The End of an Era (Death of a Brother)

The end of an eraSo yesterday I went to my cousin Victor’s funeral. I had gone to funerals before but this was my first with someone around my age. He was 31 years old.

His younger brother has asked me to be one of the pallbearers the day before. I honestly didn’t know what to do during whole thing (his family had arranged for the viewing and burial on the same day), but I thought “might as well”.

I would later learn that over 100 people showed up to his funeral – people from all his different circle of friends. To me it was a mixed affair; I’m not an emotional personal in terms of grieving for a brother (he’s actually a cousin) who I had known since elementary school. But the whole thing later started sinking in when myself and 5 other family and friends went up to speak about him.

Even though I had planned a 2 minute speech, I ended up improvising 50% of it on the spot. I guess being unscripted and truthful won out in the end.

There were quite a bit of tears from everyone.

Seeing him in that white casket of his was strange. I’m someone who’s not phased by blood, guts, death, weird things, etc. But seeing someone’s body who just 3 weeks ago was talking to you alive and well really brings a lot of emotions. There were some of his friends who couldn’t even look at him.

I found myself silently talking to “him” as I was carrying him casket (with 5 others) towards the burial grounds. Strange huh? It made perfect sense then.

It brought a lot of family members into town who I otherwise would never see. One cousin came I had not seen in 17 years. There was also a lot of peace among those who otherwise would be bickering with each other.

After the ceremony and lunch at a buffet, myself and another cousin (Alex)andria swung around and visited Victor again when everyone had left already. Like during the ceremony, I was lost for words. I could only think about we were just getting to know each other better (our hangouts had only be occasional up until a month ago). There was a good 10 minutes of silence between myself and Alex only interrupted with the occasional talk to Victor.

I plan on visiting him occasionally whenever I can – I feel that the universe decided that he should be gone before I got to really know him.

As a side note; whenever all the people were moving from the chapel to the cemetery, the train of cars stretched close to a mile long. If that doesn’t give any indication of who he was a man, I don’t what does.

Below is one of his favorite songs. We were planning of playing this along with some others in a powerpoint during the service but alas the projector and computer never came. But here it is. Quite appropriate!

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