Friday, August 6, 2010

In Memory of my younger brother Mike Papale

Dear friends,

On June 7, 2010 at approximately 10:30 AM my younger brother Mike passed away from colon cancer. He was only 51, had 3 children, 6 grandchildren, and a beautiful wife, Debbie.

Below is the Eulogy I read at my brother Mike's funeral. This posting is dedicated to my brother Mike. We all love and miss him. Oh, did I mention that I HATE CANCER.

Good evening,

Thank you all for being here this evening.

I know my brother Michael is going to be truly missed by many. Memorial Hospital Pedi-ICU will never be the same and neither will his family. Mike helped save many children over his 30 years at Hollywood Memorial. But, we know that Mike would want us to move on as difficult as this may be.

To my mother Lena who every morning was dropped off at the hospital by my brother Joe to be at her son’s side I know this is a difficult time for you. But, just look around and see how much your son is truly loved.

To my sister-in-law my brother’s wife Debbie, he loved you so much. You were his shinning diamond. I made a promise to Mike to make sure you are okay. This I will carry out for sure. I just hope I don’t drive you crazy.

To his children, Little Mikie, and Little Debbie. Know he loved you very very much.

To his sister-in-law Barbara and brother in law Joe, and his in-laws Frank and Leona, he truly loved you all very much. He loved those days visiting you all in Georgia.

We all have our own memories of my brother Mike. I know I have many especially as a child when we lived in NY. Playing in the snow, sleigh riding, going to the roller rink, the World’s Fair, and raking those leaves on a crisp beautiful Fall day in NY and then jumping in them. I remember one time after raking those leaves I jumped in them and to my surprise smelled something very funny. It was dog poop, which he enjoyed watching me jump out very fast. Needless to say, I never jumped in a bunch of leaves again. I am positive this is the reason why Mike SMELLED everything before eating. Those of us who really knew Mike picked up this habit for sure. I know both my brother Joe and I did.

I thank you all for being here this evening. May God Bless you, all of you, on this day and bring you each the comfort and peace that Michael now has. This is ever as much a celebration of Michael's life as it is saying fare thee well, for farewells are only temporary till we meet our loved ones at Heaven's Gate.

It is at this time I would like to read of beautiful poem by Linda Ellis titled The Dash. Some of you may already have heard it.

I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend he referred to the dates on his tombstone from the beginning to the end.

He noted that first came the date of his bi rth: My brother Michael’s is from November 2, 1957 to June 7th, 2010 (too short as far as I’m concerned)

But he said what mattered most of all Was the dash between those years For that dash represents all the time That he spent alive on earth.

And now only those who loved him Know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not how much we own; The cars, the house, the cash, What matters is how we live and love And how we spend our dash.

My brother Michael was loved by many as we can see here this evening. He loved his wife, children, friends, and his job where he has saved so many children.

So think about this long and hard. Are there things you’d like to change? (I definitely do!)

For you never know how much time is left, That can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough t consider what’s true and real and always try to understand
the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger, and show appreciation more and love the people in our lives
like we’ve never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect, and more often wear a smile remembering that this special dash might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy is being read with your life’s actions to rehash would you be proud of the things they say wbout how you spent your dash?

Thank you,

Cindy Papale


  1. Hi Cindy! Love, love, love you blog. I would love it if you would check out my most recent post on Life After Cancer blog entitled "The Gifts of No Escape" and let me know what you think. Please feel free to pass the link along. Thanks so much.


    I am home in Heaven, dear ones;
    Oh so happy and so bright!
    There is perfect joy and beauty
    In this everlasting light.

    All the pain and grief is over,
    Every restless tossing passed;
    I am now at peace forever,
    Safely home in Heaven at last.

    Did you wonder I so calmly
    Trod the valley of the shade?
    Oh, but Jesus' love illumined
    Every dark and fearful glade.

    And He came Himself to meet me
    In that way so hard to tread;
    And with Jesus' arm to lean on,
    Could I have one doubt or dread?

    Then you must not grieve so sorely,
    For I love you dearly still,
    Try to look beyond earth's shadows,
    Pray to trust our Father's will.

    There is work still waiting for you,
    So you must not idly stand;
    Do it now, while life remains,
    You shall rest in Jesus' land.

    When that work is all completed,
    He will gently call you Home;
    Oh, the rapture of that meeting,
    Oh, the joy to see you come!