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“This number is no longer in service,” the recording said.

Dad’s only living sister had just been knifed out of my life. The search to find the 97 year old petite lady began. She may have gone into a nursing home, then my heart tightened, she may have passed away.

“Hello, my aunt lives in your apartment building and her phone’s been disconnected, please call me back.” Twice this message was left, along with contact info, in the next few days.

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A few days later, my cell phone rang, and it was the lady who managed the apartment building. My muscles tensed as if bracing for the bad news. It was. My Aunt had passed in May. Why hadn’t I called her sooner, I knew she was old and I may not get to speak to her again, now it’ll never happen.

My throat tightened as the situation was gently explained. She did not die of old age, she fell and hit her head, was taken to the hospital, and a few days later, joined my Dad in the great unknown, beyond this earthly life.

Seven years ago my Aunt had told me she had no one left, now that her brother was gone.

Reassuring her that I was still here didn’t help. We live thousands of miles apart. We both knew it wasn’t the same as having someone close by. At 97, she did not participate in the internet society, although she said she did get a computer once, then gave it away in frustration.

There was one bit of good news though. Someone came to take care of my Aunt’s after death business. The apartment manager had scribbled down a ladies name on a piece of paper. After a few seconds of rustling in the papers on her desk, she presented me with the only clue to the last of my Dad’s family.

Who was the mystery friend or relative that may be able to answer my questions?

What were the circumstances of her death? Would they know what her life was like in the months before her passing?

So the search begins for more answers.


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