In Loving Memory

My niece has been playing soccer for several years now. My sister’s father and mother in law, my niece’s grandparents, would come to her games every weekend to watch and cheer her on.
On Friday morning, after a long and rough battle with cancer, my niece’s grandfather passed away. My niece was devastated. She had a game the following afternoon. I got a text message from my sister that night.
“S has a game tomorrow. They’re going to dedicate the game to her grandpa.”
My family went to watch the game. We arrived a few minutes late. My sister told me that before the game started, the team did a chant and then both teams had a moment of silence in honor of my niece’s grandpa.
I was in awe of my sister’s mother in law, who had come just a day after the love of her life had passed away, to cheer her granddaughter on, just like she had done with her husband weekend after weekend.
The game was amazing– they won the game 4-0. After the game was over, my niece’s grandma ran over to the sideline to give the girl’s high fives. As she walked away, the entire team ran over to her and wrapped their arms around her. She held them tightly and told them how much her husband loved to watch them play. Everyone stood on the sidelines, watching this most wonderful, heartbreaking moment. Some had tears in their eyes. Some had the biggest smiles on their faces.
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I was completely blown away by the kindness and compassion these young girls showed to a woman who had just lost the love of her life to cancer and also to their teammate, my niece. It was one of the most touching moments I’ve witnessed in my life.
Rest in peace, Dennis. It was an honor to know you.

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