Saturday, November 13, 2010

Obituary of Anna G. Domelle (1920 - 2010)

Yesterday my grandmother passed away. She made it to the ripe old age of 90 and passed peacefully, at home, in her sleep.

In the past weeks, several of my posts have been transcriptions and images of obituaries that were in my grandmother's possession. Now today, I do my genealogist duty, and sadly post hers. She has become part of the collection.

From the 13-Nov-2010 Harrisburg, PA newspaper, The Patriot News:

Anna G. Domelle MILLERSBURG - Anna G. Domelle, 90, passed away Friday at her home. She was pre-deceased by a son, Stephen, 1999. Surviving are her husband of 68 years, William, two daughters, Deborah Kleylein, Philadelphia and Rebecca Lucas, Lykens; 5 Grandchildren, 7 Great Grandchildren. Private services will be held at the convenience of the family. Dimon Funeral Homes, Inc., Tower City has charge of arrangements.

(Reading this drives home to me that you can't always take an obituary as gospel truth. In seeing this for my own close family, I realize the home towns listed are really just generalizations and there is a typo in one of the numbers - there are really 9 grandchildren, not 5. I will read obituaries in the future with better-educated eyes, knowing now that some distraught family member or close friend is trying to think of everyone's names and where they live, and the right number of kids.)

I wrote a blog post about my grandmother back in 2009, listing a few of my favorite memories. In the past few years, Alzheimer's took hold of her mind and that along with physical pain made it very hard for her. So most of all right now, I feel utter relief for her that she is no longer suffering. She's free from it all! My sadness now is reserved for those left behind - my grandpa, and my mom and aunt. It's their pain that breaks my heart.

My grandmother was born in the Finger Lakes region of New York. She was one of 10 children born to William Homer MIX and Cornelia AKINS MIX. She is the last of them to pass away, so all the Mix kids are gone now.

There was not a lot of money to go around when she was growing up, but she always spoke fondly of the region up there - she loved the hills and the landscape in that area. She used to tell me that she learned to not take sugar in her coffee because they didn't have sugar all the time - it was a luxury item. I grew up pouring most of the sugar bowl over my breakfast cereal every day, never thinking for an instant that there wasn't more to refill it.

She married my grandfather in 1942 - another era!! Just think how much everything has changed in the world since then!! And they stayed married all this time.

My grandparents had 3 children, my Uncle Steve, my mom, and my Aunt Becky. Sadly, my Uncle Steve passed away in 1999. I think that pain stayed with my grandma, fresh and unhealed, for all these years.

Here is one of my absolute favorite pictures of her - taken in on a sunny May day in 1947 with her newborn baby Stephen. Isn't she beautiful? :-)

She's 27 years old in this picture, but I swear she could be a teenager.

And here to the left is a picture of my grandma and grandpa with me - isn't it great how babies make grown men act silly?

My dad posted a great quote yesterday:

"When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure." --Unknown

I will love my grandma always, I will miss her for the rest of my life, and I will keep her with me, in my heart and mind always. She was a wonderful person, and most of all to me, she was a wonderful grandmother. I'm grateful to have had her in my life, and she is part of who I am today.


  1. Leah, This was a very nice tribute to your grandmother. She was of the same era as my mother, b. 1919, but died at 70. So your grandmother lived a nice long life, and her husband is still living, amazing. Loved the picture of you as a baby. I'm sorry for your loss and thanks for sharing this.

  2. My condolences on the loss of your grandmother. From what you have written, she had a rich and full life. And she was a beauty!

  3. Leah, I'm sorry for the loss to you and and your grandmother's family - a double loss from both Alzheimer's and now death. I love the first photo of her and the one with Stephen. It's wonderful that she lived so long and that you have good memories of her. This was a touching tribute to a beautiful lady. Blessings to you and your family.

  4. What a beautiful tribute to a beautiful woman. You were certainly blessed to have her in your life.

  5. That was a lovely tribute, sweetie!! mommy

  6. What a wonderful write up Leah!!

  7. Leah, my condolences on the loss of your grandmother. This is a very loving tribute to a beautiful woman.

  8. I offer my deepest sympathy to you and your family. This is a lovely tribute.

  9. Thanks everyone for your kinds words and thoughts! I appreciate every single one of them!

  10. Leah, I am so sorry for the loss of your grandmother. You have written a beautiful tribute.

  11. Hi, Leah! I ran across this post while looking up my Mix family and when I saw your grandmother's photo I amazed, she looks just like my mom and her sisters. Beautiful women. I haven't had time to do research but when I do I google a bit. I would love to share a photo and some info. My grandmother was Mabel Ethel Mix Nickerson.

    1. Well hello there! I would love to exchange some photos and info! My email is leahkleylein (at) gmail dot com.

  12. Great, thanks! I just saw your response and sent an email.

  13. Hi my great grandma was Mabel Ethel Mix Nickerson. My name is Leanna and I've trying to gather information on my family. Please feel free to contact me