more of grandma...

this is a bit of my grandma's obituary. her viewing was last night. and her funeral was today.
  
E. Arlene Shank
E. Arlene Shank, age 86, formerly of Holtwood, passed away on Thursday, May 23, 2013 at Fairmount Homes, Ephrata.

She was born in Willow Street, daughter of the late Jacob and  Flora Good Hess. She was the wife of the late E. Benjamin Shank who passed away November of 2001. She was a member of River Corner Mennonite Church of Conestoga, PA. She assisted her husband on the family farm and also provided transportation to the Amish community. She loved flower gardening and working outdoors.

Surviving are 5 children: Deborah S. wife of Richard L. Buckwalter of New Holland, Flora "Flo," wife of Eldon Lehman of Mercersburg, PA, Jeanette, wife of Larry Yoder of Harrington, DE, Joseph B. Shank of Wernersville, John H. husband of Debra Denlinger Shank of Willow Street; 17 grandchildren, 35 great grandchildren; 4 siblings: Miriam Gockley of Lancaster, Warren husband of Verna Manning Hess of Willow Street, Flora Ober of Willow Street, Oliver husband of Dorothy Witmer Hess of Russellville, KY. She was preceded in death by 7 siblings: Clarence, Henry, Wilbur, Elizabeth, Wayne Hess, Lillian Myers, and Mildred Mundt.

There will be a viewing at the Wheat Ridge Chapel of Fairmount Homes, 333 Wheat Ridge Drive, Ephrata, PA on Sunday, May 26th, from 6 to 8 p.m. There will be a memorial service on Monday at River Corner Mennonite Church, 524 River Road, Conestoga, PA at 11 a.m. with Pastor David Gochnauer officiating. There will be no viewing on Monday; the family will greet friends following the service. Private interment will take place in the church cemetery prior to the memorial service. The family would like to thank Fairmount Homes for the excellent care their mother received. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Fairmount Homes Benevolent Fund, 333 Wheat Ridge Drive, Ephrata, PA 17522. Arrangements by the Shivery Funeral Home, Christiana and  Paradise.


this was one of my most favorite funerals ever. maybe it's just because it was my grandma, but i thought it was beautiful. i remember my grandfather's funeral being so neat too...but i was with my grandma much more than my pappy, and felt like i knew her more...i remember learning so much about my pappy at his funeral, which was also neat...but that was also 12 years ago, i was newly married, with no children, so i was a little different of a woman then, than i am now. :) some highlights i don't want to forget would be:

  • lots of crying. and this sounds so silly, because i complain all the time about crying. i don't know if you noticed the big family listed above...i have 13 cousins on this side. we are all married, barely, :) and a lot of us have children of our own. it was so beautiful for me to look around and see so many of her grandchildren just crying. and crying. and crying. it was so touching. happy tears of course, but a lot of sad ones too. it was so neat to hear how much we are all going to miss her. i wonder if she knew how much we loved her? i wonder if she knew how much we will treasure being a part of her life and legacy of love? i hope so. but probably not.
  • of course, a highlight was my sister and i sharing about our memories, most of which i already wrote about here. we bawled our way thru it. but i am so proud of us. we are criers, so this is not something we would normally do. we did it for my grandma, and my mom, and well. i just couldn't tell my dad no. :) i do think it was healing. and it was so good to s.t.r.e.t.c.h. out of my comfort zone...even if i did stand before a crowded church, and wrinkle and contort my face in tears. :(
  • i loved hearing my aunt flo share about the siblings memories of their mom.
  • i loved hearing what some of my other cousins memories were, and how that jogged my memory even furthor...back to their farmhouse kitchen, which i had forgotton about.
  • i loved listening to the scripture that grandma had picked out for this day, and singing (or in my case, listening, since i was too busy crying, :(  )  her favorite songs at her funeral.
  • i loved listening to my brothers talk about hearing from the Lord about grandma's legacy, and asking us to stand, and carry on grandma's legacy of love. i love how they called on my uncle joe, and asked him to look at them, when they were speaking to him...that life is full of disappointment and hurt, and that is not our legacy...it was a very moving time. my uncle joe has struggled thru life with a bi-polar diagnosis.
  • i loved listening to my dad pray. he's a pastor. and he hardly ever cracks under pressure. not even at my grandma's funeral. he is full of wisdom.
  • i loved looking at my mom. and seeing her cry. and starting to cry all over again. thinking about how painful it will be to lose her one day. and how i need to start over and make the most of each moment i have with her. and my dad. :)
  • i loved talking to a lot of my cousins, and no, i didn't talk to near all of them...i am hoping between matt and i, that maybe we have almost everyone covered? the cousins don't see each other often.
  • i loved hearing my cousin, colby and his wife, cindy, are pregnant with their first baby, due in november.
  • i loved seeing my grandma's siblings. especially sis. she has always reminded me the most of my grandma. her voice. her mannerisms. loved chatting with her.
  • i was grateful and thankful my husband could make it. we got our last house of chicks this morning. at 7 am, the hatchery called and gave me their condolances...so i started crying already then, on the phone, :(  , but they delivered our chicks almost 2 hours early, so that matt could make the funeral.
  • i loved that someone told me last night that my sister and i looked like grandma's pictures of when she was young...
  • i loved seeing my grandfather's brother, david...he has always reminded me of my pappy...i just kept looking at him. he was sad today.
  • i loved being complemented by another aunt...how often i packed up my 5 kids and went to visit my grandma. you know. i have 5 kids. that's what i do. somedays it's easy. somedays it's hard. and i was a little bit hard on myself, for not getting over to visit my grandma enough...and it felt good to be acknowledged for the effort i did make. we can always do more. always.
  • i loved seeing and talking to my aunt cheryl. i do not see her often either.
  • i loved that it was a beautiful warm sunny memorial day. and was reminded life doesn't stop, as i was driving on those twisted turny farm roads, watching farmer after farmer baling...(matt is doing that now at 7:46 p.m.)
  • i loved hearing the pastor tell us it is our job to pray for our families now...grandma is not here to do it. and that is something i think about from time to time, as our older generation dies off, that it is our turn to be prayer warriors, not just for our kids, and our families, but for our nation and churches as well.
  • i loved realizing how important family is. again.
i still can't believe my grandma is gone...

off to tuck the kids into bed. it's been a long day.
xo.






Comments

Angie Myer said…
That funeral was so wonderful & special! You & Megan did a fantastic job -- everyone did actually! :) Take care!
Love,
Ang

Popular Posts