Burial or Graveside Services
Grief & Guidance
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The lighting of a Memorial Candle not only provides a gesture of sympathy and support to the immediate family during their time of need but also provides the gift of extending the Book of Memories for future generations.
My sister Susan was the youngest of the four sisters that I was raised with. Each of my sisters was a mother in some sense of the word, to me, as my mother herself was so troubled and through no real fault of her own, unavailable to me sometimes. There were nine years chronologically between Susan and I. I make no exaggeration when I say Susan loved me unconditionally, and took care of me in one way or another, through my whole life thus far. I never, but never, knew a woman who worked and worked so very hard through her whole life. She never shied away from any hard work. For that matter, she never shied away from anything. Nothing was so difficult that it couldn’t be confronted head on and dealt with, whether it be manual labour or being a good listener and counsellor, in this case, to me particularly. She was a consummate crafter, artist, musician with a thick, rich contralto voice that had been trained in bel canto style singing. She baked, sewed and was the fastest I’d ever seen in my life with a crochet hook or knitting needles. I never saw her cry or weep my whole life. Susan fought, and fought hard for everything she had. She'd been a farm labourer doing thankless work usually done by men in her teens. She became a bus driver and eventually a safety inspector and instructor. Then, against all odds, she went back to school and became a registered nurse with additional qualifications in critical care nursing (emergency and icu). Susan taught me how to dance, vibrate and shimmy to our favourite song "Surfin' Bird", and no one on earth could do that dance like her. She used to play the piano and sing for us or play for me to sing when we were children. Closest in age to me of the siblings I was raised with, she was one of my pillars of strength. I chose Susan to represent our family in speaking at our wedding. She was looking forward to helping James and I unpack and build our new home in a few weeks. She was eagerly anticipating our next drag show in the area because she just loved seeing me on stage and was one of my staunchest fans. This woman, my sister Susan, has been taken from me. At the most unsettling age of 66. I am distraught, angry, hurt, finding an empty in a place in my heart, and worst of all, uncomfortably questioning why. Susan I desperately hope you know who and what you were to me and how deeply I love you.