Along with quite a bit of speaking from the heart this is what I said…

Nine (our loving nickname for Caroline) was in a single word the matriarch of this family. She was the rock to which we clung. Most of us talked to her on a daily basis, often multiple times throughout the day. And her house was like ours, the place we all came home.

I will forever be grateful that I didn’t listen to anyone that told me I was crazy for packing up four kids under eight for an Insane Road Trip to the East Coast because it gave me the opportunity to have three glorious days with certainly my favorite aunt but more importantly one of my closest confidants and best friends.

Within 48 hours of our departure, Nine was gone.

But during our visit, I learned something new about Nine. If you have ever been to her home you know it is packed full of a lot of junk. She has so many trinkets and chotcke items around her house, I never asked her about the prism in her window. But on this visit, she told me that every time she sees a rainbow cast from the prism to the kitchen floor she feels as if her mother is with her…a quick visit, so to speak. A drop in to say hello through a colorful rainbow.

After the devastating news of her death had sunk in, after we had retold stories about her, discussed the countless generous things she had done for us, and I reflected on the conversations leading up to her death…I felt a strong need to find something that would make her live on.

I do not want this woman who was colorful and brass and eccentric and caring and flamboyant and spiritual and enormously kind and giving to just fade away from our lives. She was an incredibly storyteller so I urge everyone here to keep her stories alive.

Keep the moments you shared and the conversations that you had alive by retelling them over and over again. Think of all the off-the-wall things she used to do. The bold statements. The crazy outfits. The kindest gestures. The loud whistle. The strong voice.

I especially encourage you to tell these stories to her daughters. My best friend lost her mother at an early age. She took great offense that people never wanted to talk about her mother after her death.

Telling your stories may be painful at first. It certainly may be awkward but it will also be just what Nine would have done.

I have several prisms for individuals that I want you to place in a special window in your home. So that everyday when the light hits it ‘just so’ you will feel an overwhelming sense that Caroline is with you.

To you Wally…who had the single most extraordinary and traditional wife I know.

To Betsy and Suzy…a mother that all should be measured against.

To Grandpa…the daughter that was loyal beyond words.

To Lorraine…a daughter-in-law who seemed a part of your family from the beginning.

To Gordon, David, and Tom…your sister and your rock and most important your best friend.

To Nate and to me…a reminder that we had one heck of an aunt.

To Cathy, Cindy, Gloria, and Sue…a best friend that will forever remain in your heart.

Simply put, Nine is irreplaceable. Some have said it is now my duty to take on her role. If I could fill just the big toe of her shoe, it would be remarkable.

I will miss her but I will forever be grateful that she was a part of my life.

2 Responses to “eulogy”

  1. Jessica Strickland Says:

    I’m soo sorry for your loss, Tiffany!! She sounds like a truly incredible woman! Your words are beautiful about her…what a gift to be spoken soo highly of!

  2. Stoner Six » Blog Archive » a prism Says:

    […] built my Aunt Caroline’s eulogy around a prism.  Only two days before she died she explained to me that she always kept her […]

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