Wednesday, January 20, 2016
In October of last year (http://www.penmachinedad.blogspot.ca/2015/10/back-to-reality.htm) I posted some comments about our trip to Germany. At the beginning I mentioned our visit to my mother's younger sister, 102 years old at the time, the only one of six siblings still alive.
She died a week ago of congestive heart failure (the same disease caused my mother's death fourteen years ago). Apparently, she contracted a severe case of pneumonia and developed a painful circulation blockage in her right arm. She also refused food and drink and died four days after admission to hospital.
From the odd comments my mother made over the years, we know that this sister and my mother were no wallflowers. In the early 1930s the two of them would often visit Berlin's cabarets, pubs and other entertainment venues and had a pretty active social life. They probably made Berlin unsafe for the men of their generation (my mother only chuckled when I once mentioned my thinking in that regard). It was likely the best time of their lives; this was all counterbalanced when they suffered great adversities during and after the second world war.
Both my mother and her sister had a full life. Most of their generation are now gone; it is a natural progression of life, but still sad.
Update: Just this morning, I received an email from my Austrian cousin that her mother (my father's sister) has also died (age 94) after having dealt with dementia for several years. We last saw her in 1983, when she came here for a visit. She was the last one of her generation in our family.
A sad start for this year...