Thursday 13 May 1982
Ada Kuehner, 1921-2003, “Mommy” to Josephine and the five girls who loved Josephine.

Today Josephine was put to rest, to spare her more pain and discomfort. We all feel, I think, that she earned the right to an easy departure, for growing up with the family as a companion, playmate, and guardian, she lived a full life.

I always felt she was unusually bright (like all my girls), and had a special personality, a sense of humor, as in the “karate shots” she would give one from the rear, or her playful “hat-snatching attacks” in which she would pull the girls stocking-caps off, and an independence of personality, as she took every chance to go exploring.

She would always “Smile for Mommy” and look up at the kitchen window when something embarrassing happened while she was outside, such as toppling over in her effort to watch the path of an airplane across the sky, or missing her footing as she jumped up onto the top of her doghouse.

I sympathized with her bewilderment as a reluctant mother, but felt awed by her un-Josephine-like behavior when a stranger came close to her brood.

She never could be fooled into eating a bit of lettuce, no matter how well hidden in her dinner.

Later, she tolerated the new puppy Spunky’s exuberance, and if she was hurt by our bringing in another pet, she hid her feelings pretty well. My favorite memory of her is of her standing beside Spunky on a nearby street corner, as if cautioning her to look both ways before crossing the street. She seemed like a patient nanny.

This is not a very fine eulogy, as I’m not always good at expressing my love, but I wish for her, as I do for any of my near and dear: “Rest in peace – you earned it.”