When Does Someone Die?

On a funeral service some time ago, Joe was talking to Deacon Jim about life…..and death.  Deacon Jim said “When does someone die, when does someone leave us……only when we stop talking about them.”  Our dear friend, Patti, lost her Mother recently - we called her to tell her how sorry we were and to reminisce about Kitty.  During the conversation, Joe told Patti when Deacon Jim had told him.  She told her son, Tom, and he was inspired to base his Eulogy on this at Kitty’s funeral service.  With his permission, we would like to share it with you:

When does someone die?  When do they leave us?  When we stop talking about them.”

A funeral is a celebration of life.  And MeMa celebrated life with love.  Everyone always said that MeMa was so kind that she would cook dinner for the devil if he was hungry.  My best memories of MeMa are of her preparing food.  In the kitchen cooking her famous meatballs, even at Thanksgiving.

With Bobby, Rhonda and Aunt Anita trying desperately to make MeMa laugh so hard she snorts and PopPop…you wouldn’t know he was cracking up hysterically until you watched him with that silent tearing laugh.

Or preparing Sunday lunch, leaving this Church to run to the bakery for glazed donuts.  John and I would go with her so we could pick out the cookies.  Then all the Church parishioners would come to the house (but only after smoking a pack of cigarettes in the choir room).

Then a few years went by and it was just immediate family:  Aunt Anita, Bob, Mum, John and me.  Then a few more years went by and it was just Bob and John and me.  Then, well…There was a new Church and new traditions.

In life we move on, we move through the time, grow and adapt. What happens to US when we die?  We don’t like to talk about it.  We say “I’m sorry for your Loss” because that’s what we’re trained to say.  I’m sorry to bring bad news, but…we will all die.

But have we lost anything? Our body is gone but what happens to us? Are we gone? Not if we talk.  We remember.  We reminisce.  We tell stories of tastes and smells and laughs and tears.  And through that - they live while we bond and share and laugh and cry.  So, as long as we don’t forget.  Don’t’ stop talking.  Don’t stop sharing.  Don’t stop laughing and crying.  So whether to you she was Mrs. Pro, Kitty, Mum or MeMa, she will always be with us.

Remembering Katherine M. Pro “Kitty” – 1924 - 2017