Lost Classic! “Jezebel” by Frankie Laine
Frankie Laine, born Francesco Paolo LoVecchio (say that 10 times fast), had a career that spanned more than 75 years. In 1951, he recorded a number 2 hit called “Jezebel,” a song that spoke of a woman who was a devil and angel and everything in between. My grandfather, Ben Russotto, would play that song and sing it to my grandmother, Mildred, from time to time. When I was a kid I never knew what any of it meant, it was just funny every time. She even laughed and sang along. Those were fun days. Days when my grandparents acted like kids. But as those days grew into years, the laughter was replaced by the brutal reality of life…death.
My grandfather got sick and passed away in 2002. My grandmother moved here to Texas from Florida. A move she didn’t want to make, but one she had to make. She couldn’t make it up and down the steps anymore because of her bad knees. She had no one to take care of her. She began to experience chest pains in 2004. She went in for open heart surgery. None of us thought she would make it, but she did. She went in and out of the hospital at least two dozen times since then and she always came out.
However, today was a different story. There was no hospital visit, but at 6:08 a.m her heart stopped beating. The congestive heart failure was too much to overcome and she went home to be with the Lord. Her 100 pound frame suffered greatly over the past few years, but every day I would visit her she always asked how I was doing and how my wife and kids were getting along. Every day, without fail. She was everything a grandmother should be; loving, caring, and considerate, and when she was well, she wouldn’t let you get anything yourself. She was selfless and kind. Yes, she could difficult at times over the past few years, but you would be to if you had to always rely on people for everything. Today is both a sad and happy day. Sad that she’s gone, but happy that she will suffer no more.
The older we get, the more people we lose, that’s human nature. I am glad my grandmother stuck around for 93 years. She was a special person. Nana, I’ll never forget you and don’t you forget that the Cardinals are in Arizona now and the Rams are in St. Louis. See you again…when we take a walk.
– George Kovacik