I was honored these last several weeks to have been able to spend countless hours with my Grama, together with my Mom, Uncle and her wonderful nurses and being there when she took her last breath and entered the Glory of God.
The beautiful moments I will always remember.....
~ Mom and I putting face cream, lipstick and french perfume on Grama whenever we arrived to her room from being away, she loved it.
~ when her eyes would gaze at some heavenly place for hours and she would call out to loved ones already there
~ the time my Mom and her Pastor sang her favorite song to her "Life High The Cross" as she lay there unable to speak but peace filled the room
~ when Mom and I walked in her room somewhat dressed up and she looked deep in my eyes and said "Pretty....pretty for me?"
~ the hospice nurse that came by on her day off to read the bible to Grama
~ walking in her room to see another nurse holding her hand and singing 'Amazing Grace" another of her favorite songs.
~ her favorite nurse Lucia who became like family, arriving to work moments after Grama had passed and was able to dress Grama in her prettiest night gown before she was taken away.
Below is what I read at Grama's funeral at St Paul's Lutheran Church Glen Burnie, Maryland, the church I was raised in.
Eulogy to My Beautiful Grama
My beautiful Grama was born in Baltimore, Maryland on January 8, 1919 to John and Emma Trader.
John was a tug boat captain for Arundel Corp. and Emma was a housewife.
Grama had two sisters, Florence who was stillborn, my dear Aunt Mae and her baby brother Buzzie, named after the family dog.
Her early years were spent in South Baltimore where her family was known by neighbors as " The Laughing Traders."
Grama adored her Dad. She loved going with him to watch the Orioles baseball team and could recite all the baseball players and the positions they played up until the end of her life.
Her hero's were Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmy Foxx all of whom she saw play with her Dad.
The two of them liked to eat hog head cheese, purple grapes and ice cream...which was her last meal.
On March 29, 1941, Grama married Benjamin Hiss.
They had two beautiful children, Emme and Jack. She said giving birth to them was the two happiest days of her life.
She saw first hand the men coming from and moving out to Vietnam.
She often had "her boys "over for Spaghetti or lasagna dinners. They all called her Mom, these were treasured memories to her and an important part of her life.
One of them, Frank James Gannon, married my Mom and is a treasure to our whole family!
She worked full time, kept a clean house, a beautiful lawn and garden, made time for friends and family always, and we never missed a Sunday at church.
Until her stroke, you could call Grama at 3am and she would wake right up and talk as long as you needed to!
I often made those late night calls as a teen as has my brother James and Uncle Jack.
She was filled with fight and tenacity, but her heart was tender and filled to the brim with Love for her family.
And I can't forget to mention her love of politics! She was a Republican through and through and was never shy to share her views.One of the few times she got cross with me was during the Obama - Bush election when I defended Obama and she feared living in Ct had finally turned me into a liberal.
(forgive me about that Grama, you were right!)
She took great pride in our country, our flag and had a deep love for our nation.
Most important of all was her love for Jesus Christ.
He has been the one sure thing in her life, when all else had fallen apart.
He has never left her, never forsaken her.
And so on September 30, 2012, Our sweet ,sweet Lord took her home, where she can watch over the beautiful family she created....uninhibited by age and illness, in His glorious Light.
I love you Grama and was happy to be in your inner circle.
I considered what Grama might say if she could stand before you today, after having been in God's glory, and I came across this blessing.
My Prayer For You
That like Job, God would surround you with a hedge of protection and that you would have greater blessings in the latter part of your life, from this day forward.
That like Abraham, you would grow wealthy with cattle, gold and silver.
That like Issac, you plant a field and reap a hundred fold harvest.
That like Jacob, with wisdom and discernment you would grow your flocks and your herds.
That like Joseph, the dream that Gods’ given you, would be, Salvation to many.
That like Moses, the Lord would reveal Himself to you and show you His glory.
That like Bezalel, who helped build the tabernacle, that the Lord would anoint you for the specific task that He has called you to accomplish.
That like Joshua, God would fill you with the Spirit of Wisdom.
That like The Children of Israel, you live in lands that you didn’t buy, with barns and houses that you didn’t build, drinking from springs and wells that you didn’t know existed and eating from vineyards that you didn’t plant, that He would bless the fruit of your trees, the grass of your fields and the calves of your herds, that He would bring the spring and autumn rains, and that there would be none sick among you and none barren.
That like David, God would give you a blueprint of what He would like you to build for Him.
That like Solomon, He would give you a wise and understanding heart.
That like Uzziah, there would be good men caring for your cattle in the foothills and that you would have a love and understanding of the soil.
That like Daniel, God would give you ten times the wisdom, favor and discernment of all those that don’t know Him.
and That like Peter, you cast your net on the right side of the boat and catch one hundred fold for your effort.
In Jesus Name, This is my prayer for you.”
I love you Grama forever and ever and Always.........