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Sunday, January 15, 2006

R.I.P. Dorothy Kelley 

My trip to Peru turned into a trip to Florida to see my grandmother who was very sick. The trip to Florida turned into a trip to my grandmother's visitation and funeral who died on Friday morning while I was in the car travelling to see her. The family that was with her at the end say it's best that I remember her from when I saw her at Thanksgiving, because that was the last time she really felt herself. I suppose sometimes being late can be a blessing.

We called my grandmother Grannydot. She was an amazing woman. Her skills in the kitchen were unmatched - the best damn fried okra, white peas, and collard greens you've ever put in your mouth, and that's just mentioning a few favorites. She was a woman capable of a depth of empathy I try to emulate, but I think only comes with age and wisdom.

She and her husband, my grandfather Emory who survives her, were the children of sharecroppers in Alabama. My mother's childhood was spent with the two owning their own grocery store in the small town of Chipley in the panhandle of Florida, just south of their native Alabama. They had come a long way. Grannydot was known as the perfect homemaker. Friends at her funeral recounted tales of her skills as a mother and wife. She dealt with hardship in her life, but she dealt with it demonstrating a strength that uplifted those around her. She showed that strength of character until the end.

She will be missed by all. Rest in peace, Grannydot. I love you.

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