Friday, June 24, 2016

She Took Me In

There was a viewing tonight, prepatory to the Gerald Melchin funeral tomorrow.  

Many of the Melchin family were there at the church.  

Evelyn, now 93, was sitting in a chair receiving people.  When I leaned over to give her my name she knew who I was.  Then she said my mother’s name.  “Wyora.  I loved her.  She took me in.  And she loved my family.  Someday I will see her again.  Wyora.”

Yes, I thought to myself.  All of us should be so lucky.

If you didn't get a chance to see the obituary of Gerald Melchin, you can look here.

Evelyn is 93 now and lives in Royal Oaks.

Shawna asked about Rebecca, since Shauna was her piano teacher many years ago.  

I stood in front of Judy Takahashi in the lineup.  Judy was one of Gerald’s caregivers in the last few weeks.  I commented to her that most of us know at least one thing that is bad about our friends or colleagues or acquaintances, but I couldn’t really think of anything bad about Gerald Melchin.  

While I was letting this roll around in my head I was thinking of the spin-off of this kind of goodness, since one of his sons comes to home teach at our house.  Brook came initially on a church assignment but his visits have transferred him into a trusted friend.  We know him as a man who will give help even when it is not convenient for him to do so.  I don’t know if Gerald had that same quality.  He must have been proud to have a son who stands so tall.

I stood behind a woman in the line-up who turned to me and said she thinks she knows me.  She had on a name tag: Sister Conrad.  I didn’t have on a nametag so I had one advantage there.  I gave her my name.  It turned out her maiden name was Wendy Markowski, Moiya and Glen.  She remembers both of you fondly. Strange how the past catches up with us, in this instance, in a heart-warming way.

My favourite part of the evening was seeing half a bag of miniature marshmallows on one of the chairs – the best part of families – that they span in age from the nonagenarian to babies, and all being taken care of at the same time.



  1. lovely. how wonderful to see Shauna!

  2. That would have been a lovely event to have witnessed.

  3. One thing about going to the viewing, or going to a funeral for that matter, is that people are open to sharing how the person being honoured has influenced them. I heard lots of that, both Friday night and then Saturday at the funeral. I suppose there are few enough times when we stop to think in the quiet of the day, about the many fine people who have passed through our lives. When one of President Melchin's children was mentioning that his dad had worked on communications while he was in the Armuy and that he was very good at it, he also said that Gerald had pointed out to those who were younger, that if he, too, were younger, would probably be a good texter right now.

    I loved hearing that lovely quiet sense of humour from him.