by Pa Rock
Member of the Older Generation
My father was laid to rest this morning. The service was wonderful. The minister had never met Dad, but the ceremony was personalized by four of his grandchildren rising and addressing the mourners. While public speaking is not everyone's forte, particularly under such emotional circumstances, the four grandchildren who chose to speak certainly painted a very human and loving picture of their grandfather. Thank you Heidi, Tim, Justin, and Tiffany!
The burial was at the Noel Cemetery with full military honors. It was beautiful and very moving. The funeral detail was made up of active duty soldiers in dress blues. The funeral director told me that usually veterans' groups do the funerals, and that it was quite an honor that actual military members did this ceremony. The young men in the funeral detail performed a very polished and respectful ritual. The family was immensely appreciative of their efforts.
I saw many old friends at the funeral and at the reception at the reception following the service. Jack and Billie Allman, two of the best people in the world were there. Billie was the school secretary the entire time that I was principal at the Noel School. Mertie and Anna Harmon and Joyce Short - all good friends - came and paid their respects. The ladies from the church who put the reception together were all friends from our past including Rose Peck, Lou Fisher, Ruby Flynn, Patti Carroll, Opal Hatfield, - and I should have not mentioned any of them because I surely have forgotten some! Family members included all of our kids, our cousins Angie Lankford, Bill Dobbs and Wayne Macy (and Wayne's mother, Betty), my Dad's sister, Betty Lankford, and my mother's brother, Floyd Sreaves. Betty and Floyd are each the last surviving members of their parents' families. Several of Dad's Hispanic friends were in attendance.
Gail's kids have all left and all of mine are staying with me tonight at the big house. They have spent the evening eating pizza and playing Jenga. The game has been challenging because Sebastian likes to throw the Jenga blocks!
It has been a very long and interesting day. I feel that Gail and I have both been too busy this week to absorb our the depth of our loss, but I know that as family begins to go back home, the enormity of what has happened will begin to settle in on us.
Friday I am heading back to Arizona.