Friday, September 16, 2011

For Tink

His name nickname was Tink. Today I learned that he is gone, so for the love of Tink, I write this blog.

Mom Johnson had suddenly passed away from a heart attack. She was the first to go that the small girl I was would remember. My parents and uncle lived close by grandfather, Pop Johnson. Aunt Bess, the other daughter, lived in Michigan. Hastily, they drove to Ohio. It was evening when they arrived. My cousin, Tink, was along with them. Two years older than my nine years, we were the youngest grandchildren.

It was a late night when they hastily sent the two of us to sleep on the guest bed while the children came to grips with the passing of their mother. I was scared. My cousin put his arms around me, comforting his little cousin until she rested.

Many years later, my Uncle, his grandfather would pass. We sat together once more in the funeral home. On the way to the cemetery, he handed me his handkerchief. Again, he understood, he remembered. We were the youngest of the grandchildren, and no one talked to us about death and our feelings. But we had one another.

Over the years, Tink and I would cross paths again. Each time that bond that started when we were small came to visit. He was one of the fondest memories of my childhood. Raised in a fishing lodge with a parent who was deaf, he was always fascinating and idolized by a younger cousin.

I learned a couple of weeks ago of Tink's illness. Little did I know that I would lose him so soon. His passing falls just a few days before that anniversary date of my father's death and that of our shared uncle. A silent bond is broken but the heart remembers. Once more I morn a loss, and his past comfort and love give me peace.

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