POSTS WITH TAG: funerals

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    Fate works in mysterious ways. Buddine Bullinger, who has worked at a Walmart in North Dakota for the past 25 years, knew she was adopted and never tried to contact her biological mother, despite being aware of her identity. When a coworker alerted her to the fact that her mother had died and her obituary had appeared in a local newspaper, Buddine also learned that her mom had another daughter. She reunited with her sister, Deidre Handtmann, which is incredible enough. But the two couldn't help but wonder if they shared any other siblings. With a bit of detective work and calls to the adoption agency from which they were placed with families, they discovered that, indeed, they had more brothers and sisters -- three of them! And even crazier: one brother, who also lived nearby, realized he had known Buddine for years. 

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    Don't feel alone if your first thought when you read this is: oh my goodness, what?! It's extremely difficult to imagine how anyone would handle the death of their child, and I find it nearly impossible to judge a parent's choices if he or she is in this horrible situation. One father from Italy did something unusual -- but incredibly touching -- after his 20-year-old son died in a car accident earlier this year: he had his remains turned into a diamond that will endure and be passed down to family members for generations to come. 

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    While I wasn't personally invited to a family member's intimate wedding, his sister was, and while the ceremony was far away, requiring travel and hotel expenses, I was surprised when she was seriously thinking about not going.

    She was his only living family since their parents were dead!

    And yes, I understand that it can be a financial strain to attend weddings, funerals, even milestone birthdays. But if it's possible, I really strongly believe you should try to go, even if you have kids.

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    A Georgia couple came home one night last week to find their home burglarized. Horrible enough, but the Hugheys were devastated to find the thieves had made off with more than just a few pieces of jewelry. Also missing: a silver box containing the ashes of their baby boy, Caleb Ean Hughey, whom they lost at birth in 2008.

    Just when you think this story can't get any sadder, it does.

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    Everyone was standing around the living room, silently eating cake from paper plates. A room crammed full of people that I didn’t know were memorializing a woman I barely knew, the wife of my husband’s co-worker who’d died of cancer. I squeezed onto the crowded leather couch, and watched a continuous loop of photos of the deceased -- with her husband, with her friends, with her kids -- accompanied by maudlin music on a laptop. The pain in the room was palpable, and I wanted to run out the door.

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