Last night, my dad informed me that my Great Aunt, Joy, had passed away.
Needless to say, I was genuinely touched at the news.
Aunt Joy was the last of my grandparent's generation. She was much younger than all of my grandparents who had all passed away decades ago. Aunt Joy was the family historian, the old, ancient relic aunt who hung on, the one who relayed all the family history when we'd gather at funerals back in the 1990s. . .
But still, my Aunt Joy was the last of my grand-parents /-slash-/ great aunts or uncles to hang around.
My paternal great-grandparents passed away in 1961, 1962, 1967, and 1977, respectively, (I remember the last three.) The last of my direct paternal offspring was my paternal grandfather who died in 1963
He was hospitalized in Austin Texas, and I remember, as a child, being driven up to Austin and being shown the capitol building -- so I always think of the Texas State capitol building as the building "where Poppy died."
I hardly remember my paternal grandfather, but I'll always remember that trip up to Austin when I was four years old: My dad pointed out the destinations from Kenedy Texas: Up to . . .Nixon! (where Granny and Big-Mama lives!) , then to-- oh my gosh, Luling; then to Lockhart, then -- finally -- to Austin! Where Poppy is in the hospital . . . in that big building with the dome on top. For some reason, I remember that trip when I was four years old, (Nixon, Luling, Lockhart, Austin!)
Poppy died in 1963. His sister, my Aunt Joy, died last week in 2011. Poppy was only sixty. Aunt Joy was, like, a hundred and two-hundred years old. (She was actually was ninety-something)
Each of these siblings died 48 years apart from each other and they were both a memorable part of my family.
Just for fun, here is a photo of me and my cousin with my great-grandfather, Big Dad.
I actually remember sitting it that reddish leather chair and picking at the cigar holes in the arm of the leather.
(I'm the little guy with the big head.)
But what really astounds me, is that I can remember both of their funerals, 48 years apart.
Rest in peace, Poppy and Aunt Joy.
I've loved your offspring so very much. . .