MORE AND MORE, I READ OBITUARIES. Probably because I am aging and more people I know are now dying.
I didn’t know Jim Mueller of Clearwater, though. Yet I still read his 22 column inch obit published April 21 in The Gaylord Hub, a small southern Minnesota weekly where I worked as a reporter for two years right out of college. The Hub arrives in my mailbox each week, a tangible reminder of my past and of the passage of time.
James Henry Mueller left his hometown of Gaylord in 1973, five years before I arrived. If he had still resided there, I likely would have interviewed him. He was that kind of guy. Socially active. A storyteller. A businessman. A character. He would have made for an interesting feature.
Consider this line from the beginning of his obit: Jimmy grew up doted on by his ma and arguing with his pa.
But it is the ninth and final paragraph of this lengthy obit which makes me wish I’d known this 88-year-old:
Jim’s many hats included: Veteran Navy Man, Well Driller, Grain Bin Mover, Beer Seller, Horse Wrangler, and Postmaster. He was a smooth dancer and an ace at bridge. He will fondly be remembered as a Teller of Tales, A Spinner of Yarns, and a Preacher of Sermons.
In addition, paragraph eight notes that Jim donated his body to science. Even in death, his story continues.
NOW IT’S YOUR TURN. How would you like to be remembered? What hats would others say you wore? What do you think of this trend to personalize obituaries with insights and commentary?
© Copyright 2016 Audrey Kletscher Helbling