This has been one of those “fortunately…unfortunately” sort of weeks. Yesterday was the most significant of the unfortunate days. I received the news that my uncle, Jack Robertson, passed away in his sleep Friday night. Jack was the last living uncle on either side of the family and was my uncle on my father’s side through his marriage to my aunt Juanita.

One of the first things I thought of as my mother filled me in on the situation, was how Jack would tie my shoelaces, and/or my brother, Dennis’, shoelaces, on family occasions such as Thanksgiving and Christmas. He would sneak up behind our chairs while someone distracted us. When we got up to go to the bathroom, sort presents or the like, we began to take a step and fell flat on our face. Which, to our dismay, everyone found amusing.

Jack was in the Navy during World War II. He and Juanita never had any children, but they always enjoyed entertaining Dennis and myself when we were younger, then my daughter, Jennifer, and then our three boys when they were little. As the boys grew older, Jack’s health deteriorated to the point to where he was confined to a wheelchair. My father helps them manage their affairs, including hiring a caregiver when Juanita could no longer care for Jack herself.

Juanita fell Friday morning and Dad went over to help get her to the hospital. While we were at J.D.’s baseball game Friday afternoon he talked to the doctor. Juanita had some bruising, but no bones were broken. Since being confined to a wheelchair, Jack has felt bad that Juanita had to care for him and he could not take care of her. Juanita’s fall was too much strain for him and he went quietly in the night. Rest in peace, Uncle Jack.

Peace be with you.