We gathered over the weekend to say goodbye to my father-in-law. It was a weekend filled with tears and laughter. My sister-in-law, Margie gave a touching tribute to her father, her husband, Roger gave a beautiful eulogy. Each were filled with laughter and tears, remembering the stories which make up the life of a family. The older grandchildren who live close served as pall bearers. One of the most poignant moments was when our nephew, Greg, who is in the Marine reserve accepted the flag from the color guard and then presented it to his Tita.
After the services, we went back to the house the 5 children grew up in to celebrate their father's life. We ate food he would have loved, tamales, carnitas, beans and rice. We gathered in Rick's lounge and shared stories of the man we all loved. We laughed, we cried.
At the end of the day, some of us gathered on Tita's bed to say good night. This house is so filled with the memories of this family, this wonderful, wacky, loving family who extends their arms to not only those of us who married into the family, but many others, many friends who will miss John. We will miss him, but his legacy lives in the kind, loving wife he left behind and their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. I know he is proud and would want us to laugh more than cry.