Tuesday, November 12, 2013

From a Neff Road daughter

Today I'm taking this space to tell about a friend of mine who recently passed away. He was more than a friend. He was indeed one of my fathers on Neff Road. Victor Lavy left us on November 10th. He left not only his family but many friends as well. This is for you, Victor.

Probably two things that stand out for me when I think of Victor were his bib overalls and his laughter. His laugh was the same as that of the daughter he lost. Marilyn died while on a mission with her husband. It was a loss that affected us all on Neff Road. When visiting Victor and Doris, we would often talk of Marilyn. The hurt never left but the joy remained. I learned about strength in that home at the end of our lane.

As a child, I often played with Merrill and Don at their house or the boys came to ours. With our older siblings and the Stager kids, we play baseball in the meadow while Victor and Doris watched from the front porch and the sheep dodged the balls. We could hear Victor and Doris laugh and cheer us on. Every time I saw them we laughed that when teams were chosen by the two self appointed coaches, I was always standing alone at the end with each team captain trying to pawn me off on the other team. This is how memories are made and cherished.

Seeing it backward from my 66 years allows me to understand how much Victor and Doris loved me. They always watched over the Loxley girls even when we came home with our families in later years. When I lost each of my parents, Victor wrapped his arms around me and allowing my tears fall. I knew that every time I went to visit him, Victor would open the door smiling and with a ready hug. I was loved.

Things change and those who lived on Neff Road migrated to the Brethren Home. On each trip back, I was excited to visit each old neighbor. Victor would hold my hand and tell me how much he loved his bride. We talked of the old times and caught up on the activities of his children. After a chat, we held hands and went to visit Doris. Once I  knocked on the door of Doris's room. Victor opened the door a bit and Doris popped around the corner and planted a big kiss on me. A couple who loved one another for 72 years. They loved me as their own. Memories that I hold dear.

Victor Lavy lived a long life of 93 years. They were years of struggle and pain, but the faith of this family held them up and gave them laughter and joy in life. I know that next spring I will think of Victor when it is time to hunt mushrooms. I know that on every trip back I will shed a few tears for the missing of a warm hug. I embrace the friendships that I have with his son Lowell and daughter Geneva. I still have the love of the Lavy's in my life.

Rest in peace, my dear Victor. This from a 'daughter' of Neff Road.

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