A week ago today, the world lost my mother's brother Grant. Born in 1924, he lived a long life. He experienced WWII and everything since. The onset of computers running our lives. Cars that are more comfortable than our homes. Telephones that don't need wires.
He survived the death of two wives, a son and his older brother. All that's left of that side of the family is his one daughter and my mom. And of course mom's seven "kids".
He's been cremated already and today we are all gathering in mid-Michigan at a tiny little cemetary in the country to lay his ashes to rest at the feet of my grandmother that I never knew. She died of cancer 12 years before I was even born. And next to my grandfather that was killed in a factory explosion the day before WWII ended. They never knew any of their grandchildren. And we've only ever known them by the marker at their heads and the stories that we've heard.
I have my memories of my uncle. Of all the times he would come and stay at our house when he and his wife didn't see eye to eye. And the times he would pinch and tickle my knee. He smoked a pipe his whole life (evidently a habit he picked up from his dad). Somehow, pipe smoke didn't bother me like cigarettes did. Infact, I rather liked the smell of Uncle Grant. And then there was the wisky dispenser that was a statue of a naked boy peeing that was always in his house. Funny, the stuff we remember. I am looking forward to hearing everyone elses memories today.
It's a two and a half hour drive and I've got three and a half hours to do it. So, I'm off to the great white north.