BETTY KEE HARWELL
1955 – 2012
Betty was a “rah rah” girl, cheerleader.
Betty did not need a microphone to be heard.
She was a great sports fan, given her upbringing in a family of all boys.
Our family went from coast to coast over our married life and Betty was our protector, strength, and anchor when the ‘boat’ needed to dock.
Betty blessed me with 3 extraordinary gifts in my life.
–She accepted my proposal of marriage, as we were “holding hands.”
–She blessed me with two beautiful and brilliant children. (And the baby girl who made us grandparents. If you ever have an opportunity to meet her, you will know that she should have been named ‘Lil’ Betty.’)
Betty is having fun up there, enjoying more power than she had on earth. She is laughing at us as a puppet master would. I quite frankly like that! I wrote many poems over the years and the only one that Betty did not turn her nose up to was “When Nine Birds Fly.”
“when nine birds fly”
today, I saw nine birds fly,
not ten, and then,
I began to ask why, why not ten?
were they related,
or just slated, to fly in groups of nine, not ten?
were they a family going to an occasion
dressed to impress, or just to create a mess!
think about the number, nine, not ten,
and then you wonder why, and then,
something in your mind tries to find,
why this thought could come to you as the nine flies by.
do you have a sickness as you try to figure out why,
the nine fly by, and not ten?
so, I guess you will continue to wonder then,
why nine fly by and not ten.
Now we all know why nine birds fly, not ten today, don’t we?
You all may be wondering what was the third gift.
–Betty gave to me the opportunity to say goodbye.
As we were “holding hands” again, playing our wedding song by the Carpenters, We’ve Only Just Begun to Live, the Super Bowl game was coming to a conclusion. (Obviously, we were not watching the game, however; it was on the tv.)
As I was holding her hands, I told her to tell her Mama, Papa and brother that I loved them, and to tell my Father I said “hi.”
Betty was never in any pain, God Bless. I will never forget Betty’s final gift to me during our final private moment together.
We have all been blessed by Betty’s strength, love, strong personality, and most of all her bright smile. If anything, Betty was fun!
She will be remembered and missed.
@John S. Harwell, 2012