Memorial Service Speech - Eric Lockovitch
I'm Eric Lockovitch, Ann Nelson’s boyfriend for the last three years. I not only truly loved Ann, but she was my best friend. I can't explain to you what she meant to me because I can't explain it myself. So instead of telling you how Ann touched my life, I'm going to share a story of Ann.
I've found sitting around a table telling Ann stories has helped the grieving process. It has also allowed me to understand Ann in her many facets of life, and there are plenty!
Ann was extremely goal orientated. Not only would she set goals and complete them with ease, she excelled at everything she did. A goal was not complete until she was in the top 5% in the particular activity whether in her career or personal life. As you can imagine, it was difficult keeping up with her, as her family can attest to.
I got to witness one of these goals from inception to completion over the last two years. Ann decided she wanted to learn how to cook. The days of three meals at McDonalds, pizza delivery, and reservations were not over, but dwindling.
Her first endeavor was shared with Jeb and Suzy Scherb. Ann decided to make a Thanksgiving dinner for us two years ago. I thought it might be easier to start with steaks and potatoes, but she wanted the real deal of course. I had one job, take the dogs to the park for several hours before Jeb and Suzy got over while she went grocery shopping. I returned from the park around 3:00 expecting to see Suzy and Ann stuffing the bird and peeling potatoes. Instead I found them at the dinning room table sharing some wine and laughing, as Ann always did. I asked, "Is the bird in the oven?" With a hint of optimism, Ann replied, "We haven't even gone shopping yet". I asked "are we still having dinner tonight?" "Of course" she said with her laugh.
The groceries were bought and a whirlwind began in the kitchen. Jeb and I retired to the living room to get to know each other and remove ourselves from harms way. After an hour of preparation I returned to kitchen to fetch Jeb and I another beverage. I found Ann with a measuring cup in one hand and the breadcrumbs in the other. Reading the directions, looking at the measuring cup, then flipping the bag over to read the front. She asked me "how many oz.'s in a cup?" I replied "8 " She continued to look at the measuring cup with the 8 oz mark next to the 1-cup line, look back at the directions, then flip the bag over and read the front. I could hear the wheels turning. Then Ann piped up "Suzy, I'm going to send Eric back to the store for more bread crumbs, we didn't get enough, we only got 1 bag and we need 8." I asked, " How big is this bird?" “12lbs.” "Why do we need 8 bags of bread crumbs for a 12 lb bird?" "Look, we need 3 cups of bread crumbs, there are 8 oz.'s to a cup, so we need 24 oz.'s of bread crumbs and this bag is only 3 oz.'s! I need you t go buy 7 more bags of bread crumbs right now!" At this point I tried to explain to her the difference between fluid oz.’s and dry oz.'s, but I still had to agree to take the blame if it didn't turn out.
I returned to the living room with several beverages for Jeb and I along with some chips and told Jeb it might be awhile. On my next journey to the kitchen I found Suzy over the sink peeling potatoes with a knife. I asked Suzy why she wasn't using one of our two potato peelers. Ann told her we didn't have one. I reiterated we had two and went to the drawer to fetch one. Ann being curious as to what a potato peeler looked like came over and said: "That's not a potato peeler, that's a carrot peeler." Suzy and I dropped to our knees in laughter. I returned to Jeb this time with double the beverages and a cheese plate. The bird went in at 7:00 p.m. and we ate around midnight, and it was good!
We all have our starting points; I was lucky to witness Ann's with cooking.
One year later after many fantastic meals Gary, Midge Alex and Kim came to Chicago for Thanksgiving. Ann made the best everything from scratch, including the cranberries, Thanksgiving dinner we have ever had.
Once again she completed her goal and excelled at what she did!
We can all learn from Ann:
Live life to the fullest
Have no regrets
Set goals and excel at them
I love you Ann.