My uncle served in Navy during WWII on a destroyer in the South Pacific so he was entitled to military honors. The ceremony was very moving with the playing of taps and guns firing and the folding of the flag for my cousins. I appreciated the dignity with which the young service men performed their tasks. It was pretty special to see them salute the casket as it came out of the hearse draped with the US flag.
Having lived in Europe for so many years, I've missed out on certain family events that I would've liked to have been present for. So being home when Mel passed and being able to officiate the burial was very, very special for me.
After the service, we gathered at the historic Mission Inn in downtown Riverside. This charming and beautiful place has a great history to it, hosting several US Presidents for various occasions throughout the year. We sat outside on a lovely patio surrounded by these wonderful old buildings. It almost felt like we were in Europe.
My family left their families in Illinois in 1965 to move west and pursue life in California.
|My mom's family. She was the youngest daughter and endured life with 3 older brothers!|
So yesterday when we were gathered with Mel's sons Mike and Steve and their wives, Mike's son Josh, and another cousin, Tony, my mom's brother Dale's oldest, it was pretty neat.