Saturday, January 9, 2010

Goodbye to a Grand Lady

I just got back from my Aunt Edna’s funeral. Will it sound disrespectful to say that I had a blast? I don’t think so, because she would have wanted everyone to have a good time. It was a Gubler family reunion...and a LaVerkin town reunion. I loved seeing my cousins, aunts, (no uncles left!), nieces and nephews…and old-time friends from long ago.

Love fills my heart (and eyes!) every time I see my cousins. Isn’t it weird? We really don’t know each other when you think about it. Yet there is a strong bond that never dies. We don’t have to know the details about each other’s lives (though that would be fun!) to feel a loving relationship. We are FAMILY…and that is forever. How blessed I am to be related to such wonderful people.

How do I sum up what my beloved Aunt Edna meant to me in my life?

Edna was…well, Edna was extraordinary in every way. She was one of those people who lit up the whole room when she entered. She was witty and funny without even trying to be. She had a way of wording things that was unique…no one else used the mother tongue quite like she did. I hung on her every word. Whenever I heard her give a talk or presentation, I didn’t want it to end. She would have us laughing during one sentence and wiping a tear in the next.

I remember a program that someone put together years ago, to honor Edna. It was something like, “This is Your Life, Edna Gubler.” They surprised Edna and made her sit in a big easy chair at the front of the stage. The most vivid memory I have is that someone tied her arms behind her back so she couldn’t talk. She must have had some Italian blood lurking in there somewhere, because she DID talk with her hands, arms, and facial gestures. With her arms out of the picture, she sat quietly for the first time in the whole program…well, sort of. She still had her expressive face!

Edna seemed kind of famous to me when I was younger…like my own mother did. They were both high-profile people with extra-special talents. I always felt proud to tell people who my mother was…and I felt that same way about Aunt Edna. Everyone knew her and loved her.

When I think of Aunt Edna, I think of her laughing. She always seemed to get such a kick out of life. Whenever I would talk to her, she always gave me the feeling that she thought I was so talented and clever…and I believed her. It made me shine even more. Then I found out she gave EVERYONE that same feeling. She had that gift.

My cousins, Patricia, Claire, and James…Edna’s kids…talked in the funeral today. Just as in life, Aunt Edna had us alternately chuckling and weeping in her passing as my cousins (her children)shared her life history, and what it was like having her for a mother. They did their mom proud today! I would like a copy of each of their talks. I think Clairey (sp?) posted some of her thoughts on her blog, click here.

I will miss you, Auntie Edna. Tell my dad and mother hi for me!

Here are some snaps from the funeral...I'm too lazy to label all the people, but I would do it if someone insisted. Just know that they are my siblings, my cousins, my nieces and nephews...all people that I love.

This is a LaVerkin face that I think is awesome...Essie Lempens...who is almost 90. She still plays the accordian and various other instruments. She is awesome!


Ada said...

Thanks for sharing! Loved being there with the group yesterday. Reunions are never long enough. . .

Matt said...

Aunt Edna sounds so amazing! It sounds like you had some great role models growing up, and they rubbed of on you. You are incredible too, and you make anyone you talk to feel so important. I thought it was just me though haha. Thanks for this post.

Matt said...

That last comment was from Teala signed into Matt's account....whoops. I'm sure Matt would've said the same thing though.

jen said...

What a beautiful sweet tribute to your Aunt Edna. You made me want to know her! If she is anything like you, I love her immensely.

Claire said...

Thank you for coming and thank you for this tribute of my MOM!!

She Loved you and really did think you clever and talented! We all do!

Love YOU!!

2pattyesque said...

Thanks, Lolene! What a great tribute! You ARE great. Mom knew it and we know it. :-) Love ya!

Julianne said...

I DID read it a bit ago. Just didn't comment. But I will now!

Loved the post. Funeral sounded like it was great.

I love that lady's face, too.

Miss you all already.

Ann said...

Lolene, thanks so much for posting the tribute and the pictures, I was unable to be there and my heart has been aching. Seeing the pictures really helped. I miss the old, growing up in LaVerkin days. So much of growing up for me centered around the Gubler family and hanging out at Patty's house. Really I can't thank you enough....