Thursday, December 07, 2006

Thursday Thirteen: Impressions at a Memorial Service

I've not posted a Thursday Thirteen list in a long time. I like lists. They are a genre of literature all to themselves. I'm not so fond of joining things. Therefore I will compromise. I reserve the option of posting a Thursday Thirteen list but will do it without using the formatting or linkage that go along with the original and official deeliebopper.

Today was Dr. Nancy Walker's memorial service. Below are thirteen thoughts or observations that ran through my head.

1. It is cold.

2. What wonderful people are Witt and Leslie Salley (who were of great help to her and were with her when she died)! How glad I am to have met them.

3. THAT was Nancy?! (On seeing a picture of her in a poofy dress in her teen years)

4. Her mother looks very much like her, only perhaps a little softer, more approachable.

5. Her sister has a wonderful sense of humor.

6. Having people get up and speak (a "Nancy roast" Nancy and a friend called it) is so much nicer than having a sermon! (Great Scott take note. Please no sermons at my funeral!)

7. While there was not an overabundance of flowers, the stories I heard told about her today make us all bloom into laughter over and over.

8. It is amazing how many lives a teacher of teachers (or a Teacher of Teachers, as Dr. George Jenson put it) can impact. She potentially influences and inspires not just her own students, but their students as well.

9. I did not know that she went back to finish her degree after her daughter's death. Somehow it seemed to me that she'd probably always been clicking through the halls of higher education, setting students quivering in their boots with one glance over her tiny wire-rimmed glasses.

10. Van Morrison's music can be perfect for a memorial service.

11. It is good to let down the guard of professional veneer and be human.

12. The passing of an exceptional person brings choking grief, but borne together with others who loved and appreciated her, that grief is somehow transformed into a shared joy in having known her.

13. Nancy was an exceptional person. One of the characteristics that made her such was that she treated those who knew her as exceptional people as well, worthy of being listened to, capable of accomplishing their goals, and unique and valuable in themselves. I was struck, as person after person, student after student, colleague after colleague stood to honor her, by how right she was.

2 comments:

alaiyo said...

Thank you, LuCindy. I thought about this all day yesterday and have been anticipating your writing about it.

Beth

Colleen said...

I especially liked #12. Thank you for sharing.