Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Levaya Speech - Glen Holman

Yartzheit is next Tuesday.
This is the loose draft of the hesped that I gave at the levaya at JFK:

Nechama was born 11 years ago next week. She was special from birth.
Somehow she inspired people. She had a special charm that was like a magnet.
She lived with this disease for 6 years and never complained.
She always had a smile on her face. Every nurse or doctor who she ever met remembered her even years later.
In general because of the severity of her condition, nurses would shy away
from other kids with her illness. Yesterday, 2 nurses wanted to take care of her so badly, that the one who lost actually went home. Over the past 4 weeks, we saw open miracles. Undisputable even by the most senior doctors. No child, I believe no person, had ever survived through what she had. Never. But Nechama was a special person; she loved life and wasn't going to give it up without a fight.
From the age of 2, she never wore pants.She had an amazing memory even remembering little details. She was very mothering always taking care of the kids. She inspired people through her love of life. Through the years, she suffered with dozens of hospital visits and their associated treatment, hundreds of false alarms and issues. She never complained. She gave chizuk to everyone around her. The Hatzalah men were so nispoel by her.
Everyone knows that she looked forward to Camp Simcha Special for the year.
She counted the days and this year, her big sister from Chai Lifeline was her counselor. Because she was sick, she missed the first 2 days and was driven by ambulance after only 24 hours at camp.Even when I told her that she would not be going to camp, she didn't complain.
When Rabbi Stein was sick, she wrote him a letter of chizuk on how to deal with
living with an illness. The hundreds of people who davened for her was a testimony to how many people she touched. Her smile, her warmth, her simchas hachaim, her love of life. She inspired others to appreciate life. Nechama loved to play teacher almost every day. She loved to give over and share. Inspired by her school.

When my wife or I were on errands, Nechama would call because she needed us to
get her something. But first she would ask where we were. If what she needed was in a different store, she wouldn't even tell us what it was so we wouldn't have to make an extra stop.

When she was first diagnosed, as I read through the siddur and could not understand
the chesed that is such a central theme. Over the last 6 years and even more so over
the last several weeks, we saw the chesed from both above and from below.
There wasn't a practical need that wasn't filled whether it be physical, emotional and spiritual.

There wasn't a thing that we didn't try from the bizarre to the mundane.
Really, it is only because of the davening, chesed and emunah that carried us through. You can access the audio via this link:
Glen Holman's Hesped for nechama Liba Holman A'H
The other hespedim can be accessed via the links section to the right.


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