I went to the memorial service for Jan Underwood this morning. I was a little unsure if I should go because I have not met her and the event will be full of people I don't know. But it turned out well and I have even met a few new people.
Most who spoke were teaching in the Writing Salon, some were there early on since it was founded over a decades ago. Many recounted the stories and dialogs with Jane. All were very appreciative of the opportunities to have worked with her and the impact it has on their professional and personal life. It seemed a little bit impersonal to say most of their interactions were focus on work, until you realize her work, her passion and her life is really one.
People sometimes call these memorial service a celebration of life. I assure you this is not an euphemism. It is a celebration of life in the truest sense. When you looked around and saw 50 people from all walk of life gathering for her in this morning you knew she has created quite a legacy.
It was a quiet, peaceful and beautiful spot in the park surrounded by tall trees. Of all the places I could be this morning, I was there with others to remember her. I felt contented and grateful for what life had offered us.