Losing a Friend

By: David Hosea
By: David Hosea

On September 29th, our good friend Elonese McClave passed away, at the age of 85. Elonese not only worshiped with us and was our neighbor, she was like a grandmother. Elonese was so sweet to our family. She and her daughter, Robbie, always opened their homes to us.

Elonese had not been in good health recently, but her death came as a surprise. After Wednesday night’s church service, our family went to visitation. Polly and I talked to Isaac to prepare him for this dramatic event. Isaac has a wild imagination and relates real life to the stories we tell him. All the way to the funeral home, Isaac had "I know’s."

"I know...why don’t we get a gingerbread man to give Elonese a kiss, and bring her back to life."

"I know...why don’t we give her a bite of an apple to make her come back to life."

"Now, Isaac," I said, "don’t be telling stories when we go into the funeral home. It might hurt Miss Robbie’s feelings. Robbie loves her mother very much and is going to miss her. Tell her you love her and are sorry about Miss Elonese."

I told Isaac when we were going into the funeral home, to hold my thumb (he says when we hold hands, I squeeze too hard). I reminded Isaac, "No stories."

When we walked in, our family went up to see Elonese one last time. Isaac wanted to see, so I picked him up, and held him close.

Isaac and I sat down, waiting for Polly (and Jonas), while she talked to Robbie. Isaac looked around the room and said, "This is sad, what’s wrong with people? They should be crying."

I asked if he told Robbie he loved her and gave her a kiss yet. He said "no" and with "Princess Elonese" on his mind, he attempted to run up to the casket, kiss her, waking her from her sleep. He moved fast, weaving in between friends and family, he almost made it, before I grabbed him and decided it was time to walk out in the foyer.

Isaac has remembered Robbie in his prayers. He is only four years old and I know it’s difficult to fully understand. I was proud of him. He’s very sweet and is compassionate toward others. Polly told Robbie about his fairy tale solutions to wipe the sadness away. Robbie thought they were cute and sweet.

Robbie is a good friend and faithful reader of this blog. She gave me her blessing to share this story with you.

This Halloween will not be the same for Isaac. Elonese always had extra goodies, like pickles (his favorite) for him.

I feel privileged that Elonese was a part of our lives the last eleven years. She was a great woman and we loved her very much.

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