She was the last of the generation. A remnant of my grandma's cohort, she was 6 years younger than my grandma. They were the only two who lived north of the Mason-Dixon line, she settling in Chicago and my family in Michigan. Out of my grandma's 8 siblings, she was the one I knew the best.
As a child, we would go to her house every year for Thanksgiving, making the 4 hour trek to Northbrook. Her corn pudding was wonderful. I learned to make "Magic Marshmallow Puffs" at her house. Wine was plentiful as was the food.
I would occasionally be sent to Chicago to visit her alone, taking either the train or Greyhound. We touristed the town...boat tours, Sears Tower, the beach along Lakeshore Drive. We would go to Marshall Field's and window shop. Play tennis and then stop for ice cream. Road trips to Great America and to Wisconsin.
I last saw her a few years ago at Em's funeral. She looked nothing like the vibrant woman in my memories. A LOL, somewhat cranky and confused as to why the family has gathered again. Alzheimer's is a cruel disease.
She's been dwindling the last few months, with the last couple of weeks being a mercifully quick decline. May she rest in peace.