The Sharon Clough Foundation Hosts
The 4th Annual Sharon Clough Memorial Golf Tournament Against Lung
Saturday June TBD, 2014
My Mother's Eulogy
68 years ago the world became a better place when Sharon
Clough was born to Lois and Colonel Vincent Witter. She is the eldest of 5 siblings that includes Deborah, Beverly, Mike, and Andrew. She adored her parents and she never got over their passing. She talked of them often, and it always brought a smile to her face, because family was the most important thing in my mom's life. She was always reminding my brothers and I of this.
She enjoyed the family reunions that we never missed, and she looked forward to seeing Aunt Bettie. She also looked forward to her sisters Deb and Bev coming to our house and the games that they would play. My mom loved to play scrabble with my Aunts, and I would always ended up playing. I eventually ended up beating my Aunt Deb who always cheated in a futile attempt to beat me. She spoke to her siblings often, in fact she was on the
phone a lot because so many people called my mom, and she always wanted to stay in contact with everyone. She also enjoyed going to the Cape to see my uncle Andy, and she loved the beach. She loved the beach and ocean sounds so much that when they retired to Florida my dad tried to get a place on the golf course but my mom was having none of it. She told him the only way they were going was if they were on the beach.
She enjoyed going to the Cape Code to see my uncle's daughter Jesse whom she would tell everyone that Jesse got her good looks from her. This has been a running joke because if you look at Jesse she looks nothing like my mother. When my mother was in the ICU and Jesse came to see her, although she couldn't speak, she put her hand to her mask as if to say you look just like me. And of course she enjoyed getting back to Vermont to see her sisters and brother Mike. I attended Middlebury College and my parents visted me often and we would have mini family reunions where everyone would reminisce about old times, or talk about what the children were doing. At these events there was always a lot of laughter. My mom had a good sense of humor and she could make you laugh. Mrs. Davis pointed out that my mom was a practical jokster at work, but more than that she taught her how to laugh. I know what you are all thinking, Mrs. Davis doesn't a sense of humor.
Laughter was just one of my mom's many gifts. She was also kind, gentle, loving and she included everyone. For instance, she would write the hockey articles for the paper and she tried to work in every kids name, because she knew that it would light up that child's and the their parents day.
My mom met my dad when she was 16 years old when she was set up on a blind date. She has told me often that she couldn't wait for my daughters to start dating. More than that she looked forward to Alexis and Mady getting married. But we all know that the likelihood of my daughters dating before the age 40 is slim. Both my mother and my father attended the University of NH and my mom studied business.
They later married and had 3 children but I was the last. My brothers always told me I was adopted but my mom would always put her arm around me and tell me not to listen to them, that I was a mistake but the best mistake she and my dad ever made. Oh did that light my brothers smile up, now they could use the adopted or mistake version of the story.
She later returned to the work force at Heidleburg Harris, as an administrative assistant. In recounting the stories of her lfe it was amazing for me to hear how my mom did just about everything for her boss, including balance his check book. She was asked why would she do that because it was not apart of her job and the answer is always because that is who she was. She would do anything for anyone, and she would do anything for her children. Like set my brother Mike up on dates in high school. This was always amusing to me because some of the ladies were not that attractive, but she would always tell him that they had a great personality. To this day I am not sure how she did what she did. She got us kids ready for school, she went to work, she took us to practice, she cooked dinner, she did errands ect - she did it all and she never seemed to tire. I have a hard time with 2 kids getting them dressed, off to school, and to sporting events. I am exhausted. To me and many she was supermom. But most of all she was a hockey mom, my hockey mom. A recent post on her facebook page from Chris Theriault described her as the BEST HOCKEY MOM. You see hockey was a large part of my family's life, and it was a large part of my life.
She loved hockey and she loved watching her son's play. Some of her son's played more than other. For instance, my brother Steve spent much of his time in the penalty box and chatting with other players. My mom would be in the stands telling the other parents, he's just asking them how their parents are doing. As a child playing, Mrs. Davis reminded me that when all the other kids where hiding from their parents waving to them, I would wave always wave back to her. Everytime I stepped onto the ice, I would always find where my mom was sitting in the stands and wave to her. I continued this when I played at Middlebury. If I scored a big goal, I would pick the puck up and throw
it to her in stands, because she was such a big part of my life and it was my way of saying thank you.
My mom was a big part of everyones life. Since her passing my brother Steve's friends have all written on her facebook page about how influential she was in their tennage years. John Kenyon wrote that my mom was a great part of his teenage years and her kindness and love will always be with him. Someone else wrote that she was an amazing person and that he held my mom and my dad in such high regard, just as my brother's and I do. A colleague of mine wrote me to me and told me that when her husband learned of my mom's passing he commented " You mean that wonderful lady I met at your graduation?". That is the impact my mom had on your life even if you met her for 5 minutes.
She went out of her way for anyone and everyone. She put herself second and she took care of everyone else first. To many she was like a second mom. To most she was not Mrs. Clough, she was Mrs. C, or Cluffy's mom. My mom told my brother that life was not easy and she was right. Life is about peaks and valleys, but it is the valleys that define who we are, because that is when we learn the most about ourselves. My mom had many medical problems including diabetes and heart disease and she fought these illness, and when she was diagnosed with lung cancer she fought this too. She taught us to be fighters and to never give up, and that we could do anything that we set our minds to do. My mom and dad also taught us to do a good job at whatever we did, even if it was dishing washing at Molly Malones.
My mother never gave up in her fight against lung cancer, she fought until the very end. In fact, as she always did she put herself second and tried to console everyone else when they were having a hard time. That is just who she was, and I never once heard her complain. She even kept her sense of humor right up until the very end. Before she died she spoke to me and asked me to promise her a few things. First, that I would take care of her during this illness and I that I would not let her suffer. Although I could not fix this problem, I know she did not suffer. Second, she made me promise that I would take care of my brothers and my dad. I am fairly certain she had this conversation with both of them too because family meant everything to her.
Remember, my mom is in a better place now and she would not want you to shed tears for her after today, she would want you to go on with your lives and be happy. She was a spiritual person who believed that god had a plan for her, although at this time it is very very difficult for me to comprehend this. She believed in the afterlife and now she is reunited with her parents, my dad's mom Christine, Uncle Rupert, and Aunt Bette. She is looking down on all of us with a big smile on her face and a margarita in the other hand. On the day she died a little sparrow came to the window and just looked in the room for about 20 minutes. My mother loved feeding the birds and we all think it was a sign, and I personally think it was my uncle Rupert coming to check on her before she departed.
Our lives will go on, it will be a different life without her but our lives will go on. If she were here she would tell you
this. Our family will bond together as they always have and we will get through this. We have another guardin angel to look after us. Your little princess's will always know what a great nana you were.
It was a privilege and and an honor to be your son. I, and many others, am a better person for having known you. I love you with all of my heart now and forever.