Eulogy for my Mom: Desi Grayes

Yesterday, I laid my Mom to rest, Desi Grayes. My Mom was the biggest influence in my life. She shaped and molded me into the person that I am today. Without Desi Grayes – my Mom, there would be no Marketing Keys. She gave me the courage and confidence to start my own business after 20 years working in media. Below are excepts from my eulogy that I had written about her life and her influences. This eulogy was one of the easiest pieces of copy I ever had to write as it came directly from the heart.

Her Courage

If there is one quality though which I admire the most from my Mom, Desi Grayes, it is her courage. That just may come from being a Spartan (her Mother from Sparta, Greece) or it may have come from her upbringing in Brooklyn. At a time – the 1970s – when it was rare to see couples getting divorces – my Mom and Dad split apart. My Mom – without any background and training – quickly learned the art of selling Real Estate. She worked for a Greek owned real estate company owned by the Gouletas Family – American Invesco. We didn’t see her much in the late ’70s and early ’80s. That’s because she quickly became one of the top Real Estate Agents working in Chicagoland working on various Chicago condominium conversions. Apartments were quickly converting to condos back then and my Mom was selling them in record numbers. She would come home with her wrist sore from opening so many doors with so many keys. Her sole motivation? To make sure her (3) kids would receive the best upbringing as possible.

Her Inspiration

That courage lives on today through her (3) children and her (9) Grandchildren. It is no coincidence that my Sister, my Brother and I are all running our own businesses. It takes a certain quality to do that and one must have a lot of confidence and a lot of courage to pull it off. We have Mom to thank for that. Her (9) Granchildren have not been around too long but they have done some amazing things in such a short time. They were inspired by their Nana. Mom, I can write a book on your life. You have had such an impact on me. I thank God for putting you in my life and the decades of time that you had an opportunity to be the perfect Mother to me.

Her Hollywood Ending

But the story doesn’t end there. After my Mom had been divorced and a single Mom for 25 years, a miracle had entered her life. His name was Alex Grayes. Like Mom would have wanted, they met in church. The first time Alex came up to her in Coffee Hour, my Mom blew him off. But then a chance second meeting at a St. Andrew’s Greek Picnic reunited the 2 of them and brought them together. This time Mom couldn’t say No. Alex, I can’t thank you enough for coming into my Mom’s life and our lives. Without you, I have a feeling that my Mom’s life would have been shortened. You have been the perfect StepDad and Pappou to my girls and we look forward to spending much more time with you. Your love for my Mom was magical and the fact that you had waited until you were in your late 60s to find her and get married for the first time is something that you normally only see in Hollywood movies.

Her Spirit Lives On

Mom, I am so happy that you are no longer suffering and I am so happy that you will be reunited with your Mother and Father in Heaven. We love you Mom and your spirit will live on in your 3 kids and your 9 grandchildren. In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.