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Dear Bern :

Now I’m the oldest, if only by six minutes.  The oldest none the less.  You’ve taught me so much about being the eldest.  Always keeping in touch with everyone.  Always being available to talk and help.  Always give, never expecting to get back.  Always keep order and everyone in place.  You were our pipeline, our source, our constant.  Now we’ll have to find things out for ourselves or just miss out.  Your glory hallelujah!!! Macaroni and cheese will be missed along with your corn bread stuffing and anti-pasta salad.  I’m not going to take up time since Tara and Tina have done such a wonderful tribute, but I just wanted to take out the time to say that I love you and I miss you.  I will never forget you.  I’m sorry you had to go and it’s hard to accept and believe.  We hurt so bad.  But I’m glad you’re free.  Live better, laugh better, breathe better, feel better, see better.  Rest on my sweet sister.  You will always be in our hearts.

Good Night


Dear Bern , My sister, My friend,

Though I knew this day would come, I never dreamt that it would be this soon, and certainly not this way.

I still feel as though I’m trapped in a horrific nightmare that I can’t wake myself out of.

Bern , you were the oldest of the girls, and you upheld that title to the letter.  Anyone of your sisters, nieces, nephews, children, children’s friends, strangers, could come to and talk to you, call you at any given day or time and you would always be there to lend an ear.

I always marveled at your positive attitude in reference to your disabilities.  You would say “this is who I am, this the body God gave me, and I accept it”.  I don’t know how many people could be as brave and strong as you to have the handicaps that you had and continue through life without bitterness.  You always had such a beautiful smile, and a terrific laugh that shall continue to ring in my ears forever.

Bern , of the girls you and I were the sensitive ones, or as some called us, the “cry babies”.  If I ever needed someone to cry with, I would call you.  You and I would cry so bad, we could not longer speak and would just hang up the phone.

Bern , we would talk on the phone everyday.  If you didn’t hear from me by seven o’clock you would call me and say, “You can’t give a sister a call?”.  Now I must learn to go on without you.  I don’t know how to do that.  You were the glue that held us all together.

You opened up your doors and home to everyone.  When I first moved to this state with my four babies, I asked you if I could stay with you.  You told me that there was no where for us to stay, that there were only two bedrooms, yours, and the one your children both shared.  Pausing for a moment, you replied that you still had a living room.  For the next four months that living room was our home.

You were the missionary among missionaries.  You housed the homeless, not just me, but many others.  You fed people, clothed people, gave money to people, co-signed for people, visited people when you were able to, sent letters and cards, and communicated via internet and phone to check on friends and family near and far.

You were your father’s pride, your mother’s joy, your children’s heart, and your sister’s rock.

Though your body be gone, you will always live in my heart.

I Love You and I Miss You

Your sister


A message for Beeb from your personal Informant.

Aunt BB you died today
The reasoning unknown
Only one person really knows
This life you have outgrown

Heavy hearted yes
But devastated, oh not I
Now you have your skinny legs
To walk, to run, or fly

We wept for you Miss BB
As our home went up in flames
What really could we say or do?
Who really could we blame?

I know you're really happy now
As healthy as can be
Still working on your Harlem shake
Perfecting QVC

Thank your for being our central dispatcher
Connecting all the lines
Of course we could always reach you
No matter what the time

Bed-ridden what an awful thing
You accepted it as a job
You were the loyalist employee there
Didn't lie, cheat , or rob

Oh my gosh Miss Beeb
I can't believe you're gone
All the stomach-aching laughs
All the silly little songs

She'll be a star you said
As you covered my stomach
With glittered powder

As the thought came to your head
We'll name her Kyla
For this hour

Your "baby girl" will miss you
On babysitting Mondays
I promise to tell her all about you
And all your special ways

Left-overs on your tray
Were truly appetizing
Not mention all the info.
On sales and discount pricing

Rest on my peaceful angel
Your work is truly done
Take time for you, no worries now
Your battle has been won

Sleep tight God's child
You left your family strong
Yes we'll weep, Oh yes we'll weep
But we won't weep for long

Tell 'em to stop crying
Tell 'em that you're free
Tell 'em that's not what you want
Or what you wanna see

Tell them how much weight you lost
Oxygen no more
How you walked by yourself
Through the aisles of the store

Did you see the shrine we made?
It's still standing strong
We would 've done much more you see
But it was taking long

Thank you for the memories you left
Thank you for your part
Most of all we thank you
For the realness of your heart

You know this family BeeB
You know we'll be alright
It's just so hard to know
That your face won't be in sight

Guess that's all I have to say
I informed you well in full
Plus you know how I can get
Talk 'til no one else has room

Make the angels macaronie and cheese
They'll love it just like me
Or give them the lemon jolly ranchers
You never wanted to see

This conculdes our talk
Cause I know you have to go
Your flight has landed in glory
And you're excited yes I know

So let me hurry up
And finally take my seat
I miss you and I love you
You'll always be with me

Yours truly,

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