My husbands Sister and my sister in-law, our closest supporter Claretha passed away. She was seventy years young. She was bold, courageous, most of all beautiful. At times a comedian telling me that she was afraid of nothing. She said that she had locked her dog in the bathroom so he could not roam around the house as she had did so many times. This one night a burglar broke in, waking Claretha, jumping from her bed retrieving her weapon of choice.  her 38 reasons why you should not disturb. Fully dressed in her night gown without shoes. Thank god it was a summer night and the streets were empty. Chasing the assailant six blocks all the while the dog was still in the bathroom. She stopped to discover her dress code, a night gown. no shoes would get her arrested along with her 38 reasons.

Although she never caught the assailant, she still pursued him, nevertheless. I admired her courage. She loved her grandchildren with out a doubt, always in the mix of them, correcting where needed. She would always have one of them with her. Claretha express that she wanted to go to the upcoming flower show. She brought Simone who she micromanaged. Simone took it all in stride. We had the best time. It was the first time I got to know her as a woman, mother as a grand mother. What really was interesting is she was a daddy’s girl and expressed it so many times. She was his protector and felt he just belong to her exclusively.  A nurse for the better part of her life. Claretha’s big brother Ed was a constant phone exchange of just to call. Ed would look at his phone and say, “my sister.” with great affection.

No matter what, she would call to make sure he was alright. She would phone him on his birthday reminding him that he was getting older. When he called her he could not get her on the phone because of her ministry on her answering machine about the power of god.  Claretha was a traveler of the world.  Places that we could only dream. She bought a ranch style home with three bedrooms in Brown Mills New Jersey.A house I wish I could afford to buy. This ranch style 3 bedrooms, large kitchen, bathroom. Outside-was acres of land for miles. At least 20 50-foot-tall trees, a pool and a plant nursery. Claretha lived rich and on her own terms. She lived life no matter what anyone thought or cared. On this day her birthday I choose to say thank you for being a presence in our  life.