Another hero of mine is my Grandma Daisy. I have more memories of her than perhaps anyone else in my life. She was my world for a very long time.
Grandma held the family together. She was rather short and unassuming, my grandfather was over 6ft and rather intimidating. However, the people who knew them understood that it was Grandma was the one you didn't want to mess with! She wasn't mean or cruel but the spoke what she thought clearly and (seemingly) without hesitation.
I loved to listen to the stories of her childhood--I wish I knew more of them. She had wanted to be a doctor but couldn't go to school (I think it had to do with $). She learned all she could on her own and she took care of all of us. She was the family matriarch. When she died, our family fell apart without her--she was our glue.
She was a woman of great strength--physically, mentally, and spiritually. She didn't attend church because she didn't like the pretense of it--folks keeping watch over who was or was not there on Sundays, pretending on Sundays that life was grand while their lives were falling apart during the week. She was intelligent and loving. She worked hard when they had the farm and when they left the farm and bought the cafe in Americus--she worked equally as hard. Amazingly she still found the time and energy to grow a huge flower garden and food garden as well.
She lived with integrity and helped everyone she could. I don't think there was a fake bone in her body. She made my mother strong and both of them taught me to be strong as well.
She died trying to help someone else. As my grandparents were driving home one evening there were big boxes in the middle of the road. They pulled over so she and Grandpa could move the boxes and prevent someone from getting in an accident. Ironically enough, a woman driving too fast and not paying attention to the road hit my grandmother, sending her soaring through the air and landing in a field. She was dead before they could get her to the hospital. It was very hard to lose her. I saw her nearly everyday of my life and then she was suddenly gone.
However, there are times that I feel her presence with me. About 15 years ago, I was having a very difficult time and as I was walking to work and passed under the awning (I worked at a gas station at the time) a daisy fell onto my arm. There weren't any daisies to be found around the area--I just knew it was from my grandma letting me know that everything was going to be okay.
I love you Grandma!