Thursday, June 05, 2008

Fondly Remembered

It was always a treat when I was a child to visit Uncle Duane, Aunt Doris, and Roger. Uncle Duane seemed to always be in a good mood. He loved working with his cows, and other outdoor chores. It was there that I first saw a milking machine in action. I was so amazed, giving the fact
that one of our twice daily chores was to milk our two cows the old fashioned way, by hand.

Long after I moved away from central Illinois, it was always a treat on our visits home to see Uncle Duane. Not only was he eager to catch up with what we were doing, he was happy to bring us up to date about his latest project or adventure. The last time I saw Uncle Duane was at the 80th birthday celebration held for my Mother back in January, just a month after the death of his second wife, Joyce, for whom he had tenderly cared. And he was so proud of Roger, Jill, and the grandchildren Hillary and Allison, to whom, as well as to Uncle Duane’s surviving siblings: Don Bragg, Jane Ledbetter and Ruth Stone, our sincere condolences and prayers are offered.

While we were in Sullivan in January we received word of the declining health of Mom’s sister, Lois Whitely. Aunt Lois passed away just a few weeks later, on March 6, 2008. It had been a few years since the last time I had seen Aunt Lois. I had returned to Sullivan to conduct a funeral. On the way into town I stopped off the grocery store to pick up the most recent copy of the local paper. After purchasing the paper, on my way out of the store I hesitated after passing another check-out station. The woman purchasing her grocery looked so much like my Mother, and I was sure it was Aunt Lois. I waited for her to complete checking out to visit with her, and we had a very pleasant visit. After returning home I received the most beautiful card with the nicest handwritten note from her. She, too, continues to live in our memories of the days when the family would congregate at Grandpa Ethington’s Allenville farm, or at our home for Thanksgiving and other special occasions. Now, only three sisters from the Luther and Mercedes Ethington family survive: Irene Parker, Mary Bragg, and Eva Ethington. Although it has been three months, we want to again express our sympathy and prayers to Aunt Lois’ children, Neal Whitely and Donna Bornhoff, and their families as well as to the sisters who deeply miss her.