My Aunt Ethel would have been 102 years old in April. She passed away a few days ago, the last of the oldest generation on my mother's side of the family. Aunt Ethel had been married to my mother's brother, Morris, or as we affectionately called him, Uncle Mossie.
My mother and all her siblings have been long gone but Aunt Ethel remained, an avid tennis, golf and bridge player, active in and savvy about politics, energized by her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren who all adored her, a vibrant individual who played basketball in high school, climbed the Great Wall of China when it was opened for American travel and snorkeled the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.
I have great memories of the wonderful times we spent at her house which was always filled with wonderful food, games in the back yard, Passover seders, and so many 4th of July parties to celebrate Uncle Mossie's Independence Day birthday.
Her passing now makes my cousins and me part of the family's oldest generation. It's a sobering thought but Aunt Ethel's example of a life well lived should provide inspiration to do the same.
Aunt Ethel, you will be sorely missed but the loving memories will sustain us.