I have photos to download, stuff to post...but that will come...later.
Lest you haven't figured it out (yet), I am all about remembering. Paying attention to the past for what it can teach us going forward.
Tonight I am remembering my cousin, George David Rennie. Like a number of our tribe, he went by his middle name (as did my aunt; as did my mother; as did my father for much of his life; as do I; as does my son)...
|G. David Rennie - December 2, 1923 - June 25, 2015|
shown here with one of his many great-grandchildren
David was a cousin of mine several times removed...but only on paper. In real life, he was a close as a 'phone call (he lived his life without a computer. Imagine that!)
I didn't really get to know him till sometime in the late 1990s when my Aunt Alice Rennie -- then, herself in her nineties -- needed to be moved to a nursing home. She was the typical spinster-tookcareofherparents-nevermarried-nochildren person... As the only child of her oldest brother (baby brother had no children), I was her only heir. Because I'd married and moved several thousand miles across the country, and because she knew him well (having taught him in first grade) David became the Executor of her Estate, but I venture to say he did little in that time after her death without checking in with me first.
He and his dear wife, Audrey, took me in when I went East to take care of things, to bury Aunt Alice, and later (with my step-sis) to bury my/our mother, and still later...to bury my husband.
|(L) to (R): My father, John Gillies Rennie;|
my husband, Howard Martin Blank;
my uncle, Donald Frederick Rennie
Such kindness, love and kinship runs deep in many families...maybe in most families. It is not always obvious in these days of violence and lost souls...but it is true today, in my family. In the phone call from David's youngest son, Randy, closest in age to me, who recognized that I needed to hear the news of David's death by mouth, from one family member to another, not merely by text or e-mail or Facebook message, but in person...as close as we can get across the vast land that stretches from Quebec to Alberta.
I will call him in the morning. I will look online for the obituary in the Montreal Gazette. I will print it off and put it in my journal. I will donate wherever is deemed appropriate (because I cannot send baking)...and I will remember.
Remember me when I am gone away,
Gone far away into the silent land;
When you can no more hold me by the hand,
Nor I half turn to go yet turning stay.
Remember me when no more day by day
You tell me of our future that you plann'd:
Only remember me; you understand
It will be late to counsel then or pray.
Yet if you should forget me for a while
And afterwards remember, do not grieve:
For if the darkness and corruption leave
A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
Better by far you should forget and smile
Than that you should remember and be sad.*
*Christina Georgina Rossetti - 1830-1894