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Uncle, unlocked








Right: Don V. Becker, January 7, 1913 - December 27, 2006

Left:    Richard Q. Becker (my dad),  March 10, 1917 - December 19, 1985


At the last, tenderly,

From the walls of the powerful, fortress'd house,

From the clasp of the knitted locks--from the keep of the well-closed doors,

Let me be wafted.


Let me glide noiselessly forth;

With the key of softness unlock the locks--with a whisper,

Set ope the doors, O Soul!


Tenderly! be not impatient!

(Strong is your hold, O mortal flesh!

Strong is your hold, O love.)

                         --The Last Invocation, Walt Whitman


Posted on Thursday, December 28, 2006 at 11:41AM by Registered CommenterBrenda from Brooklyn | Comments7 Comments

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Reader Comments (7)

I'm sorry for your loss. Your uncle's story had an entire family (mine) across the country rooting that Uncle Don would make it home for Christmas. And to an old man winding down his life, I think being at home would be everything :-) You did a very good thing.
December 28, 2006 at 01:36PM | Unregistered CommenterStuccohouse
Those weren't nurses tearing him apart, they were angels trying to lift him. He really wanted to be home, didn't he?

Peace to both of you.
December 28, 2006 at 07:12PM | Unregistered CommenterJenn
So sorry for the loss of Uncle Don. I'm sure he is tuly Home now looking down and with a smile thinking what a lucky man he is.

You and your family brought him happiness for Christmas. He was able to be home. God Bless

December 28, 2006 at 07:50PM | Unregistered CommenterSusan
It's a blessing that your Uncle Don could be home when his time came. Please accept our sympathies for your loss and our prayers for God's comfort and strength for you as you work through taking care of what was left behind when his soul was released from this world.
December 28, 2006 at 08:47PM | Unregistered CommenterLillian
God rest his soul. How wonderful that you were able to arrange things so that he could leave the "Good" institution and die in his own home. I think that qualifies as a happy ending by any definition.

December 28, 2006 at 09:53PM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Cahill
I'm very sorry about your uncle. But thank you for sharing this deeply meaningful story, and for the beautiful way you write.
December 29, 2006 at 12:34PM | Unregistered CommenterJola
Oh, Brenda. I decided to listen to some music while finally -- finally! -- catching up with you, you who were so kind to me in my hours of Law School Application Madness, and as I read of your uncle's last days of freedom -- I swear I am not making this up -- my jukebox program kicked up "Solsbury Hill." Of course you know I'm in tears right now.

Happy New Year, dear, dear Brenda. Other people have said it better than I can, but it still bears repeating: what a wondrous thing you did for your uncle.
December 31, 2006 at 02:44PM | Unregistered CommenterBakerina

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