I learned today that my maternal grandma's cousin Carol Poole passed away yesterday. Carol was the daughter of Elsie Craddock, one of my great-grandma Edna's sisters. I can't recall having met Carol in person (though I may have when I was younger), but we connected on Facebook several years ago. Since then, I've chatted with her many times about our shared ancestors. She was a huge supporter of my genealogy research business, and was my first paying customer. She encouraged me over and over again when I got down on myself, or doubted my research skills. She reminded me that God gave me the talent and desire to do this, and that with His help, I would be successful at it. Now, a year and a half later, I've been blessed with the opportunity to research my own clients, as well as those found by Legacy Tree Genealogists, and helped over a dozen different families learn more about their ancestry, including helping a recent client find and connect with her birth family. I'm going to miss sharing my Craddock discoveries with her, or reading her comments about my latest blog post.
She loved her family, and constantly created beautiful scrapbook pages for both her kids and grandkids, as well as for extended family. I have one of her creations hanging on the wall in my library, with baby pictures of my grandpa, my dad, me, and my oldest son. Below are some of the pages she made of herself with her kids and grandkids.
In my mind, she really exemplified these words from Shakespeare's Hamlet:
Those friends thou hast, and their adoption tried,
Grapple them unto thy soul with hoops of steel,
God be with you till we meet again, Carol.