My Dearest Gloria,
You left so quickly that I did not have a chance to say “Goodbye!” or “Thank you!” for all the happiness that you gave to me, like our two wonderful sons. Therefore, I will try to put into words what my kisses would have conveyed.
We had a good life together through many ups and down. I doubt it would have lasted so long except for you (you were definitely stubborn). Our forty-six years and ten days together were filled with so many marvelous memories, yet that time still seems much too short. We had numerous things planned to do in the coming years. Nevertheless, you taught me many things and I truly appreciate the patience you showed until I learned them. I am a better and wiser man than when we first met. Now, you will teach me how to live without you. It not an easy lesson, even with the help and love of Darren, Jason and all our other family members and friends. Although you did not go to college or become a nurse (as you dreamed early in life), you always knew more about the needs of people and cared deeply for all groups that could not give voice to their own rights and needs. You “nursed” a multitude of people and causes outside your family and friends. You always spoke out for truth and the rights of people, and all living things. Politics was one of your passions since you served as a precinct judge when our sons were in grade school.
We had discussed on many occasions our plans in case of death. With the help of our sons, I have begun to fulfill your ardent desire for a memorial service with no religious connections. While that is only natural for an atheist, it will be a first in our family. Then one day, I will follow your example. Some of your favorite music will be played. There will be tributes to you and your life, which you lived/loved so well despite your many health problems. In lieu of flowers, you asked that donations be made to organizations such as: Sierra Club, NRDC, NWF, GREENPEACE, or other groups who help to protect the wild world.
I am so thankful that we were able to return to Colorado and the Wilderness Trails Ranch our last two summers. You fell in love with it on our first visit over thirty years ago, and I did as well. We will scatter your ashes and Maggie’s together at Vista Grande. Mine will follow later. LAMK!