• Various/Onna Carr

Hidden Candies, Corsages, and Life at the Height of a Steering Wheel:  Remembering Grandaddy Part 4

Post by Onna Carr

Grandaddy left when I was five. He was fine and then, suddenly, his organs shut down, it

was discovered he had cancer, and he was quickly gone. Grandaddy had lung issues and breathing

problems for many years after he inhaled too much dust in a farming accident, but he had improved

and all thought he was going to live for a long time, but he quietly got into the fiery chariot and

rode that truck into the sunset just a year after he and Gramsey’s golden anniversary. I am not sure

what heaven is like, but I think it must have a few dusty roads and fields of wheat for him to be

comfortable up there.

Grandaddy slipped out of my life in the midst of he hush of relatives speaking in clusters in

the family home and at the church, swathed in dark clothes and tones, dripping with tears of sadness.

That was my first encounter with death and the loss of someone I loved. It was then I realized what

death meant: Silence and Empty Space that others never can nor should fill.

I wore a black velvet dress, with triangular lace and white hose to that funeral, and I still have

that dress, tucked up in storage in a yellow and white Sunrise Doughnut box. All extended family that

could attend came to the funeral, and it is really the last time I can remember seeing everyone

together--celebrating a quiet and peaceful man who they all loved and who loved them all: eulogies

were said, aunts were hugged, cousins played outside, and all sat down for a meal together

afterwards to close out this moment in time with the grace note of a simple dinner and the

conversation it brought. I am not sure why I have saved the dress I wore through the years. My

mother tucked it away for "later" and then gave it to me when I was in high school. "Later" has

not yet come, so I keep it there on the shelf, and I remember the life of quietness and kindness of my

great-grandfather that we celebrated at his funeral.

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