Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day - May 26, 2008

Memorial Day is a day dedicated to honor our departed family members and friends. My family has a plot at the Newcastle Cemetary in Placer County where my roots are firmly established.

My parents had a fruit orchard in Newcastle and this is where I was born and grew up. I have many fond memories of spending my youth in this area, attended both grammar and high school in Auburn, and Sierra College in Rocklin, playing sports with many childhood friends, attending the local Buddhist Church in Penryn, and best of all, meeting and dating Patti back in 1964 on our very first date. We dated for 4 years before we got married in 1968.

This Memorial Day had special significance since I honored Patti along with my mom and dad, grand-parents and other long departed relatives. I have not yet placed her ashes in our family plot where space is reserved for both she and I. I want to keep her ashes at home for awhile until I'm ready to do so. There is no hurry and who knows, I may want to have my ashes buried with her's when the time comes.

I want to take you on our tour of this beautiful cemetary and show you my family plot, the Buddhist Memorial Day ceremony, and my family members who attended today's ceremony.

Note: To view enlarged photo, mouse over picture and click

Our minister conducting a short sermon

Placing flowers in front of the Masuda Family gravestone. On the front-side are the names of my grandparents. On the back-side are the names of my parents, uncle and aunt. Patti's name and ultimately mine will be engraved on the granite gravestone, as well as my brother Ed and wife Terrie. It is a Buddhist custom that the sons and their wives will be buried with their parents.

A view of the Japanese family section of the Newcastle Cemetary

A close-up view of table where burning incense and religious symbols are placed. During the ceremony, we line up and place incense into a burning bowl and say our "gassho", a quiet acknowledgement to Buddha.

Standing with my sisters - Yuki, Emi, and brother Ed

Emi's family - Tiana, Lourdes, Tod, Talia, Emi and dog- Kieko

Ed's family - Terri, Mariko, and Ed

Emi's family in front of her husband Wilfred grave. He passed away in 2002.

My friends Audrey and Dick Hastings joined me on this occassion

Hoorah! The sunflower seeds that my friend Dawn provided at Patti's Memorial Service has finally sprouted. I will transplant these sprouts into the ground in a few days and watch it grow over the summer.

Oh heart, if one should say to you
that the soul perishes like the body,
answer that the flower withers,
but the seeds remains.
~Kablil Gibran

Patti's spirit will always remain in our hearts

1 comment:

dAwN said...

Hi Geno...that was a nice post...I liked the photos in black and white for the post as well....Did you work in the fruit orchard as a child?
I didnt realize that there would be a separate area in the cemetery for Japanese. You will know what to do with Pattis ashes when it is hurry