‘How blessed we were’
With fond memories and abundant love, family members and friends of Greg Elliott bid him farewell at a memorial service Friday at the First Baptist Church in Grass Valley.
The church was packed with people who came to honor the 54-year-old man who lived in North San Juan. Elliott recently died in a traffic accident on Highway 49.
Elliott’s pine wood casket, made by his family and close friends, stood in the chancel flanked by large bouquets of white and orange flowers.
Sunshine glowed through slender windows of vermilion, amber and chrome-yellow glass on the walls alongside the altar and filled the hall with a warm, mellow light.
John Elliott spoke of his brother’s amiable and helpful nature.
“Greg welcomed everyone with a big smile and always helped everybody,” he said.
“He was a good man who blessed us in so many ways,” said Russ Randall, Greg Elliott’s neighbor.
With every speaker who came up on stage, the image of a man, cherished for his cordial nature, selflessness and family values, emerged through tear-choked words and brief anecdotes.
“My brother was a very compassionate person, and he had a passion for life,” Evangeline Roberts, Greg Elliott’s sister, told The Union a few hours before the service. “He was a very straightforward man and kept everyone’s confidence.
“If Greg teased you, you knew you were loved. He was always there for you,” Roberts added.
Her brother regularly donated blood at the local blood bank, she added.
“All we keep thinking is how blessed we were to have him in our lives,” Roberts said.
At the end of the service, which lasted for a little over an hour, Greg Elliott’s casket was taken out of the sanctuary for burial at the New Elm Ridge Cemetery in Grass Valley.
As family and friends followed the casket, Greg Elliott’s favorite song – “The Dance” by Garth Brooks – filled the church.
“Our lives are better left to chance. I could have missed the pain, but I’d have had to miss the dance,” the lyrics crooned.
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