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An Unassuming Hero
Aer our small family was hit with the loss of my grandfather and sudden loss
of my aunt I found myself helping to write 2 obituaries. As I sat down thinking
of my life experiences with them it dawned on me how instrumental my Mom
had been in helping her dad, sister and other family members live the fullest
and longest lives possible. I wanted to take a moment to acknowledge that on
behalf of my family.
My Mom, Barbara (Cook) Bauer, has been a long time resident of Duxbury,
moving there in 1981. A few years earlier, as a new wife and pregnant at the
time, she and my father received news that would greatly impact their young
family. My Dad was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma and as a result
would be on and o chemotherapy the rest of his life. While ill, my Mom did
everything she could think of to bring him comfort; rubbing his back and feet,
serving cold ice water to sip, helping out with his business, all the while juggling
2 young children. She never complained other than cursing that awful disease. My Dad passed in 2001.
Shortly thereaer my grandmother developed Alzheimer’s. Barbara’s innate drive to take care of family
kicked in and for the next several years she was at her mom’s bedside holding her hand and telling her
“thank you” and “I love you mom” hoping she was heard. I know she was.
My grandfather, aged 90 and devastated by the loss of his wife expressed his desire to live at his home
in Scituate as long as possible. Barbara was able to grant this wish by traveling there 3-4 times a week,
stocking his fridge, cleaning, doing laundry, driving him to doctor appointments. He spent a total of
1 month in nursing care and passed peacefully at 102. Kudos Mom.
At a time when someone may reach their breaking point, we soon found out her sister had developed
lung cancer and had only a short time le. Mom was with her for her nal days comforting Nan as she
had many family members before.
I don’t recall my Mom ever complaining but instead she would ask me, how I was doing? at’s my
Mom, that’s Barbara. She has met life’s challenges with grace, toughness and selessness. She is an angel
and my hero.
As a family we have begun the road most families take aer the loss of loved ones; remembrance,
grappling for the new normal, what to do during the holidays. As we begin this new journey I wanted
to write this 3rd tribute in as many months, a living one to my Mom. ank you Mom. I’m sure Dad,
Grampa, Nana and Nan would all agree, you’re pretty amazing. Duxbury is lucky to have you and so am I.
I love you.
Your son,
P
Keywords State University, Massachusetts Amherst, Elon University, Duxbury High, High School, Snug Harbor, College Andrew, Fordham University, Fairfield University, Westfield State, Northeastern University, Quinnipiac University, Saint Michaels, Providence College, Endicott College
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