Family Circle 14

A family history site: Chasing My Own Tale

Sentimental Sunday: Our Angel, Tracy

Oh death, where is thy sting!

I’m having an especially wonderful Easter week. Friday night, my family and I watched the new movie, “Heaven is For Real”. Last night, we watched “God is Not Dead”, and today – an especially poignant experience.

I’ve been going to the Find A Grave website for more than a month now. After volunteering as a contributor, I’ve found that I really enjoyed working with this website. My job is to go to a local cemetery and find the decedent’s grave. Once found I clear any leaves, etc. and photograph the headstone with my Iphone. At home, I upload the photo to the website. I volunteer by agreeing to photograph in a timely manner; loved ones make picture requests who cannot go to the cemetery such as  if they live far away.

The decedent has a web page created  in their name. People can list their surviving family members, add virtual flowers, upload pictures of the decedent, and even add obituaries.

There are 115 million grave records online on this site. I’ve searched a few family names and have found there’s lots of work to do. For some reason, today I decided to search my daughter’s name who passed away in 1976, and lo and behold, it was there! Some dear soul walked through Westminster Memorial Cemetery and photographed the “baby section”. They then went to the trouble of entering all the data onto the website. I’m so thankful for volunteers like this kind person.

To already see Tracy’s headstone online shocked me, but it made my heart swell in appreciation. To have watched the two inspirational movies, then to find this was truly special. Tracy Christine Young was born May 20, 1975 in Payson, Utah and died January 29, 1976 in Salt Lake City, Utah. She was 8 months old when she died. She’s buried in Westminster, Orange County, California. Any time one of us – particularly our daughters on their way to Disneyland – are in the area, we visit her first.

Although Tracy would be nearly 39 years old now, she is not forgotten. In fact, her name continues on. Both of our daughters named their own daughters either her first or middle name. Every time I think of that, I am awed by the knowledge that she was and is very much a part of our family. I am filled with wonder when I recall the Blessing she received at the hands of her father; that she was to be a “Spirit Sister to Those Yet to Come”. That sounded so odd at the time, but now I know what it means. I believe she participated in preparing her siblings for life in this world, and they have a unique relationship with her because of it.

So, I say…”Death, Where Is Thy Sting?”

Families are forever. Love is forever.

 

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