Sister (Hubby's oldest sister) died last Saturday. He flew out this morning to Washington, DC for her funeral service, which is tomorrow. His whole family, those still living, are descending on DC to be in attendance.
We have been fielding calls all week from far-flung relatives inquiring if Hubby actually was going to attend. Interestingly, though Hubby is the most remote from the family and stayed away from them with no contact for nearly half a century, he is the one Sister's family has turned to, to provide Sister's side of the family information. Her husband, James, depended on Hubby to notify the entire East Coast clan, though we actually had no working phone numbers for them when we started out.
Then, of course, came the requests for music. Hubby has finally admitted that singing now is probably not on the agenda, but it did make us realize that Hubby needed to be in attendance. So we quickly acquired a round trip non-stop flight and rental cal for Hubby and I took a bereavement day from school to make sure that Hubby had wheelchair access on both ends of the flight.
We got Hubby off early this morning, though I dropped him at the wrong building in our three building airport and he missed the first flight. Still, it seems they got him out in a pretty timely manner and right now he's in DC coping with family business.
Sunday he returns, probably exhausted from the crush of family emotions but we are glad that he has had this chance to once again say goodbye to his sister who was so kind in the last several years -- and to see his entire family one more (and probably last) time. Jake is coming from Philly and he's 97. Hubby turned 75 in March. There is a two year difference between Hubs and Wiley (he's either 73 or 77 -- I can't remember). Those are the only siblings left of the once active 13 family members. Of course, cousins and nieces and nephews are all planning on coming. Sister had two sons, neither of whom married. And James' family will be there. I'm rather sorry not to get to see the whole clan gathered for one more reunion.
I'm glad, though, that I got to meet Sister last year and spend time with her. We laughed and told family stories and I enjoyed her immensely. She lived her life on her own terms, working right up to the day before she died at age 93. It has been an honor to know her.