Army of Mom

So this is how liberty dies ... with thunderous applause.



On Tuesday morning, May 24, 2011, my cousin Dion Cunningham Shark died at Arlington Memorial Hospital. She was only 45. She and I, essentially, grew up together and got in trouble together and had fun together. She married the man of her dreams almost 24 years ago and had two sons that were the center of her life. She was one of the most dedicated moms I've ever met. This photo was taken at my parents' 50th wedding anniversary in 2007. Those are her boys.
This one was taken in 1978 on Western Day. Dion was in the 7th grade, me in the 3rd. It's one of my very favorite pictures of us together. Her mom died when she was in the first grade, but I never sensed a sadness in her at all as we were kids. We just played and got in trouble and goofed off as kids do. I remember one of our favorite things to do was record songs off the radio and we loved the ones that were done like newscasts and they would insert snippets of songs to make the news funny. We recorded those of the most and would play them back and play at Granny's house. We had a clubhouse down by the railroad tracks and occasionally hobos would sleep in our clubhouse. I remember one of 'em leaving a girly magazine there (now, as an adult, I can't imagine the fella meant to leave his whack material, but he was probably drunk and just forgot when he was hopping on the next train to make a stop/slow down by our hideout). I remember running in the fields of Indian Paintbrush with Dion behind Granny's house. I just can't believe she's gone. We only saw each other once a year or so at family gatherings or special occasions, but we chatted on Facebook, the blog or via text messages. I'm going to miss her. Alot.


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