” A eugoogolizer. One who speaks at funerals.” – Derek Zoolander, Zoolander
My final assignment for my mentoring placement at the hospice is to write a eulogy of someone I knew, as if I had been able to do the funeral.
I’ve chosen to write one for my grandfather because we were very close.
Willie Louis Robb was born on a farm, the son of parents who struggled just to make ends meet. He head to drop out of school after the eighth grade, but what little schooling he’d had was his second most valued treasure – the first being his Christian upbringing and relationship to God. He valued hard work and education, and loved getting up early to eat breakfast and read his Bible- he did this every day.
When I was growing up I loved going to Pappaw’s house. My sister, cousins and I would play in the attic, and find countless treasures that kept us entertained for hours. We would also play softball in the front yard, play “the running of the bulls” with the goats he bred for auction, and heckle the cows in the pasture.
Pappaw kept the pasture, barn and his workshop clean and neat, as well as the inside of the house. He was one of those “everything has a place and everything must be in place” kinds of people. He kept a strict schedule, but always had time to pencil in adventures: as long as they didn’t interfere with Sunday Morning/Evening or Wednesday night church.
Pappaw loved history, especially war history. He’d served in the army as a cook. He was proud to be American, to have worked for all he had, and of his ability to scramble eggs with one hand.
Going to church and giving to the local church were of utmost importance. I liked going to church with Pappaw because, although he couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket to save his life, he was always one of the loudest singers in there, and even louder on his favorite songs.
Pappaw always tried to do the right thing, was always trying to expand his knowledge base, and loved adventures, yard sales and card games.
One of the most important things I learned from him was the value of serving others. He would visit nursing homes regularly to play cards with residents who didn’t get a lot of visitors, and he would do handiwork for people that needed help and could benefit from his welding abilities or his epic lawn mower.
Pappaw was proud of his children and grandchildren, and tried to show them in the best ways he knew: remembering birthdays (every birthday was put into the calendar at the beginning of every year), and spending quality time with them.
Pappaw leaves behind a legacy of finding humor in the everyday hum of life, working hard for what you want, committing your life to Christ and selfless service.
This celebration of Pappaw’s life is a time for us to remember the kind of man he was and the good times we had together, and to reflect on the ways in which we can continue Pappaw’s legacy of service to God and people.