The new year is off to a difficult start for our Pratte family. Marsha returns from
Indiana tonight where she attended the funeral of her grandmother, Marjorie Theroff. Then Jim will be on a plane to St. Louis for the funeral of his brother-in-law, Brian Fletcher. Marjorie Theroff was 93. She has been living between life and death for some time now. Her death was a blessing. But Brian Fletcher was 56. His death was not at all expected. It was anything but a blessing. He died in his sleep Sunday morning of an apparent heart attack.
Jim had told me about his sister’s famous husband some time ago. He was the mayor of Ferguson, Missouri from 2005 to 2011. I think you’ve heard of Ferguson. It was in the news quite a bit following the August 9, 2014 police shooting of Michael Brown. It wasn’t in the news so much in 2010 when, under Brian Fletcher’s leadership, the city was one of the “All-American City Award” finalists.
After the shooting and the unrest that followed, Brian Fletcher started his “I Love Ferguson” campaign. Yard signs, coffee mugs, and T-shirts were sold. More than $100,000 was raised and then donated to local businesses damaged in the rioting . 80% of these businesses were minority-owned.
Brian decided to get back into politics in 2015. He was elected to the Ferguson City Council. He was interviewed by “The New Republic” during that campaign. There’s a link to that interview below.
You won’t find as much on the internet about Marjorie Theroff. She wasn’t “famous”. But her obituary gives a window into a life that was also very well lived. I think about the huge positive influence my two grandmothers had on me. I’m sure Marsha would say the same about her Grandma Theroff.
Pray for the Prattes, the Theroffs, and the Fletchers. Death is hard. That verse in Revelation is especially appropriate here: “Blessed are those who die in the Lord henceforth. Blessed indeed . . . for their deeds follow them” (14:13).