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Anniversary Tribute Post to Gram

It has been a little over a year since Gladys Durham was called to Heaven so this post is in tribute to her.  She will always be an inspiration in my life.  Below is the eulogy that I wrote and gave for her.

Good morning everyone.

If you begin to read a persons standard obituary in a newspaper you would read about when they were born, the day that they passed away, and what loved ones they left behind.  What you will not read about is how that person touched the lives of the people around them, was a role model for her family, what they will be remembered for, and how they will be missed.  So I would like to take this opportunity to dedicate a few words to celebrate Gladys Durham’s journey to heaven.

Gladys, Mrs. Durham, Mom, or “Gram”  – as she was lovely called by us grandchildren, showed all of us in many ways how great of a person that she was.   All of us have our own stories and memories that would show this.  Some of you may be able to remember and share a few.  Perhaps her wedding day, or stories of how she worked at a Tank Plant while her husband was fighting for our country in the Pacific. 

The memories that I recall of Gram are of a woman that had a distinct presence in a room.  This presence was displayed by the respect that she showed towards everyone, and also how she always tried to make you feel welcomed.   If you were family, a friend, or someone she had met for the first time you were treated well.  

She would welcome anyone into her home and always invite you back to come see her again.   Gram even wanted to, and insisted on, having family gatherings at her home even when she was in poor health.  On these occasions she still tried and worked as hard as she could to make you feel welcome, and make sure that the food was prepared.   One of us would have told her to sit down, relax, we will take care of it!  But as soon as you would come back into the room you would catch her back working hard again.  Always persistent to make sure that everything was just right for her guests.

Gram would always invite people over, “come use the pool”, she use to say, “bring your friends.”   I still am not sure if she really knew what she was getting herself into with those invites.  But even though there were times when a family member would come over, bring a few friends, then the kids form her neighborhood would join in the fun.  Her backyard and swimming pool quickly became a three ring circus. Kids playing Macro Polo in the pool, a few having a contest to see who could make the biggest splash, and even a few paying soccer in the yard.   But Gram would simply sit back and watch the entertainment.  To some people that would have been a nuisance.  But not to her. She would be patient, be a honoree judge on who made the biggest splash, and even volunteer to make snacks for all of the children.    Now having over ten kids in your backyard swimming and playing is one thing, but making snacks for all of us, now that is a great display or patience and character.   Once again she was simply displaying her quality of making everyone feel welcomed in her home.

Gram was also a very positive role model in the importance of a positive attitude.   When her health would fade or she would be going though rough times she was always happy to visit of talk with you.   She would say that we should not worry about her, and that she would be fine.   She would insist to talk about other things so that your emotions would not be brought down by what she was going through.  Once again she was caring about others.

Gram was also a great listener, and had a strange way of making problems not seem as bad as they really were.  She would offer advice, sometimes simply stay quiet and keep her opinions to herself, you could tell by the expressions on her face that she wanted to say something, but the burden that you were sharing would always seem a little easier after you were done talking to her.

Gram would always ask you to call her.  “Give me a call sometime.” She would say.  She loved talking and hearing a loved ones voice over the phone.   Even when you would call and catch her on a day that she forgot to, or did not want to put hearing aids in, she would simply listen, may not hear much of what you said, but it still warmed her heart.

We will all miss you, remember all that you taught us, and how you touched our lives.  It was truly a blessing to have you in our lives.  Please enjoy your new journey in heaven, do not worry about us too much, and we all look forward to seeing you when it is our time to join you.


July 24, 2006 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. thanks for sharing about your grandma!

    Comment by Unknown | July 25, 2006 | Reply

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