Thank you so much for your kind words about Tommy. His funeral was yesterday. Rich's mother gave the eulogy. I don't know how she had the strength to do that, but she did and it was just so beautiful.
She told of when she went through nursing school and saw so many babies born with hydrocephalus and about how terrible a condition it was. Later when she started having babies of her own, she would say a prayer each time for a healthy baby. And if the baby couldn't be healthy, they could have a heart problem or breathing problem...anything but hydrocephalus. She had 4 healthy babies and then, when she was a little bit wiser and older, came Tommy. He was born not only with hydrocephalus, but also blind and with cerebal palsy. She was angry at God, how cruel to put so many problems on one little baby. But she didn't know his plan. She, a quiet stay-at-home mom, reached out to get help. So many people helped her and growing family.
Through the years, Tommy would always bring out the best in people. Rich's mother said that people would always ask her about her son. She would reply "which son?" since she has 7. They would stumble through trying to describe Tommy and she would say "Oh you mean Tommy, my retarded son." No one ever liked to say "retarded".
She said that more than anything, Tommy taught her other children patience and tolerance and sensitivity.
And then she said in the sweetest voice goodbye to her Tommy. And then she said his word, "Bong bong".
It was so moving and so beautiful.
So now we are going to go on living our lives, forever touched by Tommy's love. We'll carry his love onto others and in that way he will live on.
Thank you for your prayers and thoughts. Here is a tribute that I made for Tommy. This played during the wake on Friday. It's a large file that plays best on Windows Media Player.