A Fond Farewell

May 26, 2002

My Grandmother passed away this month in Los Angeles. She had been ill for a while but one is never ready to actually hear that death has come. We got a call in the middle of the night & got the message and talked to my mother the next morning. Alex’s friend Paul was in town visiting so while they went to the museum I went to the pier on the Hudson River. It was cold and drizzly so there weren’t many folks about. I sat and looked at the water & wrote a letter to my Grandmother. I also wrote her a poem. (Read my poem)

She was an extraordinary woman, my Grandmother. Very unique and independent. She certainly did have a wonderful family. I was reminded of this in spades when I went to Los Angeles for the funeral. (Unfortunately Alex had to work and couldn’t come with me.) Surrounded by Aunt, Uncles, Cousins & Loved Ones we had a very special service for a very special woman. Another ceremony for her cremation a few days later was just as exceptional.

Having all the family around in her house that seems stuck in the fifties/sixties brought back so many childhood memories. Singing, playing piano, congregating in the kitchen or back patio, laughter everywhere. It was a great gathering, and I know she would have loved it, as she loved all of us.

She was a daughter, a sister, a teacher, a wife, a historian, a mother, a political activist, a reporter, a local newspaper owner, a spiritualist, a musician, a real estate broker, a church activist, a grandmother, a writer, a philosopher… and so much more.

She will be remembered much in our family…


Remembrance, Frances Alsup

Frances McNeill Alsup, age 87, was born June 21, 1914 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and passed away May 11, 2002 at her home in Glendora, California. Her parents were Lauchlin McNeill and May Peele McNeill. She was married November 26, 1936, to William Luther Alsup, who died in 1983. She is survived by her son James Alsup and wife Elaine of San Diego, California; by her daughter Meredith Kurtz of Toluca Lake, California; by her daughter Dorothy Alsup of Vallejo, California, by her son William Alsup of Portland, Oregon; by her grandaughter Melissa Kurtz of Los Angeles, California; by her grandaughter Tiffany Kurtz of New York City, New York; by her grandson Andrew Alsup and wife Brendy of San Luis Obispo, California; by her grandaughter Rebecca Alsup of San Diego, California; by her great-grandson, Samuel Alsup (son of Andrew); and by her sister, Mary Van Kirk of Claremont, California.

A memorial service was held at Oakdale Memorial Park, Glendora, California, Friday, May 17, 2002.


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