Tuesday, May 3, 2005

The last of her generation....



My Aunt Gladys Wade died last Wednesday night. I got a call Thursday from her daughter-in-law letting me know that the funeral was planned for Saturday. So my husband and I, along with our 3 children, packed up and went on a driving adventure.

We drove 3-1/2 hrs to a small town here in Georgia where I grew up (read that as "where I stayed the longest when I was a child"...I moved around a lot!) I'm fond of the memories I have of Camilla, Georgia. It's changed in 25 years, of course. But the schools are still there. My old house is still there, though I don't like the way it looks now. I wish I'd taken a picture of it while I was there. It is so boring and actually looks like a fort of some sort as it is so boxy now (rooms added on and a large fence surrounds the backyard) and the beautiful azaleas and camellias bushes have been removed from the yard for a long while now. It was beautiful when we lived in it. Now it looks like a place for someone to hide away in, uninviting, and not to be seen by the outside world.

My old Middle School was still there, but I was sad to hear that it is now used for Administrative Offices. It's a perfectly nice school still! When I was in 7th Grade there, a new High School was being built, and now the Middle School is out there beside the High School. As my old school friend, Laura said, she doesn't know why they don't just put the Primary School out there too!

Times change.

Laura. I met her in 4th Grade there in Camilla. I'll never forget meeting her. Even today we still stay in touch. Almost 30 years later. It was great to see her again while we were there. She's now a teacher in the Middle School!

But back to Aunt Gladys. Aunt Gladys was my "Great-grandaunt". She was my grandmother's aunt, my great-grandmother's sister. I only learned of Aunt Gladys after my grandmother died in 1994. Her address was in my grandmother's address book and after some questioning, I discovered that this was another side of my family I didn't know. I wrote to Aunt Gladys often over the past 10 years, visiting her two or three times before I had children. As my girls were born, I'd send her their birth announcement. Her son Donald was just telling me this past weekend that he was looking over them. She obviously kept them.

She was a very sweet, generous, kind woman. She lived to be 92. I'm thankful for the brief moment of her life I was able to know her. And now I know even more of that side of my family through her death as many came to pay their respects. She was the last remaining child of her parents. Life goes on to those of us who remain, until we're where she once stood and is now standing no more.

1 comment:

Secret Pal said...

My condolences. What a lovely tribute to memories of your tender years, and a dear family member.

You're a good writer! I've added you to my blogroll. To be sure I'll be reading it often!

Secret Pal