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Greta Hamsher Murphy, 1924-2006


(My sister wanted to write a thank-you note to everyone; her sentiments go double for me. — JH) 

We (my husband and I and our 13 year old son) have been amazed and blessed by reading your comments.  I have been comforted and have felt a real sense of peace seeing the community my sister has built (she’s always been the "hey let’s do this" one of us two) and knowing you are there for us. The comments have been just beautiful, incredible, and a multitude of other adjectives I can think of.

I am also touched by those who commented that "Your Mom must have been an incredible woman to have raised a daughter like you", well, folks, she was. I’ve always thought that my father had the "book" smarts, Mom had the street smarts. Dad would have the dream, and Mom would implement. Both of them could sell ice to those living in Antarctica. Jane might not agree with that, 😉 But I know she would agree that Mom would battle the Devil himself for her daughters.

One of the thing I most enjoyed about having my mother live with us in the last 6 years was her sense of humor. On Saturday before she died, I was giving my 3 year old a bath and he got me enthusiastically, energetically,  wet. (BTW, Christy, my 3 year old likes Wallace and Grommit too) Russ and I happened to be in her bathroom so I ran into Mom’s closet there and grabbed a shirt. My husband called me saying Mom was declining rapidly and I had better get to the hospital. I took the kids to day care and headed over to the hospital. Later, I was adjusting my mother’s oxygen….she opened her eyes, cocked an eyebrow, and said "Nice shirt, Pam."

My husband has spent the last seven nights in the hospital with my mother, holding her hand as she fell asleep. She adored her son-in-law and they shared a teasing relationship that was a lot of fun to see. On Wednesday night, the night  before she died, my husband was reading with his feet propped up on her bed, and had his walking shorts on. She reached over and patted his knee, saying "You really do have nice legs dear."  She retained her spirit and her sense of humor until the very end.

Many people have asked where they can make contributions in her name.  Mom was a big supporter of hospice and both my sister and I would encourage anyone who would like to do so to make a contribution to the hospice services in your own community.  You can also donate online here.

Well, anyway, I’m rambling, and not half the writer Jane is. Our hearts have been eased in our grief by your support and we thank you.

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