Getrude…

Gertrude daughter -3I told you all about Getrude and how she was very sick.  Getrude first worked for John and I in July of 1992.  We were living at the Baptist Haiti Mission in Fermathe and Getrude was a young woman back then just 25 years old.  Getrude worked for us about a year when she left to raise her baby daughter.

I lost contact with Getrude until 1997 when I went to visit someone down in Port-au-Prince with an orphanage and there was Getrude working!  By that time, Getrude had a beautiful daughter and we were in our own orphanage.  I got to see Getrude frequently because I went to the orphanage weekly. 

In 1998, Getrude returned to GLA and asked if she could work for us again.  I was very happy for Getrude to come work for us.  She was kind and hard working.  Back then, I only had one cook in the kitchen and Getrude’s cooking was GREAT!

About 6 years ago, Getrude found out she was HIV positive.  She was devastated!  I walked into the kitchen one day and found her on the floor crying and praying.  She didn’t tell me then what was wrong but I found out a couple of years later when I did testing on her for another reason.  Getrude was very diligent about taking her medications and changed from the kitchen to working in the laundry and cleaning house. 

For the last year, Getrude was having problems but never told anyone.  People questioned her but she said that her doctor was taking care of her.  Then she told Miss Magaly that she was in severe pain and bleeding. She had advanced Uterine Cancer that had metastasized throughout her pelvic region.  We were all so sad.  The doctor said there was nothing he could do.

I was praying that I would get to see Getrude again before Gertrude daughter -4she left us.  I got a call from Joyce while I was flying home and she told me Getrude was not good.  Miss Vicki was going to go and spend the night with her and try to get her pain under control.  I kept calling while I was flying ever chance I got.  I told them to tell her how much I loved her and appreciated all she did for our family.

I arrived in Haiti around noon on Tuesday, December 6 and came home, unloaded my bags, and went straight up to Getrude’s house.  She was very sleepy and not talking clearly, but she grabbed me around the neck and just hugged me really tight and said…”I’m so glad that you made it!”  I sat by her bed for an hour and then left to go home.  I left her house about 3 PM.  She died at 5 PM.  I truly think she was holding on until I got there to tell me good bye.  Everyone kept telling her that I was on my way.  She had been telling everyone good bye throughout the last two days of her life.  She was ready to go be with her Lord.

We will miss Getrude very much.  I remember when my son, Steeve, was little that he used to sit on the counter top and help Getrude do dishes and speak to her in Creole.  She called him “Ti Teeve” which is was his nickname when he was little.

The angels sang when Getrude arrived, I am sure.

Today, we have her funeral.  her daughter who is 18years old, is in her last year of school.  Getrude was so proud of her!  Please pray for Fania, her daughter, and for her elderly mother and father too.  Getrude took care of them all and it will be difficult for them now that she is gone. We are very thankful that Fania has a sponsor for school this year.  I would love to see her go on and get a university education when she finishes high school. 

6 comments (Add your own)

1. Kathy Barnett wrote:
My heart goes out to all of you touched by Getrude. I am so sorry for your pain.

Thu, December 15, 2011 @ 1:20 PM

2. Chris Hermann wrote:
To John and Dixie and all at GLA, we send our heartfelt sympathy and hugs via email. May God comfort and provide for Gertrude's family and may He hold you all in this time of loss. We love you, Ken and Chris

Thu, December 15, 2011 @ 1:34 PM

3. Carrie Rouchka wrote:
Can we sponsor Gertrude's elderly mother and father? Does Fania live with them?

Thu, December 15, 2011 @ 2:01 PM

4. Jane Blannin-Bruleigh wrote:
So sad for your loss, what a blessing she was to so many, praying for all of you,

Thu, December 15, 2011 @ 2:25 PM

5. Dixie Bickel wrote:
Fania does live with her grandparents. I hadn't thought of sponsoring her parents. let me think how that might work. They could not stay for the funeral. They left before it started. They depended on Getrude so much. She cared for them and was bringing home money to help run the household.

Thu, December 15, 2011 @ 9:13 PM

6. Marie wrote:
So sorry for your loss...praying for all who loved her.

Fri, December 16, 2011 @ 10:56 AM

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