The award-winning newspaper of Anne Arundel Community College.

Campus Current

The award-winning newspaper of Anne Arundel Community College.

Campus Current

The award-winning newspaper of Anne Arundel Community College.

Campus Current

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What I learned from a eulogy

Campus+Current+Co-Editor+Izzy+Chase+discovered+her+love+of+public+speaking+by+giving+a+eulogy+at+her+grandfather%E2%80%99s+funeral.+Shown%2C+Chase+speaks+at+the+Civility+Matters+event+on+the+Quad+in+October.
Photo by Everett Luoma
Campus Current Co-Editor Izzy Chase discovered her love of public speaking by giving a eulogy at her grandfather’s funeral. Shown, Chase speaks at the Civility Matters event on the Quad in October.

My grandfather passed away from cancer a month before his funeral. That gave me a whole month to write a eulogy. And still, even with all that time, all I had on the morning of his funeral was an outline of what I wanted to say.
I felt guilty about that. He always encouraged my love of writing, and every time I visited he would ask what I was working on. At the time, I was shy about my work. At 15 years old, I didn’t think I was good at writing or that I could do anything with it.
Talking to him made me realize my insecurities meant nothing as long as I loved what I was writing.
I loved my grandfather. I love writing. I wanted to honor him at his funeral with my writing.
When he died, I knew that I wanted to speak at his funeral. I wanted to honor him and his life, not just his death. I had no idea how to do that, though. Every time I tried to write, I got stuck. I told myself the reason I couldn’t write was because I didn’t love him enough.
That wasn’t true, though.
His death left me devastated even though he had been diagnosed with cancer twice before. But one part of his death stood out to me. He wrote his own obituary to be published in the newspaper. That impressed me. He knew what his fate was and he accepted it.
Before I walked to the microphone on the morning of his funeral, I looked at the program for the service, which said I was remembering my grandfather with my euology. All of a sudden, it hit me. Even if I didn’t have all the right words, I had my memories of him.
When I got up to speak, I saw my family members and his close friends, and all of a sudden I knew exactly what to say. They were all connected to him somehow, and I wasn’t scared anymore because it was like he was still with me.
After my speech, many friends and relatives came up to me. We cried and laughed together. When they shared their stories of him with me, I saw the effect my speaking had.
That experience turned me into someone who loves public speaking. I will always be grateful I was able to remember my grandfather with my words. It showed me that my words matter and that I’m able to make a difference.
Like my grandfather did, with me.

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