Just a quick word. My uncle John passed away yesterday, Tuesday, Dec. 4th, 2012. He had been fading and hadn't been eating for over a week, or so I heard. The quality of life was gone and he was just physically (what little there was left of his shrinking body) there. No communication.
He was one of our icons. He was a good man, hard working, honest as the day is long, generous to everyone who was in need, always ready to help. 92 yrs. old. That whole generation set a standard for us of the next couple of generations that we will have to struggle to live up to. There are only two more from his family who are left on this earth: Rose, who is going on 95 in a short time and is bright and alive but is now the proud owner of her very own pacemaker; and Casey, who is 86, dealing with macular degeneration, but still drives, at least for now. His wife, Rose, has other problems that keep him and her both busy and mostly at home as health problems keep them from doing a lot of traveling. She is also a lovely lady and it was my pleasure and privilege to stay with them for almost a week when I tried to visit all the cousins in the Milwaukee area. I got my name from Casey. He was my favorite, probably because he was closest to me in age (there were 14 kids in his family--not a loser in the bunch) and is 9 yrs. older than I am. He had the task of being the court appointed executor of Uncle John's affairs and had to do a lot of work in that connection. Now Rose's sister also passed away as well as the father-in-law of his daughter Suzie, so they are really stressed now with three funerals to be part of. John will be buried tomorrow, Thursday, Dec. 6th at 2pm. I am happy that I am here to lead the service. I haven't had a chance to do that for almost half a century now.
I will leave this page for now. We are having a closing Mass and cocktail party and then going out for a final dinner (the last supper for our sabbatical group. We have been together since August 22nd and tomorrow everyone scatters to his or her destination.). It is a say moment at the end of an incredibly beautiful and fruitful time. But, let me leave it at that for now. I am running out of time. Cas.