It was strange to go to a wake in a church. Everything seemed so spread out. We got there about 6:30 and it wasn't too crowded. I talked with some people I knew outside and they told us that it had been chaos earlier. They had one of the misting tents set up on the side of the church. The last time I saw one of those was when I took Frankie to see the Kennedy a few years ago. I asked Spellman if it had been bad enough to need it and he said there were a few people who almost passed out. So we lucked out. We never saw "T" because he was still working on making sure every detail was being handled for tomorrow. He is the go-to guy for things like this. Still he found time to call and check on us. Tomorrow will run smoothly with decorum the occasion deserves because of "T" and people like him. He didn't know Paul, but he will put the same effort into tomorrow he would for his best friend.
We were nervous about seeing Maryellen. What if she broke down? We would have dissolved right along with her. But we needn't have worried. Maryellen was utterly fabulous! A backbone of steel. Bearing up under the heat, the crowds, facing the unfaceable with beauty and dignity. She was a sight to behold.
The State Police liason for the family brought a man in and sat him in the front pew. He was terribly distraught. They got him water and tissues. Other Troopers walked over to check on him. They went and got Maryellen and brought her to him. She consoled him! We were floored. There she is in her own nightmare that won't end and she goes over and talks to this guy until he pulls himself together.
We left in absolute awe of Maryellen.