in loving memoriam.

“...Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”

In the backing away from her as she drew her last few breaths there on the hospital bed and in the whispering of those words, her favorite Psalm, in her ear, I realized just how formative she’d been in my life all these years.  Roots tended to.

Those words, surely, a memoriam of her life lived well; a nurtured hope alive and well in my days stretching on.  Forever echoing back to me.  A path walked well laid as a map, a reference to end. My grandmother affectionately always known as, Maw Maw Lucy, lived the 92 years given to her, the good with the bad, the forsaken and hoped to be forgotten days as holy in her simple continuance, her steady countenance, rooted in a faith disciplined in prayers and humble trust.  She just took the darker and the damned with a such a delicate movement in a heavenly sentiment.

“We can always pray and ask God for help,” I’d hear her say easily.


Just yesterday, I was asked to give her eulogy.  In searching through thoughts, I looked back over years and saw the most beautiful landscape diligently cared for, a steady attended to life.

Her words and sayings echoed.  Her actions revisited me.

Simple.  Echoing behind and ahead.


Here’s some of what I shared.

If you sat for any length of time with Maw Maw Lucy, you’d know her fully well.  You’d notice her to be a lady of manners, faith, conversation and family.  Even my friends she’d only met once, maybe twice, would affectionately call her, Maw Maw Lucy.  She had a charming unassuming way about her that would comfortably draw you in and make you feel at home no matter the circumstance of life.

She shared secrets and kept secrets with her grandchildren, told those secrets and stories to her great grandchildren, knew her neighbors better than some know their own family, loved her children deeply and immovably and held tightly to a simple strong faith where in the end everything would work out just as it should.

I remember two distinct moments of Maw Maw Lucy that I’d like to share.

When I was young boy, my grandparents owned an Oldsmobile.  My Paw Paw drove careful and slow, mostly too slow for me and my sister’s liking.  We’d beg him to drive faster but he always stayed serious and steady at the wheel.  I remember one time in particular, Maw Maw Lucy was driving the Oldsmobile with just me and my sister in the car.  Of course, we both begged her to drive faster.  My sister implored her, “Maw Maw, drive fast like Daisy Duke on the Dukes of Hazard!!”  And to our amazement, she did. With a playful but fully serious tone she glanced back and told us, "hold on".  For the first time we felt that Oldsmobile speed faster than normal as we approached railroad tracks.

Remember how long cars were in those days...?  It felt liked we floated for miles.

She always took careful attention to involve herself into our context, to find way into our hearts.  Tending roots.

Another lasting moment is right after a particularly difficult time in my own little daughters’ lives.  They were devastated when my wife died.  Just right here in this same funeral home room, Maw Maw Lucy quietly sat with them as they leaned into her.  They cried, and I remember hearing her whisper to them that everything would be okay.  And they believed her.  Surely.  Forever.

She had a way of inspiring you to believe simply for good things in life no matter how difficult life sometimes seemed.

The goodness of life now and the hope of All ahead of us.  She believed in God, Jesus and Heaven, and trusted that in the end He was enough.

How do you measure 92 years in just a few minutes? Look around this room at my wonderful family and all of you she lovingly called friends.  There are hints of Maw Maw Lucy in each of our eyes.  Stories of her in our lives remain in each of our hearts.


What my grandmother left behind is a legacy that leads me still in her absence.  An easy trust continuing even in trembling times.

How grateful I am for my daughters to have really known her firsthand, their great grandmother!

Her life, legacy and passing sharpen my focus for family even more.  I can only hope now to leave something similar behind in my going.

{in memoriam // 07.06.20 - 10.28.12}