Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Trip to MN

This next week we care for some unfinished business.

It had been my father's wish to place a tomb stone on the grave of his sister Eldina. She lived for only about 6 months in 1920, and never met her next two siblings, Sister Ellen and Brother (My Dad) Elmer.

Well, this next week, my Mother and I will drive from MN to ND to place that tomb stone. It's about a 1400 mile trip, but will be a good experience.

The Jewish idea is that you are never really dead if people remember you...so Eldina will live on in our hearts...and we shall visit and mark her "grave" or close to it in that cemetery. No family member has been there for years...but there will be people there tending to her grave this next week...US.

Arthur "Duke" Greene Eulogy

Arthur “Duke” Greene
December 30, 1948 -– October 4, 2009

Arthur Greene, known to his family and friends as “Duke”, was born on December 30, 1948 in Atlanta, Texas. He passed to his rest on Sunday, October 4, 2009. He was 61 years, 9 months and 4 days old.
Duke is survived by his wife, Monica Greene and their son, Jordan Greene of Concord, CA.

He also is survived by his mother; Clora Greene, who lives in Michigan, and by three siblings: Barbara Greene of Stockton, California; Michael Greene and his wife Delphine of Saginaw, Michigan and Vickie Davis and her husband Doug of Stockton, California.

His survivors on Monica’s side of the family are Monica’s parents: R.B. and Elisabeth Shelton of Michigan and Monica’s siblings: Martina Currie of Southfield, Michigan; Michael Shelton and his wife Dana of Detroit, Michigan; Matthew Shelton and his wife Patsy of Van Buren Township, Michigan and by Marcia Shelton of Bonn, Germany.

Duke is survived by 15 nieces and nephews and 9 grand-nieces and grand-nephews and by his many church and community friends and co-workers.

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Duke was born in Atlanta, Texas; and moved to Saginaw Michigan when hw was 4 years old. It was in his childhood, that Duke fell in love with Jesus. His first contact with the Adventist church was Vacation Bible School, and eventually he was baptized at the age of 13. His whole family eventually followed him in faith and fellowship with the church.

His high school years were at Buena Vista High School in Michigan, and then he went on to the University of Michigan. He had a 4 year scholarship, but only spent 2 years at Michigan. He went on to studies at Andrews University, and graduated with a BA in Theology in 1970.

In 1975, Duke took an interest in a particular work associate. For 2 years Monica and Duke dated and discussed the world and life…and love. They were married on November 23, 1977. God blessed them with loving union that celebrated 31 years last fall.

In 1982, they moved west; living first in San Francisco, and then for the last 19 years in Concord.

God blessed them with a son in 1994 when Jordan Shelton Greene was born. Duke loved being a father, and had lots of prior experience, being a caring uncle to all his nieces and nephews.

Duke’s working life saw him serve as a teacher in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. He also worked for the Better Living Centers and ran a food co-op. Later on and most recently, he founded and managed group homes for developmentally disabled clients. He started “Circle”, a group of 3 homes for developmentally disabled adults.

Duke was very creative. He wrote plays and songs, and was incredibly well read. He read all he could in the areas of philosophy and religion. If you wanted to have a deep conversation, Duke would be the person to have it with! He was a serious Bible student, and studied the Bible every day.

He also was interested in not just watching movies…but analyzing them. He especially loved History and Drama.

He was generous and funny, and compassionate with others. He was a true intellectual. He received great joy in knowing and serving God, spending time with his son, and don’t forget…Disneyland!

He taught Sabbath School, and would even preach the morning sermon on occasion.
Duke had always been healthy - one of his activities was body building and taking care of himself. But in April of this year, he was diagnosed with Leukemia. He went to UCSF and spent a month as an inpatient, receiving chemotherapy.

At the end of August, a bone-marrow donor was found, and things seemed to be looking up. But in Early September, he developed a lung infection, and spent the last month in the hospital in Walnut Creek. His family and close friends made daily visits to his bedside. He was placed on a ventilator, to give him a chance of recovery. His body didn’t respond to the treatments liked we all had hoped and prayed; and he died of cardiac arrest on Sunday, October 4.

The Resurrection of Jesus gives hope and comfort to us in this hour of grief, knowing Death was defeated at the cross, and by the empty tomb. Because Jesus’ tomb was empty, we know Duke’s grave will one day be empty too…as he is given life again by the Life-giver with Jesus returns to earth.

Our lives have been enriched because we have loved and have been loved by Duke Greene. He was a sensitive, patient, kind and loving Husband, Father, Son, Brother, Uncle, Cousin, and Friend! We trust him to the arms of Jesus, who will judge him with mercy and love and grace.

His passing leaves a hole in the world and hole in our lives. We are looking forward to seeing him again on Resurrection Day! May God bless us all with His comfort and peace this hour…and until He comes.



Lovingly Prepared by the Greene Family, with Pastor O. Kris Widmer

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