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Gene Corbin sings ‘Amazing Grace’ at Bert Norgorden’s memorial gathering


Gail Rubin is now on Day 19 of her 30 funerals in 30 days. Over on her The Family Plot blog she is delighting her many fans with a full account of each as it happens. The appeal of what she is doing is broad. She is compiling an important social document, an account of funerary practice in our time in the context of US cultural traditions. More compellingly, in our opinion, she is celebrating the lives of ordinary people. 

Yesterday she attended a memorial event which we want you to know about. It was for Bert Nordgren. Here are some extracts from her report: 

Though Bert Norgorden’s only living relative is his sister, a family of friends in Albuquerque gathered at the Elena Gallegos Open Space area for a memorial gathering and potluck lunch. 

Herbert “Bert” Norgorden was remembered for many things: his love of herbs and teaching about their healing powers; an accomplished self-taught flutist; a talented photographer of plants, flowers and nature; a great cook and teacher; and a warm, wonderful man.

The celebration started with musician and singer Gene Corbin providing a powerful a cappella version of “Amazing Grace.” Bert and Gene had made lots of music together over the years. 

About 35 people were in attendance. Toward the end, all raised their glasses of liquid – whether goats milk (a favorite of Bert’s), lemonade, iced tea or champagne. Marcia Landau said, “To Bert and to all of us. Thank you for coming out today. He lives on in our hearts.” Everyone then enjoyed the food brought for the potluck lunch.

Find Gail’s blog here and catch Day 19 as well. 

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