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Eulogy for Rose Tomita

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(This article was originally published on March 28th, 2010. It was a speech I gave at the remembrance of a very important person in my life. Her influence on me cannot be measured and it goes to show how you never know who you're influencing with your words and deeds. If you approach life with tolerance and love for the others you come in contact with, that tolerance and love will seeded in the hearts of those others and the fruits they may bear on maturation is incalculable.)

(Rose Tomita – January 20, 1932 – March 7, 2010. She was a remarkable woman. There are not enough like her in this world. We could all learn a thing or two from her life. The world is a poorer place for her passing. She shall be missed. What follows is the reading I gave for her at her remembrance).

Rose Tomita was an exceptional human being. I consider her a second mom. Throughout my youth she showed me nothing but kindness. She was one of the most tolerant and patient people I have ever met. She had to be to raise six children as she did. Looking back after having children of my own, I wonder how she managed to keep her cool so often as we children would oft times push her to her limits, and she showed us that her patience had no boundaries. She went through life expressing loving kindness not only for her children, but for her fellow human beings.

I always felt a part of the Tomita family. I never felt unwelcome at their household. I remember their house as being a gathering place for kids, a makeshift playground for the community. In my mind, when I think of the Tomita´s, it will always be summertime and we will be playing basketball in the driveway, digging in the sandbox, or as night falls and the crickets start to chirp, using the tree house as a base to play flashlight tag. Rose Tomita was an intricate part of this. She could have sent us away as other parents would. She could have pointed us off in another direction so that she could enjoy some peace and quiet she so deserved. Yet she didn´t. She allowed for her yard to become such a playground, and she showed infinite tolerance for the sounds of children at play. This is a quality that many adults of today fail to show.

The quality of a person´s life should not be measured in the wealth one acquires, or the number of years one has lived. The quality of a person´s life should be measured in the people one has touched, and in the ways those people have been touched. The quality of a person´s life should be measured in the goodness one has shown to others in the years she has lived. It is in those people where the true wealth is planted. That is where your true contribution to the world will be measured. Rose Tomita was a good person and I cannot think of higher praise. I can only hope others will speak so kindly of me when my time comes.

It just so happens I believe in the human spirit. I believe that there is more than just chemical reactions and electrical impulses residing in the physical flesh we call our bodies. Rose Tomita had a strong spirit. I am certain she has found her way to a place of peace where she can either hear the children playing or not, depending on her wishes. Whether you believe in a God or not, whether you believe in an afterlife or not, there is one thing I am certain of. The people we love live on in here (point to heart) and in our memories (point to head) after they pass on. Their influence on us manifests in our actions and goes back out into the world a thousand fold as we interact with our fellow human beings. Rose Tomita´s tolerance, patience, kindness and love has found a place in every one of us who knew her. Her presence in this world has made it a better place for us all to be.


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Last Updated on Monday, 03 May 2010 13:50