Daddy was buried at the Southern Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery, about 45 minutes south of Milwaukee in Union Grove. The burial included military rites, complete with the folding of the flag that had draped his coffin, a three gun salute, and the trumpetsong of “Taps.” The latter completely blew my mind. I’ve heard the song on television and in film, but to hear it live—and for my father—choked me up. It was the final send off, a perfect coda for a life well-lived. Sure Daddy deserved such an honor as a veteran of the Second World War. But he deserved it even more for the great example he set as a civilian.
To know him was to love him.
Yesterday was probably the worst day emotionally for me. When preparing for the funeral and all that it entails, it’s hard to take a moment to embrace the gravity of the loss. The day after, however, I could hardly get out of bed. I felt like a kindergartener, whining the words, “I just want my Daddy,” most of the afternoon and evening till my husband departed for Maine.
Today, a teenager, I’m slowly coming back into myself.