My mother died last week. She was a few days short of her 98th birthday, and had had a long life of many triumphs and sorrows. She was ill and enfeebled for the last few years, but her mind was still sharp and she retained her sense of humor. She was ready to go, and had prayed to be allowed to join my father for many years, but she was the most important person in my formative years and I miss her terribly.
Some of my earliest memories are of the endless questions I asked her and her remarkably patient answers. She had been trained as a microbiologist and had a lively interest in all the sciences. She had been greatly cheered by the election of President Obama.
We had a very nice funeral with all of her children and many of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, but that really doesn't help much.