My Dad died 2 years ago on 12 July, it was very sudden a hot Sunday in Montreal. He did not want the usual funeral service, did not like the expense of it all, could not see the point. He had spoken with his doctor who was also affiliated with the Medical School at McGill University in Montreal. He had made all his arrangements ahead of time, so we had no involvement but to honour his commitment.
In June 2017 McGill University notified us that they were releasing his remains and according to their protocol, they had a service of thanks for all those who donated their bodies to the advancement of medical science, very nice service done in one of the grand halls of the University, the funeral parlour then took care of the cremation.
My Dad also had a wish, he wanted to be buried at sea. So I made those arrangements with music, a fiddler, French Champagne Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin and a floral tribute.
So we honoured his wish. My sister and brother-in-law were with us and Will on whom I can always count and have all these years for his support. What was uncertain was the weather, stormy and unpredictable, though today by 2pm the heavens cleared up and the sun appeared, turning the clouds into shiny silver streaks on a blue background.
It was quite beautiful, the captain took the ship out some distance and at a certain point in the open sea his ashes were released and the flowers thrown into the water while the fiddler played. My sister reminded me that today 28 September was the date of the death of our mother 4 years ago. I thought it was Fate who wanted this event to coincide with the date of her death. My parents had been together some 64 years.
The sea was calm and a cool breeze was felt while the sky smiled on us. I just looked at the vast expanse of the sea and became reflective about my parents, time and our place in the universe, there was not a sound except for the wind. The captain and his wife were very kind and thoughtful throughout this journey on the waters.
On our way home going West the sun was very bright as it was setting, the clouds where now golden with a hint of pink and violet. We were quiet in the car, tired from the day and happy it had gone so well. Our duty is done and Dad got his wish and we know, all of us, that he would have been very happy with this day.
Dad on vacation in Greece with the Aegean sea behind him.
Our brother Stephan who lives in Florida could not be with us unfortunately, but here we are Will, Sophie, Andrew and me on the boat.