Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Funeral

Well, interesting.

Got to the funeral home.  An all inclusive funeral at that place.  No funeral procession and the wake the same day as the service.  Walked in, got into the room where George was laying in a coffin and sat down.  Just looked around, looked up front at George and pondered.

After a little while, they started a video showing on a drop-down screen of a very large series of photographs of George from birth until recently.  In fact, the most recent photo was of him and his wife at the company party in December.

There was a pretty crowd there considering it was the viewing and the actual service wasn't going to start for another 2 hours.

I took a walk up to the front and took a look at George.  His body had decayed considerably.  I found that interesting because at other viewings I had never seen any decay.  Bodies are filled with the fluid and kept refrigerated as far as I know.  One side of his face was quite puffy looking and there was damage visible.  They had a cap on his head - though for George that certainly wasn't unusual, I am guessing it would have been hard to cover up the "blunt force trauma" that killed him if they hadn't had that on there.   His fingers were - not really fingers anymore from the decay.

I don't really know how morticians can work with bodies like that day in and day out, that is not something I think I would take much pleasure in - at all.  Not to mention having to oversee the services and seeing this kind of thing on a very frequent basis.

Anyway, I got out of there after viewing the entire collection of photos and partway into it a second time and started getting into conversations in the hallway with his family members, only a few of which I know.  I also happened upon George's best friend and not just self-described as such, either, pretty much everyone that knew George said yes, that was his best friend.

The service started and his mother was just losing it.  Of course, that's to be expected.  A pastor got up and used the service as an opportunity to preach the Gospel and I was listening to his mom making comments, turns out she is a very strong Christian woman.

At least half of the crowd ended up over at one of the step-son's house and there was food and tables set up in the back yard.  It was and is quite cool out there.  Cold, actually, at least by my standards.  Which probably isn't saying much compared to those that are currently in the aftermath of that huge blizzard.  I sat down at the best friend's table - they were sitting alone and then a crowd of managers joined the table I was sitting at and we had some interesting discussions.

I hugged the mother on the way out- she broke down in tears as I told her it was very cool that she is a strong, Christian woman.  She gave me a look of surprise.  Yes, I could tell from the way you were talking that you love the Lord, is what I told her.  She went into a very long story of how she absolutely loves the Lord but hates the church, which she considers man-made and not very nice words about it.

I felt compelled to tell her that yes, many churches are built upon man, but there are plenty out there that aren't.  But I didn't push it, no point in it.  I simply told her that we had been praying for her and the rest of the family and that we would continue to do so.  They are going to have a second service in New York, which is where George is from and apparently had many friends back there as well.

That's pretty much it.  5 hours worth and that was enough for me.  Most of the people had cleared out by the time I left the gathering anyway.  Our company's GM told me it did happen on I-40, contrary to some rumors that have been floating around, and that he had, indeed, rolled the pickup into a semi that was already rolled over in the Interstate's center median.  George had hit black ice and that was also what had caused the 2 trucks to crash.  The police report has not been released and won't be until 21 days, so we still won't know exactly what happened out there, but now I have a clear picture of it, anyway.

Home now.  I didn't much figure I would get anything done today with this funeral and the amount of time it would end up taking considering a visitation; service and then a party at a different location afterwards.  But I was glad I went.  I saw some sides to people there that they haven't shown before - mostly referring to management.  George and the ops manager used to hang out together here and there and apparently took trips to different places together.  Well I assume their wives would have been there with them. The GM had nothing but glowing remarks about George the entire time.

It's already past 6:00 pm, so I don't suspect I will do anything today, have church in the morning and dunno about the rest of Sunday.


Interesting day. Up early - 4:00, jolted out of deep sleep by the ridiculous phone alarm - annoying as all get out but that's the inten...