I visited Uncle J. yesterday for the last time at his funeral. He was 100 years old when he died on Tuesday. I met Uncle J. about 30 years ago when I started dating his nephew, my first husband Richard.
There were only a few visitors other than family at the funeral home. When a man lives to be 100 years old, there are not many left to pay their respects as Uncle J. outlived many of his friends and relatives. He also received visits at the funeral home from retired members of the Marine Corps who came to honor a fellow Marine.
I remember Uncle J. with fondness. As I sat with our family, I quietly remembered the many weekends and holidays when we visited with Richard’s mom and dad. Richard and I were happy to hear that Uncle J. would stop by for a visit after dinner. He usually brought a blueberry pie for us to have with coffee and ice cream. Uncle J. was a retired baker and he never visited without bringing a homemade pie. He, Dad and Richard enjoyed the baseball game or movies on TV and it was nice to see that Uncle J. enjoyed visiting his sister (my mother-in-law.) Uncle J. and Dad played on the bowling league in the retirement community where they lived. And well into his 80s, Uncle J. played on the community’s softball league.
He was always pleasant, friendly and had a sweet nature. I can’t think of anything negative that anyone could say about him and he never had a bad word about anyone else.
In recent years, after the deaths of Richard, Mom and Dad, I didn’t see Uncle J. but always thought of him when I remembered the weekend visits with Mom and Dad. Today, I saw him for the last time but he will live on in my memories