The Eulogy of May Lily - Eulogy for a mother - Eulogy by a son
On behalf of my brother, Dave, my sisters, Margaret, and Connie, and the entire Lilygren family, I thank you all for coming today as we say a final farewell to one of the most wonderfully gracious and loving women we’ve ever known.
We had one other sister, Cheri, up until three weeks ago. We lost her and mom in such close proximity that we are all pretty much emotionally drained. Your presence and support means a great deal to us. Thank you for being here.
Mom was 92. If you do the math, you realize that she was born during the Great Depression. She was just a child during the worse part of it, but that was a time in history where, if you were part of it at any age, you were deeply affected by it for the rest of your life. Mom and people of her generation came away with a sense of never wanting to waste anything. They developed a super-strong work ethic. They cherished family connections and, somehow, became some of the most positive and hopeful people on the planet. And most seemed to come away with a deep faith in God.
Doesn’t that describe my mother?
Mom was out there nearly every summer of her life, working in the garden, raising vegetables, especially when we were kids. She’d always be out there pulling the weeds and caring for her crops. She’d can and freeze vegetables and fruit. She’d make sure we always had plenty to eat. In fact, that was probably one of the things she was most proud of – being able to feed five kids and a husband with little to work with and satisfy and fill us all.
But, of course, what she was really proudest of was us. Over the years she worked for a while at the local Elementary School cafeteria and she wrote a social column for the weekly ‘Capay News’ where we lived, but for the most part her ‘job’ was to be our mom. She attended hundreds of ballgames we were in. She attended concerts and plays and school events where she always beamed with pride as she saw us taking part… She was a Cub Scout den mother. She taught Sunday School… all for us. And that interest in the kids and their activities continued into the next generation when grandkids Michael, Donald, Richard, Brandi, Justin, Carri, Jenny, Ben, Becky, Jacquelyn, Britany, and Bradley were growing up (that’s 12 if you didn’t count). Most of you have fond memories of your grandmother cooking – maybe pancakes or making family dinners – the smells and the hustle and bustle in her kitchen… She LOVED watching her grandkids grow up into the wonderful adults they’ve become… She attended as many of their activities as she could until she was well into her 80s.
I won’t name all of her 23 great grandchildren or her one great great granddaughter [grandson?]. But I do have a word to you great grandkids: You know, most of your friends have never known their grandparents – age, time, distance have prevented it. You have known a GREAT grandmother who truly was ‘great.’ I hope you will always remember how special that is and that you will take some of the great qualities you saw in her – her gentleness, her generosity of spirit, her kindness and love – and allow those things to take root and flourish in your own lives. In so doing, she lives on and your lives will be blessed.
Mom loved family dinners and times together. With such a large family sometimes it got noisy and crowded, but her philosophy was ‘the more the merrier’ and she would orchestrate those family gatherings as often as she possibly could.
Mom was always such a positive person. She almost always had a smile on her face. I’m pretty sure that happy and peaceful perspective on life came from her faith and her commitment to the Christian Science Church. Her faith was deep. In fact, she volunteered at the church reading room in ______ for decades, making the twenty mile trek several times a week until just a few years ago. She loved going and talking with people and helping the church in any way she could.
Mom was a woman who was always willing to help. If she saw a need, she never hesitated to jump in and try to meet it if she could. And she was so patient with everyone and with every thing. She loved to cook. She loved adventure. She loved to laugh. She had a heart of gold. Mom was a quiet woman but she was a woman who drew people to her because of her gentle spirit and her obvious love for others.
About four years ago mom left her home and moved into the Olive Glen Foundation. It is owned and operated by the Christian Science Church but it is managed by her daughter, my sister, Margaret. It wasn’t home but she found friends there and the staff, all Christian Science nurses and caregivers, all loved her and she them. She SO appreciated all they did to make her final years happy and peaceful… Margaret, you were a large part of that – Thank you.
Mom was a woman who touched a lot of lives. She implanted so many memories and her love was constantly present. Mom – thank you for those memories. Thank you for all you were and all you did and the example you set. Thank you for being the most awesome mother and grandmother anyone could ever hope for. We will always remember you and hold you, in love, in our hearts forever.
Eulogy for a mother. Eulogy for a mom. Eulogy for a ma... Eulogy by a son.
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