique, a one-of-a-kind treasure among all of them, just as I am, just as you are.  There is no one else like me, like her, like you, the most precious treasure in the world, and that makes us all priceless gems.

Just random thoughts by this introverted writer on a day when reflections flow like sweet honey.

Have a great day, unless you’ve made other plans.

Bill

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”