Sunday, December 27, 2009


My grandfather passed away yesterday morning. Death has been on my mind these last few months already, mostly my absolute fear of it/my LOVE of life. My grandfathers death and the weeks leading up to it have changed so many of my thoughts and have made me more willing to explore my feelings. These last few weeks watching my grandfather pass, he has looked more and more like a little boy to me and I've thought often of his mother and how she watched his first crawls, steps, first words the way I'm watching my own little boy. It comforts me in many ways to think that my greatest hope for Q is that he leaves this world the way my grandfather has - old, peaceful, painless, of old age and with his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren around him.
I'm not sure what to do with myself now that he's gone. How do you mourn a non-traumatic and in many ways a non-sad death? I don't know, but I'm wading my way through it right now.

My father wrote a beautiful obituary of his father, my grandfather and namesake Charles Shoneman

Charles Shoneman, 92, made his transition Saturday December 26 after a brief stay at UNC Hospital and Carol Woods Health Center. Born in Cincinnati, Ohio he grew up in Woodmere, Long Island where he became a life long Yankees fan and developed a fondness for a good cigar. He later moved to Elkins Park, suburban Philadelphia and eventually retired to Chapel Hill, North Carolina with his wife Anne who pre-deceased him. He was recognized as being an extraordinary storyteller and jokester. He was also widely renown as the godfather of youth baseball. One of the last of a vanishing generation of heroic men and women, undeterred by Depression and War, he saw his enlistment as not only service to his country but to all mankind. Fiercely independent, Charles sought neither rank nor reward, yet it was the quiet richness of his life that was his greatest virtue and will remain his legacy. He led a life of purposeful simplicity and humility always eager to reach out and offer the spirit of his kindness, generosity and humor. He held tightly to those things most precious in his life and when it was time to let go he let go.

He leaves to cherish his memory son Chuck and wife Merle of Maryland, son John and wife Jill of Hillsborough, N.C. five grandchildren Seth, Dov, Charlotte, Lindsay and Jamie. Three great grandchildren Mateo, Sophia and Qais, devoted former daughter in law Mickey Jo Sorrell of Chapel Hill and his loving companion of twenty years Frances Fuller of South Carolina. To all of those whose lives he surely touched he will be warmly remembered and sadly missed. In this world he made a difference.

In lieu of a funeral a remembrance in his honor will be held at a future date. Condolence messages may be sent to

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