Monday, July 23, 2012


My mama died.  

Alzheimer's disease crept in and caused a progressive mental and physical decline in her health. After four years in assisted living, my dear mom had a stroke last week and passed away a couple of days later. She did not seem to be anxious or in pain; she just stopped breathing and was gone.

My sister took such great care of her. We were all involved, of course, every step of the way, but Alicia had most of the day-to-day responsibility and poured on the love and attention. We were so grateful to the caregivers who worked where Mom lived and to the Hospice staff who directed her care in the last few months. Mom's final days and hours were greatly improved because of the planning that took place prior to the stroke. 

Dementia is no way to live and death is a part of life - but it is so very sad and final. Love and kindness surrounded our family and we had a nice backyard gathering with our children, grandchildren and friends on a sunny day in Reno. We will always have warm memories of our mother.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Shirley was my aunt - my beloved "Tia Shirley" as we say in spanish. I remember her from as early as when she had first married my Tio Jaime. They had come to visit the Ochoa family in Hebbronville, Texas. I can remember thinking how beautiful she was. Then I have memories of her time in Abilene, Texas with her family. I must have been in Junior High School at the time. Later it was Chico (where my wife Karen first met her), and then the Reno/Sparks area.

I will always remember her elegance, her grace, the sharpness of her mind and her incisive (and very charming) way of speaking. I always felt happy being with her. She was the consummate lady and the ever-gracious hostess. She was like a Princess - regal and royal in every way.

We will miss her dearly. She will always claim a part of my heart. Thank you Tia Shirley for all that you gave - to me, to my family, and to so many others.

Love you!

Rene, Karen, and Victor Ochoa
Asheville, North Carolina