Missing Our Beloved Uncle Terry in Delaware


Last weekend, we made our annual trip to Delaware to visit with friends and family.  My aunt and uncle moved to Delaware close to 20 years ago, so we make this trip every year or twice a year if possible...  My best friend Mary Ann also moved from Connecticut to Southern New Jersey about twelve years ago, and so if time permits, we usually try to see each other during the trip too.

This year, however, our little "family reunion" visit was missing a beloved family member--Uncle Terry.  He passed away the day after Easter this year, and so it was hard not to feel genuine sadness for his absence.  When we arrived, Little Lewie immediately started looking at pictures of Uncle Terry in the house and asking about him and God. 

"Can Uncle Terry hear us in Heaven?" my son Lewie asked.
"Sure he can," I answered.  "We can say a little prayer to him right now."
"Can we hear Uncle Terry?"
"Well, it's a little harder to hear our loved ones in heaven," I answered, "but sometimes they show us signs that they are with us."
"Where is heaven?" my son continued to ask.
"It's up there," I said, pointing to the sky.
"So you mean Uncle Terry can fly?"

As you can imagine, our trip was filled with these types of questions, and Lewie asked them every day during our short stay.  My Aunt let Lewie pick out a race car from my Uncle Terry's NASCAR collection, and Lewie picked out my Uncle Terry's favorite car--lucky number 10!  Still at the end of our trip, Lewie insisted that the car be left at my aunt's house.  "That's my Uncle Terry's car," he proclaimed, "I can't take it." 

This year, we took lots of pictures of our trip, including my aunt's house and her motor home.  The motor home, sadly, is for sale since she can't envision herself camping with it anymore, and although the house is not on the market, my mom seems to think that it's only a matter of time before my aunt decides to move to a smaller house.  Only time will tell.  In the meantime, Little Lewie insists that we buy the motor home.  I sure wish we had the money to keep the family tradition!

My mom (on the left), my Aunty Irene (my aunt from Delaware), my Aunty Kiki (back) and Aunt Karen

My handsome husband...feeling a little outnumbered by all the women in my family.

Lewie sleeping in the campervan.

Another rare sight.  (Usually he's the first one up.)

Swimming in the pool...

Mason--a friend of the family.  (Lewie loves spending time with her each year.)

Cousin Frankie  (He just turned 13!)

The three kiddos at play...

My Aunt's camper van

My uncle's last name was "Gillette."  (There's an actual Gillette's Castle in Connecticut.)

My Aunty Irene in the campervan.  She made this trip wonderful for us.


Lewie and Frankie chillin out on the side porch.

A much better picture of the two cousins!

Lewie lost his second tooth on this trip.  We think it may be in the pool somewhere...

A view of the field across the street

A last photo of Lewie and me before we leave to go home...
My aunt, in her usual style, made the trip to Delaware wonderful for us.  There was always plenty of yummy food to eat and fun things to do... Her home will always be a "home away from home."  I sure hope she decides to stay here, but if not, we'll always have many wonderful memories of our special visits.  My Uncle Terry, along with this home, will be missed but never forgotten.


  1. I'm so sorry for your loss Annette. It's so much harder now that our kiddo loses a loved one too. I'm glad you had a good trip - your aunt seems like a really special woman :)

  2. That sounds bittersweet. But I'm glad you had a good visit.

  3. I'm glad you had a good trip, despite the sadness. I'm sure it was nice spending time together!

  4. Sweet Lewie... glad the trip went well despite the bittersweet-ness.

  5. That must have been so hard for you my friend. Not only is the loss of a loved one so difficult to soak in, but the changes that come from it like selling the campervan can really be hard as well. It must have been so wonderful for your aunt to have all of you visiting. I am sure Little Lewie brought so much cheer to heart. :) I love the name for the campervan! Very cute! I emailed your work address. I had emailed you a couple of weeks ago. Not sure you got it. Hopefully we can get together soon. Summer is flying by.
    Have a great day my friend!

    Mama Hen


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