The following letter was written by Inez's youngest son Dave shortly after her death.
It was read at her funeral by the presiding Rev. Doug Voyles.
years ago on the eighteenth birthday of one of my children, I took the
opportunity to write him a letter to formally commemorate his entry into
adulthood. Among the thoughts were the following: "We have often struggled
through our roles as father and son, teacher and pupil. Now, as the years
pass, we can begin to develop the additional relationships of peers and
friends." I am very familiar with this evolution of family roles because
I learned it from the woman we are here to honor today. She taught me
that throughout life, a parent never ceases being parental, never stops
worrying, always wants to offer advice or lend a hand. But she also showed
me how to let go. How to switch from being Captain of a child's life,
to crew for a young adult. To underscore the point, I believe it is safe
to say that I have made enough errors in judgment in my couple of decades
at bat to satisfy a lesser masochist for life. Through it all, Mother
patiently (and with reasonable accuracy) predicted outcomes, offered objections,
and generally did the Mom thing. But, more importantly, she was always
there; always available to talk it through, go for a ride, share a cup
of coffee, maybe even bare her own soul a little. Not many "I told you
so's," just the ones I deserved. From the day I left home, she never stopped
her job as my parent, she just added the new dimension of friendship.
I only hope I do as well for my children. In closing, I can say with certainty
that if she could offer me advice today, it would be of the positive sort.
Chin up. Remember our times together. Search for what's good in the world.
Move on with life... Of course I will do these things. For me, however,
this world will always be a little lonelier place without my teacher,
my friend, my Mom.