Monday, November 14, 2005

More Sadness for My Family

I spent the past few days in Reno, Nevada, where my Uncle Cal passed away yesterday. His wife and children, some of his grandchildren, and Nurse Sis and I were able to be there for him and he knew it, which I hope was helpful and comforting to him. Uncle Cal was Mom's big brother and only sibling, and his death so soon after hers is quite a blow.

Out of respect for his family, I don't feel free (or inclined) to share many details about his passing, which had both horrific and transcendant moments. I was constantly conscious of the fact that all decisions were up to my Aunt Norma and their children; I figured my role was to listen, support, and advise when asked, and to try to make sure that, whatever happened, they'd have no regrets. With Mom's experience so fresh in our minds, I think Nurse Sis and I were able to help our family navigate some rough waters. Only time will tell if we succeeded.

Uncle Cal at Mom's birthday party in Mom's Cancer.

Uncle Cal was a huge influence on me. He and my aunt took in Mom when she was a young single mother with two brats in tow and made a warm home for us. Until I was 10, he was the father figure in my life. His two sons, both younger than me, went on to become pretty good baseball players; I joked that he was so good at teaching them because he made all his mistakes first on me. He was a great man who will be greatly missed.


Lynne said...

Brian, I'm so sorry about your uncle's passing. You've had two big hits in a very short time. Both mother and father ....

Please accept my sympathies.

patricia said...

Brian, this is just terrible.

I'm so very sorry. And quite frankly, at a loss for words.

La redaccion said...

i´m sorry for this...
i was passing by.
i liked your blog, cause i wanna be a writer in the future..

take care.

Norma said...


Thank you for this article, and your prescence at the time of our loss. It meant a lot to Cal, I know. I will always remember. Love you,
Norma Whalen

BrianFies said...

I appreciate everyone's kind thoughts. Platon, the only advice I have about writing is that you do as much of it as you can anywhere you can.

Aunt Norma, I just wish I could have done more, but it's a time when no one can do enough. Talk to you soon.