My sister Dawn’s celebration of life was held yesterday in Sunol, CA. population about 300.
Dawnie’s youngest daughter, Debbie served as caretaker through those tough months before her death. She knew that Dawnie’s joy in life came mainly from her family, particularly, her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Her only son, Tom, pointed out the main events in her life, how she met their father, the birth of four children, facing death and divorce, working, working, working. while I mentally toted up her most obvious character traits. She was a hard worker, uncomplaining, and could be quite stoic. Never self-aggrandizing, nor prone to taking credit for her accomplishments. She was like a mother to her younger siblings. She helped me through teenaged angst, convincing me of my worth, and beauty when I knew I was an ugly duckling. When her children were growing up, she proceeded to mother and shelter all who came with-in need. Her children have those same traits.
At a recent funeral I attended, I looked about and saw so much life in the room, and the same was true here. But, since she was my sister, I couldn’t dispel feelings of sadness for those missing faces and the heartache of loss, as well. Her daughter’s Kim, and Penny, pre-deceased her, the most heartbreaking thing a parent can face. Kim’s son Ryan, his wife Cody and their children. Ryan claimed as a grandson Dawnie always told him he was perfect.
The girls in Dawnie’s family from right to left. Kelly, Penny’s daughter. Kaitlyn, Kim’s daughter. Julie, Debbie’s daughter. Casey, Kim’s foster daughter.
Dawnie’s niece, Christine Juliot and her son Seth, with his wife and kids.
Dawnie’s other niece, Vickie Julliot.
The Juliots are from the Dawn’s husband’s side of the family.
Debbie made sure there would be things for kids of all ages to do. The message here is clearly Grandchildren are our most important assets.
CJ and grandpa.
Margaret and Abby.
Dawnie was an inveterate card player, scrabble and boggle champ and in her later years, a collector of eclectic jewelry. Plenty of all decorated the room. Everyone was invited to take a pin and earrings to wear for the event, which we did.
I am wearing one a Hershey’s kiss on my sweater and some gaudy gold balls on my ears from her collection.
I tried to make sure I got a picture of everyone but I sprained three fingers in a fall yesterday and the fingers didn’t swell up until i drove home. So it has been slow going this morning and I’m just going to post pictures. and a link to the complete album at the end.