All about Marie

This is a story about our good friend Marie who passed away recently. I prepared it for her funeral to read as a tribute to this very special friend in my life.

All about Marie

It is hard to imagine the world without Marie.  Not only was she in the world, she helped run it!  Always a responsible person, her life held opportunities for her excellent leadership, her allegiance to her country and devotion to family and friends.  I still awaken needing to pinch myself and believe that Marie has died.

My husband Jack and I would not consider ourselves longtime friends of Bob and Marie.  Rather our friendship started perhaps seven years ago through church activities, neighborhood gatherings, and then finally the Irish Social Club.  Though we saw each other infrequently, we became good friends. We felt warmth, love of fun and true kinship with them.  We all had been married before so we would share stories of our other lives. Weaving into these memories, were new ones that we made together. We laughed a lot enjoying the spontaneity we shared as couples. They both would say out of hearing range from each other, that they had too been blessed with love a second time.

Several events in these last few years remain forefront in my mind.  When her son Billy’s wife was terminally ill with cancer, Marie called her every night and prayed. Sharing Bob’s ninetieth birthday party was a treat for many of us with her accurate planning of details that made the occasion unforgettable. Sitting with them at the Irish parties allowed us to enjoy great food, the music they both had arranged and eating Marie’s Irish soda bread on St. Patrick’s Day. All were fun times! When Bob was in the Nursing Home, we shared her loneliness realizing that things were going to change drastically in their lives. I think she always had the hope that maybe he could come to just one more dance…

When Marie called asking us to bring the gifts down the aisle at Bob’s Mass, we accepted with loving hearts. We knew that he was in a beautiful place but missed him terribly. The tears clouded my eyes as we walked down the aisle passing by wonderful people we had met through Bob and Marie.  She gave a beautiful luncheon after the service; of course at the VFW! We told her that Bob would have loved it especially knowing she was again in charge—that was our Marie.

So now, we all are in charge.  I know she smiles down on all of us today.  She lived a great life, loved her children, loved her friends, and loved two husbands. She exuded love through her love of God—I know He will take care of all the details.  I guess it is up to us to miss her, but live our lives knowing we all will meet again.

God Bless you Marie!

About the Author

Maryann Hartzell-Curran, a retired educator and counselor, has written a personal account of her journey through the first year of grieving the loss of her husband in her book, “From We to Me,” to help support those who have suffered the loss of a loved one. Maryann founded a successful family therapy practice and taught in the public and private sectors. She also founded and directed a church-based preschool in Lombard, Ill., and gained experience working with the elderly as director of a senior dining center. She has a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s degree in counseling from Illinois Benedictine University.

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