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We all know it -- photographs are treasures


  • We all know it -- photographs are treasures

    My brother died last Sunday. (Aug. 31st, 2008)

    His diagnosis of myeloma cancer had been a shock, although he and I knew his weight loss might be due to some form of cancer, but his downhill dive while in the hospital (pneumonia and other infections) surprised him and all of us. He was (only) 69, and we had relatives who lived well into their 80's; he had been a career military man - strong, active, and only slightly damaged during his tours; he certainly prided himself on his strength and ability to withstand the rigors of life -- but strength finally ebbs.

    As a career Army soldier, he was to be buried with military honors at a nearby veterans' cemetary. I decided to speak at his service, but I wondered what else I might do to highlight his life and help those who attended know their friend better -- the answer was, of course, to print photos of different times in his life.

    His son is only 27, and never knew my brother as a young man; many of his friends who could attend had known him after his retirement from the military, and some had only recently met him during the beginning of his physical decline. Photos of him as a toddler with our mother, as an little boy holding a wooden rifle and wearing an army cap, as a young soldier - grinning while sitting on a tank or looking very serious in his official army portrait, holding his son as a baby on his shoulders at the zoo, standing next to his almost grown son and trying to look as big and strong as that big/strong son, smiling as the older, semi-retired man that he was months ago -- these images would give more people a better view of who my brother had been throughout his life.

    Tears were shared, stories were shared, and with the use of photos -- more memories and aspects of his life were shared.

    Take photos of your family and friends and pets and favorite places and anything else you hold dear -- they will be treasured by you as you re-live the memories, and they will be treasured by those who remain after you are gone.

    • palms
      palms commented
      Editing a comment
      sorry to hear about your loss, my sympathy's go to you and your family

      You are right about making memories by using your camera they are always treasured, but may i also add, Dont forget to add yourself (i.e. the photographer ) in to the photos's, i have lost count of the family functions where it appears that i am "not there " as i am always the one taking the snaps and i have hundreds of the grandkids with very one bar me! so i now get in on the act so that they have there memories of me ( even though i do not like being that side of the camera )

      best wishes

    • CJ Swartz
      CJ Swartz commented
      Editing a comment
      "Don't forget to add yourself (i.e. the photographer ) in to the photos..."

      Great point, Palms!! Those family treasures will end up with the kids and grandkids, and they should include everyone - even us camera-shy folks who hide behind the camera.

    • llinares
      llinares commented
      Editing a comment
      Thank you for sharing with us. I am retired military as is my father. My sister and I have been putting together a series of photos of my father. He was gone so often during our childhood that I never go to know him until a few years ago when we took him to see the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. I echo your sentiments take pictures at every chance you get. Thanks again.

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