The day of the Funeral
What does one do but wait we know where we are supposed to be and at what time – just wait it feels like it is going to be a long day.
I decide that the time for me to read Margaret’s letter is now just before we go up to the chapel of rest. I read it in the conservatory it is very moving especially as I am reading it now four years after she wrote it on the day of her funeral. She was a real words smith in getting things so right and very particular in how she wanted to convey her last thoughts with us all.
Steven and family arrive we all go up to chapel of rest along with a few mementos to place in the coffin – drawings from the older grandchildren, a photo of Anne and Margaret along with her poem a picture of me and so on.
To say she looked so beautiful and calm would not be doing her justice her smile was there and I remarked to Anne later that I thought it was more a laugh – “any more stuff in the coffin and you are going drop me” – just the sort of thing Anne and Margaret’s sense of humour would have been like during their friendship.
A quick lunch before the hearse etc arrives.
I decided if we were able for me and the boys to carry Margaret into the church.
Cars arrive and we get ourselves sorted over the three cars and make our way to the church. There were many there already – speak with my family from down south – and prepare for any final things to do – words in my pocket decide to do it on my own and get mic fitted and where it will come in the service.
The church and flowers were perfect.
Final instructions of how we will lift coffin up and walk to the front – a moment that the four of us will cherish for ever to hoist Margaret on our shoulders and carry her forward with such grace befitting of someone so precious to us.
Hymns from Mission Praise
MP 50 Be Still in the presence of the Lord
MP 825 Faithful one
MP 445 Lord the light of your love
MP 456 Make me a channel of your peace
Sung at the crematorium
MP 921 Purify my heart
MP 880 Lord I come to you
Audio of service
It is pouring with rain as we leave the church for the crematorium. No time to linger which was a shame as there were many of my friends from my time at the BBC came to support me. (Decide to get in touch later)
Arrive at crematorium to be created by Graham to tell me that there is no organist /no music for two well known hymns. Quick thinking speak with the Sandyhills Choristers (Our Church choir members) to see how best to do this agree them to kick us of – on we go as planned. It turned out perfect well done to them.
So it finally came much feeling that is hard to put into words that my love for the past forty-eight years was in the hands of our Lord for safe keeping forever.
We left the service with Barbara Streisand singing “Memories”
I am not one for a post crematorium reception but you do manage to get through it as best you can.
Off to the Redstones for a reception with many of our friends and family. It was great to see so many you always feel it is a shame that we do not meet more often but busy we are all with our own families does not make this possible. Photographs exchanged showing Margaret in her early years added to the occasion.
Thanks to everyone.
This was a day when memories were to the fore but Margaret lives on through our (always will call them our boys) boys.
I cannot thank Steven, Philip and Matthew for getting me through this last week, our moment in church as we lifted your MUM just felt so right.