Tuesday, September 16, 2014


On Friday, September 12th, 2014, one of God's beautiful angels returned home.

Selfishly, I wanted you to stay with us forever but I find great comfort knowing you are no longer in pain...no more chemo, Mom....no more surgeries.  You are free.  Reunited with your parents and two sisters (including your twin, Aunt Virgie), I know you are already up there in Heaven shopping, talking, laughing, more talking (probably asking St. Peter about his family) and, of course, putting ice cubes in your wine.

Three children, six grandchildren, three daughter-in-laws, two granddogs and a husband of exactly 44 years.  I miss you so much already, Mom.

For those of you that never met my Mom, the worst thing that could be said about Frances Mary Basile Wentink is that, given the chance, she would talk your ear off.  But not in the "listen to me about my life" sort of way...she truly cared, stranger or friend, about who you were, where you were from, and of course if you had any Italian in your heritage. 

She was an old-school Italian Mom and made the best homemade pizza I'll ever have.  She didn't drive but that never slowed her down, even while raising three not-so-angelic boys with my father.  She grew up in Chicago – not a suburb, the city – and public transportation was the way of life.  After marrying, it didn’t matter where the Army moved her and my Dad (Korea, Germany  or the Washington D.C. area), she continued (and loved to) work, shop and run our household; in fact, she probably knew the Springfield, Virginia bus schedule better than anyone.

Very protective of her sons but also strong enough to support/encourage us to fly away to chase our own dreams, even if that meant moving all around the East Coast, out to Texas or even another continent.

Why cancer would feel the need to take someone like that, I'll never understand.  But it serves as a reminder as to how precious each new day is and an opportunity to reflect on whether I'm living my life the way it should be lived, the Fran Wentink way.

My passion for writing has been sidetracked recently.  It’s been a very difficult time for me and my family but the strength my Mom showed in her final months is what I’ll always remember…it’s unlikely she knew what day it was when she passed, but I can’t help but believe that she somehow did know.  Doctors thought various times she was in her final hours but she fought to live and see September 12th – my parents 44th wedding anniversary – so she could spend one more with my Dad by her side.
I look forward to telling stories about my MS again, so please keep visiting my page.

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