Weekend Reflections on Anniversary of Mom’s Funeral and Memorial Service – July 11 and 12

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As I mentioned in my July 7th post, this month marks the 4-year anniversary of my Mom’s departure from this life into her eternal  reward in heaven, where she joined my Dad who passed away in 2002. July 11, 2011, was the day we laid her earthly body to rest next to my Dad’s at the Veterans Cemetery in New Hampshire.

 

Memories of Mom and Dad
Memories of Mom and Dad

 

An Air Force Honor Guard was present and performed a beautiful flag-folding ceremony with the flag from Mom’s casket (just as an Army Honor Guard did at our Dad’s service).

 

One of the youngest soldiers kneeled and presented the flag to our brother. We all cried and even that young soldier had tears in his eyes as he thanked us for our Mom’s service to the country.

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Gathering at Gilford Beach in NH.
Gathering at Gilford Beach in NH

 

That evening, after having a birthday party for my brother as Mom had wanted us to do (his birthday is July 11), we all went to Gilford Beach – where we all spent many summers as a family – and watched the sunset over Lake Winnipesaukee. It was a peaceful and soothing ending to an emotional day.

~~*~~

Mom's Memorial Service Display in Church.
Mom’s Memorial Service Display in Church

 

Then, on July 12th, family members and friends gathered at the church in Laconia, NH, to honor the life of my Mom and share precious memories. It was a beautiful ceremony, as family, friends, and many nurses who had worked with Mom over her 50+ year nursing career, paid tribute to her life and what she had meant to us all. We family members wore purple clothing and accessories–Mom’s favorite color–in her honor. After the main service, we had a reception with refreshments, and lots of displays of pictures and special mementos for everyone to enjoy.

 

Mom's Memorial Reception
Mom’s Memorial Reception

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My Mom had a daily devotional calendar with quotes from Max Lucado’s book, Traveling Light  (which I now have in my home). Ironically, the theme of the devotionals over the days between when Mom passed on and the day of her funeral…were about how Jesus, as our Shepherd, guides us from the valley of the shadow of death into His eternal presence. Here are some of those lines:

 

“He knows the path. He has walked this trail many times. He will lead the flock to the mountains. ‘Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me (Psalm 23:4).”

 

“He will lead us to the high country. When the pasture is bare down here…our Shepherd will lead us out of the flat lands. He will take us to the mountain by way of  the valley. He will guide us to His house through the valley of the shadow of death.”

 

“We all have to face death. In a life marked by doctor appointments, dentist appointments, and school appointments, there is one appointment that none of us will miss: the appointment with death.  ‘Everyone must die once, and after that be judged by God’ (Hebrews 9:27).” 

 

“BUT…I will fear no evil; for YOU are with me.” 

 

–Max Lucado in “Traveling Light” [devotionals for dates July 7 to 11]

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Thank you for visiting this weekend, as I made a  change from my usual format to reflect on this special 4th anniversary of remembering my Mom, as she left this life and entered eternal life. Among her final words to us were, “I’m ready to go, to meet my Lord and my Ben.” [My Dad’s name is Ben].

 

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So what are YOUR thoughts?

 

Have you lost someone special to you? Do you like the idea of celebrating the life of a loved one, rather than getting too weighed down with sorrow at their passing?

 

Do you believe you and your loved ones are “ready to go” and that you will see loved ones again some day who have already passed on?

17 Comments

  1. Ginger

    What a great way to remember and celebrate your mom.

    12 . Jul . 2015
  2. Robin Masshole mommy

    So sorry for your losses. Military funerals are so beautiful, though.

    12 . Jul . 2015
  3. Terri Ramsey Beavers

    What a beautiful tribute to your mom. We lost our step dad and 4 other family members in the past 4 years. It’s always hard to let them go but I think celebrating their life is better than grieving their loss. I haven’t figured out to do this yet though.

    12 . Jul . 2015
  4. Shann Eva

    I’m sorry about your mom’s passing .I know today must be a hard day .
    Shann Eva recently posted..July Goals – Mid Month Check-up

    12 . Jul . 2015
  5. Lolette Stephenson

    Yes I definitely believe I will see loved ones again. In a completely different realm. What a journey it will be.
    Lolette Stephenson recently posted..HERE Are the Pictures !!!

    12 . Jul . 2015
  6. Salma

    Such a beautiful memorial and tribute to your mother Karen.
    Salma recently posted..Meal Plan – July 13-19, 2015

    12 . Jul . 2015
  7. Jolleen Ruiz

    I lost my dad almost 9 years ago, coming up in a few weeks actually, and I always have a hard time. I don’t think it ever really gets easier. But celebrating his life instead of being sad that he is no longer here, really does help. I am so thankful for the time I had with my dad. And will always treasure it. Great post!
    Jolleen Ruiz recently posted..Best Places to Visit on the California Coast!

    12 . Jul . 2015
  8. Cynthia @craftoflaughter

    So sorry for your loss. What a beautiful way to celebrate her life!

    12 . Jul . 2015
  9. Melanie T. Campbell

    My father had a military funeral also and it was gripping to watch the honor guard carry his casket to the little chapel on the grounds of the military cemetery. He is buried in Rittman, Ohio along with rows of other soldiers. It almost tore my sister’s heart out when they handed the flag to her. I and my brother were also there. It was a fitting tribute to a courageous life.

    12 . Jul . 2015
  10. sacha

    *hugs* my grandmother who raised me passed away 11 years ago and i still cant believe it ; ( *tears* is like something unexplainable

    12 . Jul . 2015
  11. Elizabeth O.

    What a beautiful tribute to your mom. I’m sure it’s still hard for the family. Sending hugs and prayers your way.

    13 . Jul . 2015
  12. Ourfamilyworld

    What a beautiful way to celebrate your mom’s life. My father in law passed away last month and I agree that celebrating life makes it easier for all of us.
    Ourfamilyworld recently posted..Movies Kids Can Watch This Summer with Their Grandparents

    13 . Jul . 2015
  13. Francene Stanley

    Your memorial day sounds wonderful. How right to honor her memory.
    Yes, I believe we will meet our loved-ones in Heaven. My mother, father, step-mother, son and daughter are all waiting to welcome me when the time is right for me to go.

    13 . Jul . 2015
  14. Lori Bosworth

    That is lovely that you honoured her memory after four years and the service sounds beautiful. Four years is not that long.
    Lori Bosworth recently posted..Pirate Life Opens on Centre Island + Giveaway

    13 . Jul . 2015
  15. CourtneyLynne

    Awwww this was such a lovely way to remember your mom! Sorry about her passing.

    13 . Jul . 2015
  16. R U S S

    This is such a sweet post and what you’ve done is a nice gesture to remember your mom and celebrate her life. Sorry to hear about your loss.
    R U S S recently posted..Side Trip: Batu Caves, Selangor, Malaysia

    14 . Jul . 2015
  17. Celeste

    I am so sorry to hear about your loss. This is such a sweet post on remembering your mom.

    16 . Jul . 2015

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