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Monday, December 26, 2005

In Memorium

May Chong 1929-2005

My grandmother May Chong passed away on Thursday morning after a hard year health-wise. I was there to see her the day before and was a few hours too late when I went to visit on the day she died.

I am grateful in some ways, that it happened while I was home and I got to see her, and that my brother and I were there to wait with mum until the undertakers took her body away. I'm grateful that she enabled us all to be together on Christmas, instead of four of us being at work.

I wish that she had seen one more Christmas, had the shark fin soup she was so looking forward to, opened the present I gave her when I went to visit. I wish that the funeral wasn't tomorrow so that my brother, sister and I could say a proper goodbye.

May was a woman who grew up in wartime China and then had her life uprooted to move to a foreign land, tongue and culture in New Zealand. After my grandfather had a fatal heart attack at only 39 years old, she continued to work extremely hard to raise her four children alone. She managed to learn some English on top of everything else. Her family were the only Chinese in the small Taranaki town.

I will miss her and remember her as a tiny, strong-willed, hard-working, warm-hearted woman with a great love for her children, grandchildren and shoes!

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