Home > life in pictures, visiting > a death in the family

a death in the family

September 23, 1998 Leave a comment Go to comments

I have some sad news: Nancy’s dog Jesse passed away today, after surgery for a very serious cancer. When I was last in Iowa, two weeks ago for Labor Day, she was still happy and playful, but she did look a bit tired and showed her age (12 1/2). In the last week or so, though, Nancy told me that Jess had been having trouble with her digestion, and in the last few days had had some trouble with the stairs. She took her in to the vet, who found a large, fast-growing tumor obstructing her intestines. I guess Jesse was just not strong enough for the surgery, and she died.

This really is a death in the family. Nancy’s had Jesse for as long as I’ve known her. It’s hard for me to even picture Nancy in my mind without Jesse right beside her. I’m flying back this Friday to spend the weekend to help Nancy through this, but also to get her support as well. We were going to make a big adventure road trip out of the move from Iowa to California, with Nancy and Jesse and I in the car pulling a UHaul, and go play on the beach and go for hikes in the redwoods. I’m glad I got to spend the time with Jess that I did in my couple of trips to Iowa this year. But it’s especially hard for Nancy, for whom Jess had been a constant companion over more than ten years of different jobs, different boyfrends, and going back to school.


I’m very glad that my family got to meet Jesse over Labor Day, and that she got a chance to meet them, and to play and run around outside on the farm. Jesse had a long and happy life, and one thing that has become very clear to me is how loved Jesse was by so many people. And that’s a wonderful thing to be able to say about anyone.

Nancy’s cousin Chris said it very well: “She really is a good and loving, kind soul. She’ll truly be missed in her material form, though I have to confess that I firmly believe that what is of the Spirit goes on forverer, and that in my book includes Jesse.”

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