Saturday, June 8, 2013

The post I never wanted to write

Today is my mother’s 85th birthday – I wish she were here to celebrate it with us.

Gerry 2012

Geraldine Martin was born in Fresno, California on June 8, 1928 and was the only child of Clara Maxine Fitzgerald and Earle Laurence Martin.  By the look of this photo, my grandmother looks a little perplexed about what to do with this baby!

Clara_Geraldine 1928

6 months later, little Gerry was sitting up on her own and looked quite proud of herself.

Geraldine c 1928

And look how cute she was with her little ringlets.

Geraldine c 1932

After some disruption in mom’s life due to her parents divorcing and spending some time in Oakland, by high school she was back in Fresno where she met my dad, Gordon Levy.  I don’t know for sure but I would guess it was love at first sight.

Geraldine swimsuite 1945

I think this was either her graduation picture or her engagement picture.  Either way, she looks very happy.

Geraldine c 1949

I’m sure one of the happiest days of her life was her wedding day, September 3, 1950.  This photo hangs in the hallway of the home my parents bought in 1957 - she was a beautiful bride!

Geraldine 9_3_1950

One of my favorite photos of Mom and Dad together from January, 1985.  They both look so happy!

Gerry Gordon 1985

Mom and Dad celebrated their 50th anniversary in 2000 – what a great family celebration we had!  We took photos of the entire family but this one really captures the spirit of the day.

Gerry & Gordon 9_3_2000

Sadly, just 5 years later Dad was gone.  And since then Mom had done a great job of living as an independent woman.  Until this year when things started getting really, really hard for her and her body just started to give out. But she rarely asked for help and only after we insisted did she give in.  And just like she’d done for nearly 85 years, she did exactly what she wanted and finally let go.  Just 17 days before her 85th birthday, Mom was gone.


And that’s why I’ve dreaded writing this post ever since I started my blog two years ago.  I knew at some point there would be “firsts” – birthday, Mother’s Day, Christmas, anniversary – without Mom.  I just didn’t think it would be this soon.

Happy birthday, Mom.  We love you and miss you!


  1. Debi, So sorry for your lose but what a sweet remembrance of a very loved mother. Sue

  2. Her smile never changed, did it? The best gift a parent can give a child is happy memories.

  3. Debi,

    I'm so sorry for your loss. What a lovely woman your mom was. You've written a beautiful tribute to her.

  4. I'm so sorry of your loss, Debi. You've written a terrific post and your mother looks like she was such a happy person...a ray of sunshine. Hang in there, I know it's tough, but she is still with you!

    1. Thanks, Heather. I sure never wanted to write this.

  5. My heart goes out to you. So sorry to hear of the loss of your mother. You have made a beautiful tribute to your mom here.