I’ll never forget the last time I saw my great granddaddy. Our whole family had gathered to celebrate is 100th birthday, and I remember sitting with him the majority of the party. Grandaddy and his wife, MiMi Anne, lived in my family’s neighborhood growing up, so I was always very close with him and my great grandmother. He held my hand so tightly and asked where I was in school, 7 or 8 times, and I always smiled and answered his questions each time. Finally after awhile, he looked down at my hand, and saw that I was wearing some of MiMi Anne’s jewelry that she had willed to me. He squeezed my hand a little tighter and looked up at me with tear filled eyes and said “You still wear them!” I swallowed the knot in my throat, because I knew how much he missed her, and replied “Every Day.” With a weak Smile. He squeezed my hand again and patted my arm, and I stayed with him until well after the presents had been opened and the party was over. Grandaddy passed away later that year.

I refuse to let this keep happening to grand children everywhere, because everyone deserves the chance to say goodbye, and to make memories with their loved ones.