Tuesday, August 06, 2013

My Aunt Caryl's gift: my family contacts

From a letter I wrote to my Aunt Caryl Maloney, who died today.

Spring 2010

Dear Aunt Caryl,

Thank you for your letter! And your handwriting is fine, beautiful even. Mine isn't, so you must forgive this typed letter.

I was saddened to learn about the deaths in our family. I have such happy memories of all of them. I remember Diane so well. We were "best-friend-cousins" when we were young. Our parents would often "swap kids" for a couple of weeks each summer. I'd stay with Aunt Anesta and Uncle Freddy's family, and Diane's sister Donna would stay with my family. Diane—and I remember this like it was yesterday!—first told me about the "facts of life." I do hope Aunt Anesta is at least comfortable. And how inspiring it is to me that Aunt Adele rallied from a stroke to take care of Uncle Ira. I've prayed for them all, of course, and look forward to continuing to do so.

It's always such a joy to hear about your activities. I can just picture you with the girls you went to school with. I hope you manage to stay out of trouble! (Just kidding!)

You must be awfully proud of your kids and grandchildren. I love hearing about them. Do give them my love.

Yes, Kenny has been my best friend since my Bill died in 1986, and we've been business partners since then. A year ago last Easter I shattered my foot and Ken took care of me since I couldn't do much. He cooked my meals, drove me to physical therapy—you name it and he was always there for me. It finally occurred to me that I was in love with him! And so, after gathering up my courage, I proposed to him and we were married last Easter Sunday. I'm very happy. Our business has it's ups and downs, but we're managing. The wedding was relatively small, but do you know what made it special? My late husband's family—we've remained close all these years—came from all over the country to the wedding! It was wonderful!

I'd love to see your pictures. Better yet, why not ask Jimmy or Patty or Peggy—or one of your grandkids—to scan them and email them to me! I'd love to hear from them. Tell them (or just show this letter to them) that my email address is KClark@mindspring.com—they'll know what to do. And if any of them are on Facebook, they can "friend" me: my Facebook name is "Kelly Thatcher." If this makes no sense to you, I understand…feel free to show this letter to any or all of them. It would be really wonderful for us to keep in touch and Facebook makes it easy.

Thank you so much for your good wishes, Aunt Caryl. Buzzy and Sharon are fine. Sharon is semi-retired from her law practice, and Buzzy's boys both have good jobs. No, neither one is married yet…we keep hoping!

God bless you, Aunt Caryl, for keeping me in the "family loop." You were always so good about that. I remember my mother being so grateful to you for including her in all the news, particularly after my dad died.

You take good care of yourself, okay? And do give my love to the kids and grandkids!

Much love and prayers,