“Rather than mourn the flame, let us celebrate how brightly it burned”
November 19, 1912-March 17, 20009
Beloved mother and sister
Treasured aunt and friend
Jewell Mefford (1912 – 2009)
Another weekend in Vegas. Neither Mom nor Judy can go, so I will. I was very fond of my Aunt Jewell, who graciously always let me spend the night on my many commutes from Porterville to Provo. She would always plan to go ut to dinner at one of the fancy casinos, so we would drive all over town for the best dinners, the best dessert nights or the best breakfasts. She was quite a shopper and knew where ALL the best sales were—and if it didn;t fit quite right (which would be perfectly), she knew how to alter it to fit. She used to go to thrift shops and buy men’s suits and cut them down to fit her sons, for church. She worked for many years in a hospital and would gladly take cast off finery from doctor’s wives and remake them for her and her girls. They were always so stylishly dressed and perfectly coiffed. Still are.
My grandmother Virgie named all of her daughters after precious stones-Jewell, Opal and Ruby because she was not laying treasures up on Earth, but laying them up within her family, which was in her mind, the only enduring task she had been entrusted with.
I’m not wearing black. I found a beautiful tencel dress with a jacket that is the color of Welch’s grape juice. I’m wearing my big fancy red hat, because I am not regretting one minute of her life. We will be singing (we do that Lennon Sisters close harmony) her favorite hymns. There will be a viewing, a service and then a private family service at the graveside.
And food. Lots of food. Nothing makes you hungrier than missing someone with all your heart.
I told my mother I was going. You know what she said? “Stand by Shirley. She sings loud enough even you can stay on key.”
My poor mother! She had a beautiful voice, just like Dolly Parton and all of Jewell’s children can sing. I can follow if I stand by Shirley.