Tomorrow in Southern Mass we'll be having the memorial service for a great lady whom I've had the privilege of knowing for some 35 years now — my wife's Auntie '•' — as she liked to call herself.
In this picture you can really see Auntie Dot's spirit — the “I see you” fire in her eyes. She looked at you with a kind gentle love, a sense of genuine interest in you. I always remember talking to her and getting a real sense that she cared about me and really wanted to know who I was. She had a great smile and a warm, genuine way of being.
For a more recent picture of Auntie '•' along with some of her extended family, click here for my blog article about when Auntie Dot turned 100 years old.
|Sept 2nd : As it turns out, the memorial service was to celebrate the lives of both Auntie '•' and her beloved husband, Uncle Buster. Though he passed away in Jan 2002, she kept his urn with her for more than a decade because of their commitment to be laid to rest together. It was very sweet.
To the right, above, one of the great granddaughters sings “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” as her Dad accompanies her on guitar. Below that the Chadwick gravestone holds an amazing testimonial about this family : Buster's name does not appear on the stone so that the name of a dearly beloved family friend would have a place of honor for eternity.
We sang beloved hymns, prayed together, and many more family stories were told during the service. It was very inspirational. It left me with an intense feeling of pride just being part of a family whose legacy of Faith and Strong Family Values goes (literally) back to immigrants who came over on the Mayflower. As '•' clearly documented in her monumental genealogy “Hold High The Torch — The Genealogy of 350 Years of OUR REDFIELDS in America”, the grand children with us now are the 14th generation. She also published a truly amazing book about her place on the Redfield family tree : “The Last Twig”, among others.
The impressive Chadwick gravestone, dating from 1887, is just one of the name markers at the site where they held the memorial service. Several others names — including Buster (Frank Goddard Chadwick, Jr.) and '•' (Doris Redfield Chadwick) — are on flat markers visible on the ground.
I have posted some more pictures that Ruth gave us after the memorial service so click here for snapshots (or the SlideShow) of these treasured images of (mostly) the Alexander side of the extended Chadwick / Redfield family.
In closing, let us all be grateful… and remember the responsibility that comes with belonging to such an amazing family — to live those family values in our own lives as we pass them on to our future generations.