P0005104 My last surviving grandparent, durable, inimitable Grandma Anderson, finally exchanged this world for a better one, this fall. She had been living in Sunset with Ruth and Jim Dunaway, a blessing for them all, especially given Loophie’s notable skills as a nurse and Jim’s quiet, inborn helpfulness.

We were glad that our kids had been able to become acquainted with her at our family reunion in Batesville, in 1983. We treasure those portraits we took with each on the couch with her.
Each responded in his own way to the news of her death. Debbie was moved to sit down at the piano and compose a sweet, elegaic piece, entitling it “Eloese.”1 When Rick returned from his mission, the next spring, Deb’s piece was sitting on the piano. He sat down and played it, commenting that it must have taken her a long time to create it. She repied, “Yeah, nearly twenty minutes.”

I can’t be sure, but I suspect Rick had that incident in mind when he decided, later on, not to pursue a career as a performing musician, despite his manifest talents.

He may also have recalled the time, during his high school years, that he and I had volunteered to man the phone bank for a Handel & Haydn Society fundraiser. They kindly provided a buffet for our nourishment, and we got seated at a table with George Geyer, then President of the Society, and Thomas Dunn, its Artistic Director and principal conductor. Can’t provide any great level of detail, but Rick did ask these distinguished and friendly gentlemen some penetrating questions about the life of a professional musician, and they replied with candor.

1Yes, Deb’s spelling was better than that of the last editor who saw the obituary, before publication.
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