May 13th, 2002

A Pocket Full of Murder

RIP Mrs. Paul

My eighth grade teacher died today.

Jessie Paul was only in her sixties, but she'd always been ill with a host of ailments... even when she taught my class, I remember her leaning heavily on her cane and missing a number of work days. Her body was swollen with glandular problems, leaving her face and form bloated and puffy. But she was a warm, sweet, encouraging lady, with a gentle twinkle in her eyes -- one of the only teachers I ever had who really encouraged me, as a student and particularly as a writer.

Jessie was a believer in Christ, and attended the same local church as my brother and sister-in-law; when she passed away today, it was in the presence of my sister-in-law and her baby, who had come to the hospital to visit her. She went quietly, peacefully, slipping away from years of weakness and suffering and into the presence of her beloved Lord. "Death is swallowed up in victory." For her, it's a wonderful release.

But I will miss her.