Here are some latest extracts from my favourite obituary pages, in the Times Colonist, Canada.
What I admire about the best of these is their lapidary nature, their restraint, their decorum. Above all, I admire the careful thought that has gone into epitomising the person who has died. In just a few words a person’s nature is made palpable. You feel you know them.
Charlie, who enjoyed skiing until he was 65 yrs of age, was quick to laugh and was quite a prankster in his youth. He was always first to fill his plate at family gatherings and constantly tell tall tales of the hardships of growing up on the farm.
He had a keen sense of justice & fair play. His analytical mind made him reasoned & articulate in conversation or debate & he always remained open-minded & congenial.
He was never one to seek recognition for himself or take credit. Dad was a gentle & thoughtful man, reserved in any judgment of others & honourable in all facets of his life.
Dad was a survivor; a man of few words with incredible wisdom, strength & courage. He took solace in maintaining his independence & sharp mind, exercising practicality & never seeking entitlement.
Lastly, this, which speaks so tellingly of the feelings of the bereaved:
PARKER, Eileen Elizabeth (Ward) March 31, 1930 – May 12, 2010 Kind, loving, caring – good and decent to the core of her being – Eileen was taken, inexplicably, unfathomably and unmercifully, by pancreatic cancer on Wednesday, May 12, 10 days from diagnosis to death, only weeks from apparent health to her last breath.