With the death over the weekend of my Uncle Ralph Moll, I now have one uncle left and two aunts. My Uncle Ralph is now in heaven after passing away two days after his 89th birthday.
My mother's family left a huge imprint on my life. They have a story that would match any of the Little House on the Prairie books with drama, excitement, family, hard times, survival and love. I didn't always appreciate the sibling relationships that existed with them.
Their parents died young while they were living on a farm in the Thumb of Michigan when many were still young kids. The older ones including my mom kept the family together through a lot of tough times and going without. I know that it was slog, mixed in with some good times.
Uncle Ralph was part of the group and one of the men that I looked up to as a role model on what it meant to be a man.
He had three sons and a daughter. His son Roger was killed during the Vietnam war.
I thank God for my aunts and uncles. They weren't perfect, but they provided a framework for life.
Uncle Ralph now joins my mom and the others in the heavenly stands cheering on those of us still left here on earth.