Wednesday, June 11, 2014


To my son Tommy,

The call came in around four thirty in the morning. We decided to let you sleep, though your mother ran out the door lamenting that she did not stay the night. Your great grandmother Nansy had passed. You are still sawing wood up in your bed right now. You will learn about it soon enough and soon join the other family members for hugs and tears. You will get dressed up in your finest and go to a funeral home where both loved ones and people you hardly know will offer their prayers and condolences as they shed tears and muster smiles, often at the same time. We will once again try to explain death to a five year old and you will look at us with that uncertain look but you will say you understand as you try to make us feel better.

I have news for you, no matter if you are five or going on forty, you will never quite understand death. We probably won't fully understand it till it is our turn to receive the ultimate lesson. What I do know, and can tell you now, is death is a part of life. What I believe, through my faith, is that Jesus, through his power and mercy, has made death itself the gateway to eternal life. What I have learned, through my experiences with family members dying, is that now is the time that love and family are of the utmost importance.

Our heart aches at our loss and heaven's gain. She was a good person, a saintly woman, and she represented most everything good in life that a human can aspire to accomplish or to be. She only wishes for us to know that we were loved by her and that was obvious in every thing she did. Our only hope is she knows how much we loved her back. Rest in peace Audrey Maggio. May God grant that we see you again in the brightness of His everlasting glory.

Sincerely with love and tears from your dad,

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