Sunday, August 17, 2008

Maurice Foxx ( 1948 - 2008 )

Maurice © WyldWoods 2008Maurice was a good man and a great friend. Who, over the years, told people that he didn't think there would be more than a handful of people at his funeral.

Well, his funeral was held on Wednesday and there were more than a handful of people there. In fact there were hundreds and it was standing room only in the foyer once all the seats (and several spaces on the floor) were taken long before the receiving line was complete.

Several people, both family and friends, spoke and by the end there was not a dry eye in the place. I know I was brought to tears several times during the service.

And then in was over.

And then we found out that his family and his tribe were leaving to spread his ashes and they had decided this ceremony would be open to his friends as well if they wished to attend. Which we very much did.

So we all headed out to a relatively quiet section of beach where the tribe performed a cleansing ceremony {They smudged everyone} and prepared for the final part of the ceremony in which Maurice's daughters took his ashes, got in a canoe with two rowers, one of whom was also Maurice's son, and started rowing out into the ocean. However Maurice got the last laugh.

The canoe was sitting very low in the water, much too low for the height of the waves, and as they rowed out the canoe kept taking on water as the waves broke over the gunnels.

By the time the canoe was out almost out to where his ashes would be spread it was completely swamped. And then another wave hit and the canoe went over. The people who had been in the canoe were now hanging onto the canoe while one of Maurice's daughters shook the skin, which had been used to wrap the ashes, over head and let the wind spread the ashes behind them.

Once everyone on the beach was sure that those in the water were safe there was much whooping. This was accompanied by a lot of cheering, laughter, and shouts of "Maurice never would have wanted to go in by himself."

It certainly lightened the mood, and reminded everyone of the sense of humour Maurice had, and his good nature.

He will be sorely missed.


  1. Maurice was my uncle and a fine man. He gave me my first summer job. He was loved by many and will surely be missed. thanks for the post.

  2. It's only through your post (and photo on Flickr) that I would ever have heard of this man, so thanks. It's too easy to forget that in every community there are local heroes who contribute far more than they have to. My sorrow for the loss of your friend.

  3. Maurice was one of the best human beings I have ever known. I was honored not only to have known him, but to have him as part of my family, and clan.

    I will miss him more than words can express, but in my heart I know he will stick around for a little while to see Majai grow up and see my kids on their journey's. They have very, very big shoes to fill.... if indeed those shoes can ever be filled.

  4. sorry to hear about your friend ...