Today, June 5, 2020, I want to pay homage to Eileen McBrearty on the 10th anniversary of her death.
She leaves her mark colored by her heritage, Irish on her father’s side and Scotch on her mother’s side. She enjoyed pushing us to the wall, provoking a reaction and exasperating us.
Her sense of responsibility made her demanding of others but she was easily forgiven because of her kind heart, her joie de vivre and her generosity.
People still speak to me about the attachment, friendship and affection they had for her.
Some time after her death a stranger stopped me in front of a store and said, “Madame, I want to offer you my condolences for the death of Madame McBrearty. I would see you together in church and I was struck by her smile. She was a good person.” For me, that comment was evidence that what we radiate influences our world.
To this day friends remember what she represented for them; they remember her tastes in food: French fries, hamburger, seafood, chicken with a good glass of wine. “Why not!” was her response when she was offered a glass of wine.
I believe it was her transparency that called us to love her as she was. A few months ago I met a priest who had worked on a committee with her. He said, “Ah, Eileen, I quite liked her; she knew what she wanted and would push things forward. She had a clear objective, to bring a project to fruition even if it meant upsetting some people.”
Rest in peace, dear Eileen. Thank you for having been part of our life, jarring us out of our routine to see with new eyes and step out of ourselves. Thank you for your love of life and for having left us your “I love.” that still resonates with us.