September 17, 2014

"Love story worthy of a Hollywood script" "

'I can't live without him': Last words of wife, 97, who 'died of a broken heart' just hours after her husband of 76 years passed away

It is a love story worthy of a Hollywood script.  A devoted couple who were inseparable for more than seven decades of marriage have died within hours of each other – on their 76th wedding anniversary.

War hero Clifford Hartland passed away on July 29 at the age of 101 and his 97-year-old wife Marjorie followed him 14 hours later.

 Clifford+Marjorie Hartland
Their daughter Christine said her mother had 'died of a broken heart'.  A frail Clifford passed away at Saint Martin's Rest Home in Coventry hours after his wife was discharged from hospital with a broken leg.  'We think he was waiting for her to come back to the room they shared before he died,' said Christine.

'Afterwards, Mum just kept saying, 'I can't live without him'. That night, Mum rang me.  'She was upset and I told her to think about all the happy times they'd shared in their marriage while she drifted off to sleep.  'She died at 1am, and I like to think that's exactly what she was doing.

'It's a perfect love story. I'm devastated they're gone but so happy for them - they've never really had to live without one another.'
The couple fell met in Cardiff before the war and married soon after in 1938.

But their love story was soon dealt a blow when Clifford, a gunner in the 7th Coast Regiment Royal Artillery, was sent to Singapore on October 1, 1941. When his regiment surrendered to the Japanese in 1942, Clifford was one of four survivors and he was forced to work as a prisoner of war on the infamous Thailand-Burma railway line.  Conditions were brutal, and 13,000 prisoners died and were buried along the route.

An 11-stone young man when he left Liverpool Dock, Clifford weighed a pitiful five stone when he returned.  Clifford and Marjorie's daughter Christine, 67, said: 'I don't know how Dad survived - mainly luck and determination, I think. There were 700 men in his regiment when they went out, but only four ever came back. Dad was the last to die from his regiment.

'But every day, on her way to work, Mum would go into the church she passed and pray that Dad would come home. She lived without him for four years, but she never believed he was dead.'  Clifford had been mercilessly tortured, starved, and worked to the brink of death by the Japanese.  He was forced to trek for miles each day through leech-filled swamps.
Mother-of-two Christine said her father had once been caught smoking banana leaves in one of the 15 prison camps he had been sent to.  The Japanese officer who discovered him pushed a poisoned bamboo shoot through his leg, leaving a lifelong scar.
Last year, Clifford said: 'The worst thing was when we had to dig our own graves. We were due to be shot on the day the war ended.

'Then the 'all-clear' sounded. You can guess how I felt.' Clifford came home to a street party in Cardiff, and even a letter of thanks from the King. But his wife's welcome was the most treasured of all.

The war hero was discharged from the army in 1945, and Christine - the couple's only child - was born a year later.
The family moved to Hipswell Highway in Wyken, Coventry in 1947, and Clifford worked for Morris Engines as a factory foreman until he retired. Christine said: 'Dad was in hospital for a while after he came back from Burma, but neither of them cared. They were just so happy to be together again.

'They had an incredible marriage. They never, ever argued. Dad idolised Mum and she adored him.
'When they'd go to a restaurant, Dad would eat the same thing that Mum ordered.
'They loved dancing together, and they loved singing, too. Dad had been a choirboy at Gloucester Cathedral.'
Posted by Jill Fallon at 2:41 PM | Permalink
Categories: Great Legacies | Categories: Last Words, Obits, Eulogies and Epitaphs

King Richard III hacked to death in War of Roses, Game of Thrones

The remains of King Richard III, lost  for over 500 years until 2012 when archeologists using  ground-penetrating radar found them under a car park in the central English city of Leicester have now undergone forensic examination.

The University of Leicester, relying on mitochondrial DNA evidence, soil analysis, dental tests and the physical characteristics of the skeleton, confirmed 'beyond a reasonable doubt' that the remains were those of King Richard III.

From Wikipedia Richard III (2 October 1452 – 22 August 1485) was King of England for two years, from 1483 until his death in 1485 in the Battle of Bosworth Field.  He was the last king of the House of York and the last of the Plantagenet dynasty. His defeat at Bosworth Field, the last decisive battle of the Wars of the Roses, symbolizes the end of the Middle Ages in England. He is the subject of the play Richard III by William Shakespeare.
After his death, Richard's image was tarnished by propaganda fostered by his Tudor successors (who sought to legitimize their claim to the throne),culminating in the famous portrayal of him in Shakespeare's play Richard III as a physically deformed machiavellian villain, albeit courageous and witty, cheerfully committing numerous murders in order to claw his way to power. 

The phrases "The winter of our discontent" and "My kingdom for a horse" both come from Shakespeare's play. 

Richard III's brutal last moments revealed: Forensics show how doomed king was hacked to death by 11 blows after losing his helmet (and his horse) in the Battle of Bosworth

Richard III was surrounded by soldiers and hacked to death after losing his helmet in battle, analysis of his remains suggests.

Medical scanners were used to establish that the king suffered 11 injuries from enemy soldiers at Bosworth Field in 1485.  The 32-year-old died after two blows to the back of his head – one from a sword and the other from a halberd, a medieval axe-like weapon.

 King Richard Iii Forensics

As nine of the injuries were to his skull, researchers at Leicester University suggest he had lost his heavy helmet.
The two other injuries may have been inflicted after his armour was torn from his body.  Wounds to his buttocks probably came as his bloodied corpse was paraded around the battle ground, they suggest.

The medical evidence establishes the most detailed account of Richard III’s death ever attempted and is published today in the Lancet medical journal.

His successor was Henry VII, the first Tudor king who won his throne by defeating King Richard III with the support of a small force of French and Scottish that increased his forces to about 5000.  His victory effectively ended the War of the Roses between the Houses of Lancaster and York.  Henry's marriage to Elizabeth of York united the warring houses and his symbol became the Tudor rose.

Tudor Rose The Tudor Rose is a combination of the Red Rose of Lancaster and the White Rose of York.

The widely popular Game of Thrones is based loosely on the Wars of the Roses

The war between the Starks and the Lannisters also bears stark similarities to the Wars of the Roses between the English houses of Lancaster and York between 1455 and 1487.

Like the Starks, the House of York were northerners, like the Lannisters the House of Lancaster were southerners and extremely wealthy.

 Stannis Baratheon Stannis, brother of Robert Baratheon, was unfaltering in his loyalty to the King while he was alive, but after Robert's death, declared his own nephews illegitimate and tried to seize the throne for himself using some fairly controversial tactics.

Richard III, brother of King Edward IV, was also loyal up until the point of the King's death, upon which he declared his own nephews illegitimate, and succeeded to the throne after their 'disappearance'.

The counterpart to Henry Tudor?  Daenerys Targaryen. 
 Daenerys Targaryen-1

Henry Tudor, later Henry VII, took the throne from Richard III after crossing the channel with a foreign army in tow, marching through his birthplace and recruiting more troops along the way.
For many years before that, however, he lived a life of exile in France while chaos slowly spread in England, waiting for the perfect moment to seize his opportunity.

Not a little unlike Daenerys, who has been slowly amassing a huge army across the Narrow Sea (read: the English Channel) while plotting to invade her birthplace, rallying the loyal to her cause as she goes.

You can read lots more about the History Behind the Game of Thrones here with many contributions by noted historians

Posted by Jill Fallon at 12:44 PM | Permalink
Categories: Autopsies | Categories: Cemeteries and graves | Categories: Memory, Memorials

September 16, 2014

Killer found - Jack the Ripper identified through DNA

Jack the Ripper unmasked: How amateur sleuth used DNA breakthrough to identify Britain's most notorious criminal 126 years after string of terrible murders

 Suspects Jack The Ripper

 The Suspects Jack Ripper

DNA evidence has now  shown beyond reasonable doubt which one of six key suspects commonly cited in connection with the Ripper’s reign of terror was the actual killer …..

A shawl found by the body of Catherine Eddowes, one of the Ripper’s victims, has been analysed and found to contain DNA from her blood as well as DNA from the killer.

The landmark discovery was made after businessman Russell Edwards, 48, bought the shawl at auction and enlisted the help of Dr Jari Louhelainen, a world-renowned expert in analysing genetic evidence from historical crime scenes.  Using cutting-edge techniques, Dr Louhelainen was able to extract 126-year-old DNA from the material and compare it to DNA from descendants of Eddowes and the suspect, with both proving a perfect match.

The revelation puts an end to the fevered speculation over the Ripper’s identity which has lasted since his murderous rampage in the most impoverished and dangerous streets of London.
Jack the Ripper has been identified as Polish-born Aaron Kosminski who was a suspect when the Ripper murders took place in 1888
Hairdresser Kosminski lived in Whitechapel and was later put in an asylum
Posted by Jill Fallon at 11:18 PM | Permalink
Categories: Genealogy, DNA testing

Evicted from their own graves

Mummified corpses removed from crypts after relatives can no longer afford fees in Guatemala

Armed only with a sledgehammer and mask to cover his mouth and nose, a Guatemalan grave-cleaner begins the wretched task of smashing open a crypt and removing whatever rank remains lurk inside.

 Sledgehammer To Tombs

A human skull with thick hair still clinging to it is pulled from one of the dark tombs, a miniature baby coffin, adorned with a white flower, from another. 

 Baby Exhumation

The men are removing the dead whose families can no longer afford the luxury of a private crypt and as soon as a lease on a grave expires, the cleaners will come and free up the space for a new paying customer.

Any remains that are not claimed will be stuffed into plastic bags, labelled and sent to a mass grave to be reburied.
Most of the corpses excavated are largely decomposed, but those that were laid to rest in the upper crypts, where conditions are hot and dry, become mummified.

As the team of grave-cleaners go to work in Guatemala City, their manner hardly appears different to laborers on a building site or workers at a recycling centre.

Bags of broken corpses are tossed into heaps like piles of garbage and transported on forklift trucks with the clothes they were buried in still on their backs.
Posted by Jill Fallon at 8:13 PM | Permalink
Categories: Cemeteries and graves

Unclaimed in morgue, 13 veterans laid to rest with full honors

Joseph Bottum wrote "The fundamental pattern for any community is a congregation at a funeral" and  "A healthy society requires a lively sense of the reality and continuing presence of the dead."

If what he said is true, and I believe it is, the following story is a sign of the recovery of Detroit.  While it is truly sad to think of any veteran dying alone and unloved, t's a truly moving sight to learn how a community coalition sprang up to insure that these 13 veterans would have a proper burial.

They served their country but died alone: 13 military veterans who lay unclaimed in morgue for up to three years are finally laid to rest with full honors

The unclaimed bodies of 13 military veterans were finally laid to rest in side-by-side plots following a poignant 60-mile funeral procession yesterday. The dead soldiers, seven of whom served in Vietnam, were driven from a morgue in Detroit to Great Lakes National Cemetery in Holly Township, Michigan - their hearses flanked by state troopers on motorbikes.

 Thirteen Flag Draped Cask Detroit

All of the men died alone in the last three years, but tragically, their remains were left unclaimed at the Wayne County medical examiner's office. While some fought in Vietnam, others served as far back as the 1950s - with at least one going to fight in the Korean War.
The veterans were identified by the Missing in America Project, who 'locate and inter the unclaimed remains of American veterans through the joint efforts of private, state and federal organizations'. 

Sadly, they were among 200 unclaimed bodies from the same morgue, which have all now been buried - as the county could not bear the cost of holding on to them.
Of the 13 who were laid to rest with full military honors, only one - Vietnam-era veteran Roland Dukes - had a family member present who received a flag from the casket.  Shimeca Jackson, Mr Dukes' niece, said: 'We appreciate them honoring him. A lot of time has passed by. It was a beautiful ceremony.'
David Techner, funeral director of the Ira Kaufman Chapel in Southfield and a member of the coalition responsible for the burials, said having 'hundreds of bodies stacked up in the morgue' will never happen again.

He stated that the group have come up with 'Initiative 91', which calls for the coalition to step in and either bury or cremate a body that is not claimed within 90 days…..The Jewish Fund played a key role in coordinating the burials. T
heir chairman, Dr. Richard Krugel, said: 'This brings to an end a very tragic time in our community,'

May they rest in peace.

Posted by Jill Fallon at 8:11 PM | Permalink
Categories: Funerals, Burials and Cremations

Evicted from their own graves

Mummified corpses removed from crypts after relatives can no longer afford fees in Guatemala

Armed only with a sledgehammer and mask to cover his mouth and nose, a Guatemalan grave-cleaner begins the wretched task of smashing open a crypt and removing whatever rank remains lurk inside.

 Sledgehammer To Tombs

A human skull with thick hair still clinging to it is pulled from one of the dark tombs, a miniature baby coffin, adorned with a white flower, from another. 

 Baby Exhumation

The men are removing the dead whose families can no longer afford the luxury of a private crypt and as soon as a lease on a grave expires, the cleaners will come and free up the space for a new paying customer.

Any remains that are not claimed will be stuffed into plastic bags, labelled and sent to a mass grave to be reburied.
Most of the corpses excavated are largely decomposed, but those that were laid to rest in the upper crypts, where conditions are hot and dry, become mummified.

As the team of grave-cleaners go to work in Guatemala City, their manner hardly appears different to labourers on a building site or workers at a recycling centre.

Bags of broken corpses are tossed into heaps like piles of garbage and transported on forklift trucks with the clothes they were buried in still on their backs.
Posted by Jill Fallon at 9:16 AM | Permalink
Categories: Cemeteries and graves

Forced to clean the house for her own wake

Palestinian mum kills 16-year-old daughter over fake affair

A  Palestinian mother waited for her 16-year-old daughter to go to bed, tied a rope around her neck and strangled her to death. The woman murdered her own daughter after neighbors lied to her that the girl had an affair with their son.

Residents, who spoke to the Palestinian Arabic language daily Donia Al Watan, said the mother had already been cruel to her daughter as she used to force her to do all household work because she does not like female offspring.

It was this cruelty that made her rush and murder the girl without bothering to check if what neighbors said about her daughter was true.

“Just go and see your daughter’s pictures on my son’s mobile phone,” the neighboring woman told the mother after an argument, according to the paper.

“The mother then started her plan to kill her daughter…residents said she had made her daughter clean the house for two days so the family will be prepared to receive would-be mourners on their daughter’s death.”

After the murder, the family left the girl in her bed all the night. In the morning, they went straight to hospital and said their daughter had died of heart attack.
Posted by Jill Fallon at 6:42 AM | Permalink
Categories: Death and Dying

September 15, 2014

Man gives wife his last breath

‘True love like no other,’ Man gives wife his last breath

An elderly couple, who had been together for more than 60 years, was found dead inside their home.

Investigators say Dave Molter died trying to give his wife, Corrine, CPR; giving his wife his last breath.

They  believe Molter, 84, died while trying to do CPR on his wife Corrine, 83.  His body was found next to her in their home.
Corrine had advanced Alzheimer’s and Dave waited on her hand and foot.

Brandy Williams, the caregiver for Dave and Corrine,  broke down, talking about losing a couple she called best friends.

“Just wonderful people. I’ve never met anybody like that in my life,” said Williams.

Williams,  the caregiver for Dave and Corrine Molter, said,  "Just being there and seeing it with my own eyes, it’s like true love like no other. It’s the kind you see in movies, not the kind you see in real life,” she said.
Posted by Jill Fallon at 8:36 AM | Permalink
Categories: Death and Dying

September 4, 2014

Further down the slippery slope

In Belgium.  Doctor Kills Depressed Woman in Euthanasia, Doesn’t Tell Family Until Next Day

Oncologist Wim Distelmans killed Godelieva De Troyer, a Belgium citizen who was not terminally ill, because of “untreatable depression” in April 2012 after receiving consent from three other physicians who had no previous involvement with her care…..Distelmans has no psychiatric qualifications, and none of the doctors involved had any enduring doctor-patient relationship with De Troyer. … In addition, the commission the government established to investigate any failure to observe the euthanasia law has been led, since its creation, by Distelmans. Despite evidence of widespread abuse of the law, the commission has never referred a case to the prosecutor.

No one contacted Mortier before his mother’s death despite the fact that he says her depression was not only largely the result of a break-up with a man, but also due to her feelings of distance from her family.

Her son Tom Mortier is now challenging Belgium's euthanasia laws which also allow children to be killed.

Alliance Defending Freedom filed an application with the European Court of Human Rights Wednesday on behalf of Tom Mortier,

“The government has an obligation to protect life, not assist in promoting death,” said ADF Litigation Staff Counsel Robert Clarke. “A person can claim that she should be able to do whatever she pleases, but that does not override the government’s responsibility to protect the weak and vulnerable. We are encouraging the European Court to uphold this principle, which is completely consistent with the European Convention on Human Rights.”
Posted by Jill Fallon at 12:11 PM | Permalink
Categories: Euthanasia

August 29, 2014

Final moments on death row

A deacon recounts the final moments of a man on death row

After reading from 1 John, I asked Joe who his master was, fear or God’s love. He got the message. He was assured his death this day would not get the last word, love would. Then we talked about giving his life up as an offering, that what sometimes seems to be a curse holds the potential to be a great blessing, a blessing because of the cross. This day the blessing would be eternal life — supernatural life with God.

I asked him if he believed it was possible for God to make something good out of what was bad or seemed lost. I pointed to who he was many years ago and who he had become after encountering Christ. I assured him that God could use the darkness of this day, too, to end in good as well. He smiled and understood what I was saying.

I told him fear was beneath him at this point in his journey, he belonged to Christ.

I also stated that this day was his day to be Simon of Cyrene. This day was his day to help carry the cross, to help Jesus in his own way for what is lacking in the sufferings of Christ (Col. 1:24).

I then described the irony of the day. This day which is meant to be a punishment will be filled with grace, if only you surrender your entire self to God, offering up all of the good and bad of your life to God, to lay every bit of it at the cross. I explained that it was a very useful day, a day that could bring peace unlike any other day in his life. A peace so powerful there would be no fear in the moment of truth. If he trusted perfect love and let it consume him, it would cast out all fear.

We spoke about when Jesus appeared in the upper room and the very first thing He said and offered was shalom — peace be with you. Jesus was saying you are one with God, you are one with Me. I have reconciled you to Myself.
Posted by Jill Fallon at 11:38 AM | Permalink

August 28, 2014

Doctors form honor guard for brave and generous boy

Behold, a remarkable tribute to a generous child

 Chinese Boy Donor Doctors-Honor

Child’s deathbed thoughts focused on helping others

The parents of 11-year-old Liang Yaoyi were stunned by his request.  As cancer ravaged his body, the fifth grader from the Chinese city of Shenzhen focused on how he could save others if he could not survive his own battle.

"There are many people doing great things in the world," he said from his sickbed according to the "They are great, and I want to be a great kid too."  He told his parents he wanted to donate his organs so others could live.

On Friday, the brave young boy who dreamed of becoming a doctor lost his battle with brain cancer. Immediately, doctors went to work removing his organs for transplant.  Hospital officials said his kidney and liver were transplanted into other patients who were suffering from life-threatening ailments.

As his body was wheeled for the surgery room, the medical team stopped and formed an honor guard, bowing to the gurney carrying Yoayi’s remains in honor of the brave boy.
Posted by Jill Fallon at 12:49 PM | Permalink
Categories: Organ donation

Obituaries of note

The London Telegraph consistently offers the best-written obituaries in the world.  Here are just a few from the past two weeks.

Jean Redpath - a  Scottish folk singer who shared an apartment with Bob Dylan and recorded the ballads of Robbie Burns

BKS Iyengar - an Indian yoga teacher who popularized the 3,000-year-old practice among disciples across the world after 'retuning’ the violinist Yehudi Menuhin.

Ciro de Quadros - a pioneering epidemiologist who eradicated smallpox in Ethiopia then wiped out polio in Latin America, undeterred by revolutionaries and Shining Path guerrillas

Richard Attenborough - a pillar of British cinema who achieved fame as an actor before becoming a director and winning Oscars for his epic and sweeping biography of Gandhi who was knighted in 1976.

Father Jean-Marie Charles-Roux - a priest who prayed for the restoration of the Holy Roman Empire

Lady Berlin -  a French amateur golfer who fled the Nazi occupation in her Bentley coupé and later won the heart of the philosopher Sir Isaiah Berlin

Lauren Bacall -  the actress whose partnership with Humphrey Bogart brought a new allure and electricity to the big screen

Robin Williams -a comedian and actor whose live-wire delivery could express both depth of character and pathos

Posted by Jill Fallon at 12:19 PM | Permalink
Categories: Last Words, Obits, Eulogies and Epitaphs

August 22, 2014

"Is this a good day or a bad day?"

How to talk to the dying D.G, Myers

“How are you?” is not, then, the best thing to say to a cancer patient. Lisa Bonchek Adams, who lives with metastatic breast cancer and chronicles her experience in a moving and informative blog, suggests, “Is this a good day or a bad day?” The question is apt, because even though bikur holim (visiting the sick) is a mitsvah according to the Jews, a visit on a bad day may not be an act of kindness.
Don’t tell a cancer patient about someone you know who also suffered cancer—no matter what the outcome. What is your purpose in telling the story? Will the account of someone else’s “survival” flood the dying patient with hope? Will someone else’s narrated pain and death stiffen him with courage?
Most of all, don’t babble to cancer patients about alternative medicine. Don’t pester them about nutrition and vitamin supplements, don’t theorize that the cure for cancer is being suppressed to boost corporate profits, don’t speculate about what caused their cancer, don’t announce that you’ve heard, vaguely and fourth-hand, of amazing breakthroughs in treatment down in Mexico. (Every one of these has been vouchsafed to me.)
The way to talk to the dying, that is, is to return them from death to the immediate experience of life. Neither hope nor dread belong to the moment; they encourage the patient to stare outside of time; but when the moment is lived to the full, the unexpected may reveal itself: even joy.

I am not saying their friends should distract the dying from what is hap­pening to them, but rather should try, with all resources available, to remind the dying that their death is not all that is happening to them.

Every Saturday afternoon, now that I can no longer attend shul, my three closest friends in town gather in my living room and bring the Sabbath rest to me, debating halakhah and the future of the Jews, tossing around ideas and interpretations. For a few hours, I need no better reminder of what life contains.
Posted by Jill Fallon at 12:53 PM | Permalink
Categories: Death and Dying

August 21, 2014

Delaware gives executors access to digital assets

About time. Delaware becomes first state to give executors broad digital assets access   Meet the "Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets and Digital Accounts Act."

Delaware has become the first state in the US to enact a law that ensures families’ rights to access the digital assets of loved ones during incapacitation or after death.

Earlier this year, the Uniform Law Commission, a non-profit group that lobbies to enact model legislations across all jurisdictions in the United States, adopted its Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (UFADAA). Delaware is the first state to take the UFADAA and turn it into a bona fide law.

“This problem is an example of something we see all the time in our high-tech age—our laws simply haven’t kept up with advancements in technology,” said Daryl Scott, in a statement last week. Scott is a member of the Delaware House of Representatives and the lead author of the bill. “By signing this bill into law, we’re helping to protect the rights and interests of the average person in the face of a rapidly evolving digital world."

Jim Halpert, an attorney with DLA Piper, and the director of the State Privacy and Security Coalition, an umbrella group that represents Google, Yahoo, Facebook and other firms, said that he opposes the new Delaware law.

"This law takes no account of minimizing intrusions into the privacy of third parties who communicated with the deceased," he said. "This would include highly confidential communications to decedents from third parties who are still alive—patients of deceased doctors, psychiatrists, and clergy, for example—who would be very surprised that an executor is reviewing the communications. The law may well create a lot of confusion and false expectations because, as the law itself acknowledges, federal law may prohibit disclosing contents of communications."
Posted by Jill Fallon at 12:01 PM | Permalink
Categories: Estate Planning and End of Life planning

The Last Rites

Angels, Anointing and Peace at the Last Fr. Dwight Longnecker

The rite is so simple and so ordinary…no signs and wonders it seemed…no amazing miracles…or so it seemed…just the Lord’s presence and the Church’s sacrament.
At the anointing itself there was a sense of quiet wonder and gratitude.

Then in each case I went on to recite the precious prayers for passing….”Go forth upon your journey Christian soul. Go in the name of God the Father who created you. Go in the name of Jesus Christ who redeemed you. Go in the name of the Holy Spirit…Go forth….”  Then a prayer that the Holy Guardian angels might take her and lead her into paradise.  Then it was over.
The last rites are one of the times when we see the power of the sacraments and I have never seen the prayers and anointing not bring peace when they have been asks for. The person really does go forth on their journey in peace. They are given their passport and they may go in peace.  I experienced it again twice in the last three days.
I remember reading somewhere that Evelyn Waugh was questioned about the deathbed scene of Lord Marchmain in Brideshead Re-Visited. If you are unfamiliar with the scene, old Lord Marchmain comes home to die. He’s been a lapsed Catholic and rebellious against the church. Then on his death bed the priest comes and anoints him. When he leads through the confession he asks old Marchmain for a sign that he has heard and his will is engaged. Out of his unconsciousness Marchmain feebly makes the sign of the cross.

Waugh was challenged. “That scene was simply too unrealistic.” his critic complained.

Waugh replied, “That was the only thing in the book which was based in a very real experience. Everything else was fictional, but that scene was accurate. I saw such a thing happen.”
Posted by Jill Fallon at 11:55 AM | Permalink
Categories: Death and Dying
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"Love story worthy of a Hollywood script" "
King Richard III hacked to death in War of Roses, Game of Thrones
Killer found - Jack the Ripper identified through DNA
Evicted from their own graves
Unclaimed in morgue, 13 veterans laid to rest with full honors
Evicted from their own graves
Forced to clean the house for her own wake
Man gives wife his last breath
Further down the slippery slope
Final moments on death row
Doctors form honor guard for brave and generous boy
Obituaries of note
"Is this a good day or a bad day?"
Delaware gives executors access to digital assets
The Last Rites
Photo farewells
"He made a deadly choice"
Ebola burial team - the world's bravest undertakers
Cutting edge forensic lab with a team of almost all women
"If people can’t be bothered to dress for the occasion, they are not welcome at my funeral" "
Major General Harold Green, RIP
Major General Harold Green, RIP
Weird deaths
Poignant Last Photo: "We just stood and hugged and we didn’t want to do anything else.”
Wine bar in Gallic hospice
The Kindness of Strangers
The Last Post at Menin Gate
The Last Post at Menin Gate
"Bye, babe. I hope I call you."
No trust fund for my kids
"Are ya'll sure he's gone?"
Imagine if you lost your child and watched their bodies treated like this
In the "grimmest of graveyards" appalling behavior by pro Russian thugs
James Garner RIP
Rogue funeral director in Massachusetts stashed remains of more than 50 people in storage unit
Dying on your own terms in not giving up
Heartbreaking request. Heartwarming reponse
Five Rules for Consoling the Dying
“We Were Wrong, Terribly Wrong”
Funeral of Hero Firefighter
Couple laid to rest in one casket
Death Becomes Her
Funny epitaphs
"I want to be a burden on my family as I die, and for them to be a burden on me"
"London is one giant grave"
"'They want noise and they want speed"
Tragic sudden deaths
They were just out for an evening walk
Death 101
"The dead are no longer welcome at their own funerals"

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Quotes of Note

As a well-spent day brings happy sleep, so life well used brings happy death - Leonardo da Vinci

Dream as if you'll live forever, live as if you'll die today.-James Dean.

I would like to believe when I die that I have given myself away like a tree that sows seed every spring and never counts the loss, because it is not loss, it is adding to future life. It is the tree's way of being. Strongly rooted perhaps, but spilling out its treasure on the wind.- May Sarton

September 2014
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As Time Goes By –what it’s really like to get older
Millie, oldest blogster on the Internet Arrow of Time
Age Maps
How old do you think I am
Letter to self of 10 years ago
Life Lessons
Live and learn and pass it on
Soul of the Web
What I have learned The Collected Wisdom
Great examples Digital Biographies
I photograph to remember
Grandma’s camera
American Business Leaders Video Project
Pepys’ Diary
Thoreau’s journals, blog form
No soup, just matzo balls
Amazing stories Like popcorn, you can’t read just one
Center for Life Stories Preservation
American life histories Federal Writers’ Project 1936-40
Next Exit
Ticket stubs – tales of the ephermal based on the flotsam of life
H-Net Oral History
Oral History Association
Turning Memories into Memoirs
First person accounts of Veterans
Former slaves tell their stories
American Memory from the Library of Congress
Our fathers who are in heaven
Jewish Women’s Archive
Death and Dying
EPERC - end of life care for health care professionals
Hospice patients alliance consumer information
Hospice Net find a hospice
Supporting Terri Schiavo
Obituaries are Life Stories
Jade Walker One line about death, the rest amazing lives
International Association of Obituarists
National Obituary Archive
Epitaph Browser
Ethical Wills
Susan Turnbull – Because what you have learned is as important as what you have earned
Barry BainesPreserving your legacy of values. Lots of examples
Law and Lawyers
American College of Trust and Estate Counsel
Lawyer Finder
Lawyer Locator Martindate Hubell
National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys
National Association of Financial and Estate Planning
I used to believe
To Do Before I Die
Who Gets Grandma’s Yellow Pie Plate
Charity Navigator – the nations largest charity evaluator
Sign up to be an organ donor
The Inheritance Project Lived lessons from three heirs
Network for Grateful Living
Showcase for new blogs
Date Archives
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
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December 2013
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Recommended Reading
My Top Picks
Creating Better Lives – Adult Development
Creating Better Legacies
Death and Dying
Life Rules and Life Lessons
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