Posted by: Kathy | May 23, 2009

My Final Tribute

When I delivered the eulogy at my mom’s funeral, I wanted to do it with dignity and style, the way my mom would have. I started her eulogy with almost the same words she did 3 years earlier at my grandmother’s funeral:  

On November 16, 2008, the gates of Heaven opened to welcome home a beautiful woman, one with dignity and grace, someone who always put others before herself. My mom fought valiantly against pancreatic cancer for almost a year and for awhile there was winning the battle. She never complained and during the entire time she was sick, I knew of only one time that she cried. I always thought that she was the strongest of all of us, especially since I cried all the time. The outpouring of love and support my mom received from friends and people she’d met during her lifetime touched my heart. It made me realize even more what a special person she was.

My mom deeply loved her grandchildren, and they loved her as well. She expressed to me several times that one of the things that troubled her most about dying was leaving Matt and Nikki. My mom showed her love for the kids right up to the very end. She would brighten when they came over, no matter how her day had been. And she waited for her grandson to get his black belt before finally letting go. Last Saturday she had hardly spoken a word all day. When Matt told his grandmom that he had passed testing and gotten his black belt, she said over and over again “that’s wonderful.” Less than a day later she passed away.

Psalm 34:18 says “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” My mom’s death has saddened many people, and for me, watching how the cancer took her life broke my heart. But she is now at peace and we should be too. The Lord called her home to be one of His angels. My mom’s memory will be kept alive in our hearts and she will always be with us. Thomas Campbell said “to live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.” Although we are saddened by my mom’s passing, this is a time for us to remember the special things about Marcia Harman, the happy times, and the lasting impact she made on the lives of everyone in this room.

Both of my mom’s parents lived into their 90s, so I always assumed I had many more years with her, until she was diagnosed with cancer. I believe that everything happens for a reason and my mom’s diagnosis showed me the importance of family and letting someone know how you feel. I opened my heart to my mom, something I had never done before. At some point a few years ago, I ran across a quote that stuck with me and is very fitting right now. With all the love in my heart, I say this to you, Mom – “I dropped a tear in the ocean. The day you find it is the day I will stop missing you.” I love you, Mom.

I was the last person to see my mom before the casket was closed. I stood there, just looking at her, almost waiting for her to open her eyes and say something to me. I didn’t want to say goodbye. I told my mom how much I loved her and that one day I’d see her again.


  1. This is beautiful Kathy. I dropped a tear in the ocean… what a truthful, heartbreaking, yet healing phrase. Thank you so much for sharing this with me.

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