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  • Diana

Roses are red, violets are blue...

Two years ago today my grandpa passed away. Ever since he passed away, my life was never the same.

Anthony Mancuso was a WWII veteran, a special education teacher, a Seton Hall graduate, a comedian, a runner, a musician, a brother, a son, a devoted husband, an incredible father, a proud grandfather and an even better man.

I have incredible memories of my grandfather and you can read about some of them in my previous blog posts. But there are a few things that happened before his passing that I rarely talk about. But they are memories that I will replay in my head for years and years.

The summer before my grandpa's death, I made it a priority to visit him at the nursing home every day. I don't think I missed one day. But when my junior year of school started, I accepted an internship. I was juggling being a full time student, working an internship and a part time job. I rarely had any time for myself and I think I only saw my grandpa once a week. Although it was an incredible experience, I often regret taking that internship because I missed out on spending time with my grandpa.

One day after my internship I went to visit my grandpa and at the same time, I skyped into a meeting at school. I put the video on mute as I fed him and talked to him about his day. He was so happy to see me and he was the normal papa I always knew. When I left I said, see you next time papa! Come to find out, that was the last time I spoke to my grandpa.

That Saturday I was scheduled to work a double shift at work. When my mom called me at work to tell me that my grandpa wouldn't make it through the night, I begged my boss to find someone to cover my second shift. I was told that my grandpa already passed away and I sobbed at work. I was so mad that my grandpa passed away and I wasn't there. Thankfully, I was able to skip my second shift and my grandpa was still there. Fifteen minutes later, as soon as we changed the subject, he passed away. Ironically, the last thing he heard was, I am competing in a pageant this weekend. I know that my grandpa was worried about my mom, sister and I. And I truly think he wanted to know that we were going to be okay after her left. I know that hearing those last words was exactly what he wanted to hear. And until this day, I know my grandpa waited for my arrival.

I will remember my grandpa as just that. Someone who truly cared about his family. Growing up my grandpa used to call us and when we picked up the phone, he immediately said "roses are red, violets are blue, I love you." Every day I think about my grandpa and whisper those same words to him.

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