This is how I remember my Uncle Bobby. He was so awesome. I’m glad to have this picture of us and I treasure it. I’m overcome with emotion when I look at it as he passed away on the 22nd of November 2010. His birthday was 28th of November and he was born in the year 1924. He was married to my sweet Aunt Mary for 64 years.
Bob Perryman was my dad’s brother but he was like a father to me when I was a kid. My own parents drank heavily and so he and Aunt Mary were part of the sane part of those who shaped my life. He laughed a lot and I loved that about him. He always had a joke. Then he would laugh so hard at his own jokes that you’d laugh too no matter how bad the telling.
He loved to eat and he loved that blue shirt. He wore suspenders and a belt. He was a very good looking man. This photo was taken in the last two years. We all went up to enjoy the day–at The Mountain House. I love it there. My best childhood memories are there—and my cousins remember it–and his children remember especially.
He watched my daughter in law and gave her some advice on target shooting. I’m glad he met her. He was at their wedding. He loved everyone and he loved her when they met cause he loved me, and my sons, and my husband, and especially his kids.
Aunt Mary cared for Uncle Bob right up to the very end. Uncle Bob had parkinson’s disease. Aunt Mary is strong, brave, and my hero.
He came to my 50th birthday party and he ate some more, wore his suspenders, wore his belt. He loves hot dogs and chocolate ice cream. For my birthday that year, he and Aunt Mary gave me a Moravian blessing framed beautiful. It goes:
Come Lord Jesus our guest to be and bless these gifts bestowed by thee. Bless our loved ones everywhere and keep them in they loving care.
We’ve said that blessing at every family get together and this was no different except they gifted to me a pretty framed piece of my very own. They gave me keys to The Mountain House and Aunt Mary gave me some of her cross stitch pieces. Uncle Bob loved Aunt Mary’s cross stitch. I do too.
Uncle Bobby lived in a craftsman home on Devonshire street with his wife–and they lived there for over 50 years. Uncle Bobby liked to fly an American flag for the soldiers cause he was a Marine. He lost his twin brother during a battle in WW2. Uncle Bobby was my last living blood relative from that generation. It was the best generation there ever was.
He lived at 119 Devonshire street for as long as I can remember which is all my life and it was the house my great uncle had built. It had never been in any family but ours. We sat on the stoop and ate watermelon. We had grilled cheese for lunch. Aunt Mary made gallons of Coolade and Uncle Bob came home from his job at RJ Reynolds tobacco company. He was the head electrician. And Uncle Bob could fix anything.
And they were so happy and Aunt Mary was so good to Uncle Bob. Uncle Bob raised two twin boys and a daughter he adored in this house. He made memories for his nieces and nephews who adored him.
He gave me his tool chest from his days at RJ Reynolds, and some of his tools, and I ask for his thermos–that he carried to work all the days that he rode to the center of town and went to work to care for his family.
And Uncle Bob and Aunt Mary were very smart. They had taken care of his mom, her mom, and my great aunt and uncle. So when they knew Uncle Bob was getting on with Parkinson’s–they cleaned out their home–so their kids would not have to–and they moved to a nice retirement place. They showed me their name on the door–and I was at peace that they had settled their belongings and looked so happy.
It was the week they were moving and they showed me where they were gonna live–and they were so proud.
My oldest and Uncle Bob kept pace and talked cause Uncle Bob loved my kids. And my kids loved Uncle Bob and Aunt Mary is the most awesome aunt in the world.
So in the last couple of weeks Uncle Bobby got real sick and it was time to go to Hospice.
I went to hospice one night not too long ago—no one was there but he and I. The nurse said—Bob, do you know you have company–and Uncle Bobby smiled and said—why yes, it’s little Anna Marie—and I cired softly.
I sang him some songs, I said the Lord’s prayer, I prayed with him. I told him about his mansion in heaven. I ask him to tell my brother who is already there–and my mom–and my dad—that I said hello. And Uncle Bob—ask me to ask my youngest son if he would trim the limbs at The Mountain House—and I said we would.
I told him I loved him and he said he loved me too. I wanted to say the 23 rd psalm but I could not remember it all. His was so weak that he could not help me remember but his lips moved and then her tried to whistle–he was always whistling a very happy tune.
The last I remember of him on my last visit—Aunt Mary bent to kiss him—and he was so weak—had not eaten in a week—had not responded in awhile—-but his lips made the kissing sound and he kissed his wife goodnight. That is my last memory of my sweet Uncle Bobby.
The 23rd Psalm:
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.
I love you Uncle Bobby and Aunt Mary
And Uncle Bobby loved The Mountain House, and my family—and especially his children and Aunt Mary.