Growing up in a rural community near a small ranching and farming town, I would know all of my grandparents and they would be an extension of my parents. During busy high school sport seasons, I would live during the week with Dad’s parents.
Too many birthday’s to count would be spent at Mom’s Moms house. All the cousins would gather when they came from out of town for a visit. We would have huge dinners, celebrations of Christmas and whenever my parents had an evening event, we would stay with Grandma Hale (or at her house when we were mostly old enough.)
She would accompany me to Little Britches rodeos with our big camper and trailer. She would cheer me on while completing a crossword. We lived on her ranch, that of her Mothers. She would help with branding dinners, chicken plucking, gardening and canning.
She was cool, practical, wise, funny. I respected her. I trusted her. I loved her very much.
This evening Grandma Hale left us on this Earth. Her two daughters, a son-in-law, a grandson, and a great granddaughter would be beside her as they said goodbye.
Selfishly we are so grateful to have seen her just two weeks prior. To have shared in stories about the past, issues of the day over steak and fajita dinners. To engage in learning about the new Kindle Fire and debates about whether anyone in the family had been cremated, not knowing the decision would be faced so soon. To have laughed together one last time.
I realize now how truly wonderful it is to have had such an example from my Grandma. That at 96 she would outlive my Mother and would contribute to the better part of my life.
Her obituary is here.