Tuesday, October 27, 2015


Frank was a member of St. Andrew's in Northford. He died Saturday at CT Hospice in Branford, overlooking the Long Island Sound. He was 80.

When I first spoke to Cheryl, his only child, we talked mostly about being only children watching parents die, how lonely that is. Her mother died several years ago. I went through the same thing though my mother died 13 years or so before my father. It is an odd thing to be the only person who knows them the way you know them and watch them slip away. No one is there to share in the memories--they are only yours. That conversation was on a visit to Hospice when Frank was asleep the whole time--unable to be awakened. Two only children, we were, sharing one of the dark things about having no siblings.

After he died, I told  her I was supposed to be in Baltimore on Saturday, when the funeral was, but that I would come home early and let Bern ride the train home and she told me she didn't want me to do that. She said visiting Frank, as I did at Yale New Haven Hospital and Hospice was more important. Plus Ted, a priest Frank knew much longer than he knew me, was doing the funeral and could do the whole service perfectly well.

Today I met with Cheryl and her cousin, Clair, who is shepherding Cheryl through all this, I offered once more to come home early. She didn't know why I was to be in Baltimore and when I told her I would be visiting my grand-daughters for the first time since Easter, she did some very expressive movements and said, "My father would never forgive me if I asked you to shorten your time with your granddaughters. My father was all about family...."

Frank spent his life working against prostitution and human trafficking. Way ahead of his time. His daughter told me people thought he was crazy, worrying about such things. But Frank told me he'd gotten over 200 women off the street who stayed off the street and built new lives. Few people I know can say they saved that many people!

He was a remarkable man. I would have left Baltimore early--at 6 a.m. to get to the noon service--for Frank. But I wouldn't want him never to forgive his daughter for making me....

And Ted will do a wonderful job.

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About Me

some ponderings by an aging white man who is an Episcopal priest in Connecticut. Now retired but still working and still wondering what it all means...all of it.