And So Begins My New Life

Join me as I embark on a new life and new career in Funeral Services.

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Location: Southeast, United States

I'm a Funeral Services graduate embarking on a new career. I graduated high school in 1981, served honorably in the United States Navy from 1982-1986, been married since 1986, and have one son. I've relocated to a new state and have begun working in my chosen profession of Funeral Services, and I've never been happier.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

My First Encounter With Death

I was very fortunate in that I was well into my 20's before I had my first close encounter with death. This is my Uncle Steve, brother of my mother and the youngest of three. He was only about 7 or 8 years older than me, and to me he was more of a big brother than he was an uncle. He had a fantastic sense of humor, and was a big fan of Chevy Chase. He even bore a slight resemblance to the SNL alum. He certainly had the same sense of humor.

I was sitting in the auditorium at my Naval Reserve meeting when I was paged with an emergency phone call. I remember thinking, "what kind of emergency could there possibly be?" I even left my hat in my chair, thinking I would be right back and pick up where I left off. I picked up the phone and my dad said, "Steve's dead." My brain shut down for a moment, and I muttered, "Steve? What? You mean Uncle Steve?" Of course, I knew the answer before I even asked the question. I guess I was stalling for time or trying to take it in; it had hit me like a ton of bricks. He was only 33.

What we didn't realize until later was that he had been having seizures, possibly epilepsy. He stayed up late one night to try to see Halley's Comet through his telescope, and he decided to have a sandwich. Right in the middle of his snack he had a seizure, apparently, and choked. His wife found him the next morning, unresponsive. She called an ambulance, but he didn't make it.

The drive to his hometown was the longest drive of my life. It seemed like it went on forever. When I arrived Grandma was crying her eyes out, and Grandpa was on the phone with friends, trying to explain to them what the arrangements would be. When we went to the funeral home for the viewing, I couldn't believe he was gone. They had done such a wonderful job. He looked very much like himself, and it seemed at any moment he could jump out of the casket and shout "Surprise!" at all of us. Actually, it would have been just like him to pull such a joke. Unfortunately, this was all too real. I don't think I ever cried so much in my life as I did those few days. He died shortly before I got married.


Blogger Marsha said...

What a shock, when a seemingly healthy young man just dies. How horrible. It is good that you are keeping your uncle alive in your thoughts and with this story.

By the way hello, I found you at blog village. My blog, family adventures, is also listed there.z

12:23 PM  
Blogger Granimore said...

Thanks for stopping by, Marsha. His death was a huge shock to all of us.

6:22 PM  
Blogger Sharkbait said...

Sorry to hear about Steve. Thanks for posting this; it is touching to read.

6:05 PM  

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