My father used to give us this look that sort of said, in a faintly impish way, “what are you doing?”
The look had layers of humor and awareness and love. My sisters and I knew this look well.
Sometimes I think that Auggie is giving me the same look.
V. Richard Carter would be 83 years old today. These two photos are from 65 years ago, as he was matriculating at Hannibal-LaGrange College as a freshman. He is with his parents in front of his dorm.
After spending some time with my stepmother and my sisters and stepsisters Tuesday evening (all in prep for cleaning out my father’s belongings from the house on 3rd St. Terr.), I stopped by Lee’s Summit Historical Cemetery.
My father’s stone is now set, next to Mom.
My father and his brother, Jim, as children:
I had not seen these photos before. They were tucked in some stuff that Pop retrieved from De Soto when they packed up my grandmother’s belongings in 1998 . . . .
On this Friday, I am returning to my home, my bed, my Auggie in Saint Louis.
I’ll teach a few lessons on Friday and Saturday, then go to Advent IV and Christmas Eve services at Christ Church Cathedral.
Christmas Day will be low-key at home, with a buffet dinner somewhere with a couple of friends.
With Pop Christmas 2010.
The work in Lee’s Summit is done, for now. Pop is laid to rest, and hugs and “I love you”s have been exchanged.
Now to get on with the task of living.
I wrote a colleague this week, and share the same thing with you now:
My sisters and I, and our entire family, and especially his wife, are all clear-eyed people of faith. We know that we are burying his shell, but that his essence lives on. Our grief is real, but so is our comfort in the sure and certain hope of glory.
I’m grateful for the comforting outpouring of encouragement and kindness from others these past few days, and for your own support.
To all who have sent supportive notes and Facebook comments and texts these past few days, I am grateful beyond words for the host that has surrounded me in spirit and in truth.
With my father and sister Karen in Columbia, Missouri, at the first house my parents ever owned, in 1965.
We lay Pop to rest today.
Pop’s obituary in the Lee’s Summit Journal today: