Protecting the Greatest Generation

By: Brittany DeMarco-Furman
Saturday, March 21, 2020

I’ve been sharing a lot of funny memes and keeping things light throughout this entire crisis. For the power of laughter and holding on to faith that the rainbow is 'just around the riverbed' (Yes. I quoted Pocahontas!)  My personality is goofy, weird and would do anything to make someone smile! I promise to continue my positive mindset throughout these scary times, but I do have to be a martyr for a quick few minutes...

People say my profession is dark and morbid. A funeral director. In reality though, it is a profession that guides you away from darkness and towards lighter days. I have a serious profession, but please don't consider it a dark one. As a professional and storyteller, I want to share an encounter I had during this pandemic.

I will not share names, or more information for privacy and in respect. I was the funeral director for a family. The person who had passed left this earth as a mother and wife. She was a very special woman, and I will explain why below.

It was on Wednesday, March 18th, when I decided to take a chance on Market 32 in Glenville. I am a human with ZERO cooking skills. I only needed the basic food necessities; anything in a box or ready to eat is what I buy 99% of the time. These days you are more likely to see me 6 feet away waiting in line for take out at a local restaurant. #supportlocal

Back to the story.

I was at Market 32 and noticed a hardworking employee stocking the shelves. I asked the employee, “Hey, do you happen to know when more toilet paper will come in?” . The employee responded, “Yes! In fact a shipment came in. We are waiting to get through the truckload to that particular section of the truck, give us an hour or two!”

First off, how sweet was that employee to give me “insider” knowledge. As I continued shopping in the supermarket I thought, “Do I really need toilet paper?” I already have enough at home to last my husband and I an entire month. I don’t think Glenville Funeral Home will be having too many visitors during this quarantine. So, I decided I wasn’t coming back for the replenished stocks.

After checking my groceries out, I made my way to the exit at Market 32. On my way out the door I ran into the ‘widow’ of the woman "angel" I discussed earlier. Seeing him made my heart shatter, what made him come out during this time? After finding out how he was doing. I gave him my “insider” knowledge about the toilet paper replenishment hoping I could help him out. 

He smiled. And with a soft look on his face, he explained to me how his wife stockpiled supplies throughout their life together. He continued to explain how much she LOVED buying in bulk, and that there was enough toilet paper to last him a few years! Listening to his response made my stomach churn with sadness and butterflies. This man in front of me lost the love of his life, the person who he walked this earth with for so many years. And now, he has to deal with this crisis in the world! Not fair at all, I thought.

My emotions were a roller coaster until I took into consideration his words. The way he gloated about his wife’s shopping habits and how all that clutter had paid off. It was the last gift she gave him. 


A smile broke on my face.

I am convinced there are signs all around us. Whether that sign is a cardinal from heaven or a rainbow after an impossible day.  A wife left this earth knowing her beloved husband would be OK amidst this frenzy. A sign of true love that transcends time and space. 


Now I have to be the martyr... You may ask, why is he, the widow, at the market to begin with…. I can’t remember exactly, but it wasn’t anything urgent. With that said, I know running into him was a sign to get this message out to anyone I can reach. PLEASE STAY HOME IF YOU ARE OVER THE AGE OF 65. I know you don't want to be forced, but this is for your own protection. If you need anything call someone. I promise there will be a lending hand during this difficult time. We are in this together.


Let's protect the generations before us. Even if that means having to re-think your toilet paper purchase. Times are weird people, but I will see you all just around this riverbed.


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