He is my great-uncle, uncle Jack, and a great uncle he is. I say is because he is not gone, yet. To my knowledge his heart still beats so I can not, will not use the past tense. It is so sad in many ways that it takes a great loss to have fond memories come flooding back. I need to try and remember good things daily, not just when I am sad.
A little background about Great Uncle Jack: He is married to my Nana's sister, Carol and Nana is my mom's mama. They have three kids, Amy, Kelly and Mike. I have a stuffed teddy bear named after Mike (from when I was little) and he is the only one I refer to in the familiar form (his sisters I call Aunt). They have 2 grandkids, Tom and Joy.
Aunt Carol and Uncle Jack are like another set of grandparents to me. I remember staying with them for a few days when I was about 4 or 5 when my parents went to Disneyland. I remember very much Uncle Jack playing Santa Claus at the church every Christmas. Sara (my sister) and I always felt so special that we knew Santa! He always made sure to give us a special wink and a candy cane. We looked forward to it all year. This one is certainly a hard one for me. I think I last saw Uncle Jack when RJ was very small. I have a picture somewhere and will have to dig it up. In the meantime I have this one that his son, Mike, took and I love it.
So Uncle Jack, whatever or whoever is calling you home, I hope you find peace. You are loved now, you will always be loved.