Eulogy for Jean M. Pearce (1941-2012): A son’s tribute

by
Kenneth J. Pearce
Funeral Mass at Mars, PA
9/18/12

[Jean Marie Hathazy Pearce was the wife of Carl D. Pearce (1942-2004)]

I began thinking about writing this tribute to my mom while sitting in the North Royalton Middle School parking lot after one of Garrett’s football games. I was waiting for him to emerge from the locker room and I thought to myself, this is something mom did for me many times over the years while I was growing up.  Sitting and waiting.  Of all the better things she could be doing…. She took care of me that way.  She made sure all of my needs were met at the expense of her own.  Now the shoe is on the other foot and I’m the one taking care of my kids.  I find myself thinking of how I took her for granted back then and of how I didn’t appreciate her and what she was doing for me.  As it turns out, she was always doing things for me.

When Diana and I were growing up, mom was a dedicated housewife.  That was her role.  She cooked and cleaned, ironed and sewed, paid the bills.  All of our basic needs were met. We didn’t long for much because mom was there and she provided.

I will never forget her fabulous cooking. At the top of my list are the delicious Thanksgiving Dinners she hosted over the years.  They came complete with the best stuffing you’ll find anywhere, hands down.  Sorry ladies, but it’s true.  She also made the best cole slaw and potato salad you’ll find anywhere.  Unfortunately, I never obtained these secret recipes from her and now I’m afraid she has taken them with her.

As far as the house goes, she always kept things very neat and tidy.  Rooms were always well dusted and swept.  You’d never find clothes or any other items lying around.  Everything had it’s place.  As my wife Niki will attest to, I’m sure I inherited this trait from her.

As I got older and got to know my mom better, she became someone I could confide in.  She was someone I could talk to.  No, we weren’t solving world peace, but we did manage to talk about more than just the weather.  Although, honestly at times I swear that was her favorite topic.  We shared each others thoughts and feelings.  We engaged each other and took an active interest in each others daily lives.  Although I wish she was a more open person, I was able to appreciate her for who she was, a kind, loving, caring, religious, private, simple woman.

Through the years, she kept a daily journal of her thoughts and of what transpired that day.  I remember asking her “Why are you writing that for?”  Who’s going to read it?  To which she quietly replied “you will” and gave me that sheepish grin of hers.  I simply shook my head in disbelief thinking she had more important things to do.  Now I believe she scribbled these notes as a means of therapy.  Perhaps they helped her deal with the loss of her husband in 2004, perhaps they helped her cope with the near daily headaches and migraines she suffered from.  Or perhaps they helped her deal with the uncertainty of the path ahead.  We’ll never know for sure.  But one reoccurring theme throughout these journals was clear to me and that was her undeniable commitment and dedication to helping raise a wonderful granddaughter, Jordan.  I do believe Jordan became her purpose and her challenge.

Now that my mom has left this life, I will always remember her for the good person she was and for the kind heart she had.  She was a simple woman making do in a very busy time. Mom I love you!  Rest in Peace!

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