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On 23 Nov 1963 President Kennedy was assassinated. 5 days later on Thanksgiving morning my little sister Karen Louise  [Sept 8 1953 - Nov 28 1963]passed away from a brain tumor.

It has been 56 Thanksgivings ago. It took nearly a decade of thanksgivings for me to see them in gratitude and true thanksgiving, rather than as a holiday that my little sister no longer would be with us.

Christmas' were really hard too. As were her birthdays. Easters, Halloween, our siblings birthdays, Mom & Dad's birthdays and wedding anniversaries.

Karen brought a lot to the table in our home. She and I fought like most siblings do. She was a *dirty* fighter too ~ she would get me pinned down and then tickle me until I wet my pants. 😷

I once heard Mom telling the neighbor that Iggy and Karen were like two peas in the same pod. We would finish each others sentences, we were always together -arm in arm. She loved pedal pushers and I loathed them. Karen would initiate playing with others and if the little kid next door wanted our toys, she would just give it to them! I would run to Mom so she could get it back, and Mom would say - Give it time, they will put the toy down and then you can get it back. Karen instinctively knew this - how? She was 15 months younger than me, so how did she gain this knowledge?

Karen also knew that she would die. After her brain surgery, she talked about Jesus and the Angels that were always surrounding Him and us. I was too young to understand that she was trying to ease the road for me, us. She was saying goodbye and doing her level best as a loving10 year old to let me, us, know that she was going to be okay. That she was going to be living with Jesus and Heavenly Father and all the Greats and Grands.

The hole in my universe that ripped open the day she passed away is still there. For years and years I never thought the rawness would ease up. It has. Don't know exactly when the jaggedness smoothed out but it has. 56 years later it is a hole, a smoothed edged hole.

In those 56 years there have been so many more of my family members who have passed away. They are there with Karen and the Greats, Grands, family members, Jesus and Heavenly Father.

Karen was 10 when she passed. The proxy ordinances of baptism, confirmation, and sealing to our parents have been done. In June of 2001 I was sealed to our parents. The eternal link to my little sister and all my kindred dead is solid and it is now my responsibility to live my life in accordance to the gospel and obey the covenants I made with Heavenly Father and I will be joined with my eternal family.

On all of these holidays the knowledge of the Plan of Salvation brings me peace.

Edited by Iggy

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