Everyone is used to hearing people say or write, he is home with God or Jesus or whomever. We all need something hopeful to think in spite of no evidence for this.
The cable newsperson Jake Tapper has said it all for me. He is Jewish and remembers a Jewish phrase perhaps in some liturgy or talmudic saying, I would not know, in the face of someone’s death. He repeats this whenever he can on his show on CNN: “May his/her memory be (for) a blessing.” This strikes for me the right note. It is not about someone going to heaven or someplace else. It is about the memory of a person we knew which can give us the energy or desire to do something that the deceased person would approve of, some loving or charitable or just good action. That is my answer, thanks to Tapper, to what a person leaves behind.

Norman Ravitch *62
Savannah, Ga.