Episode 5: The never-ending smile of Grandma Coyle

       By Steve Cichon

Grandma Coyle, the saint, died on All Saints Day.

I mean, she wasn’t some perfect saintly woman, but that makes what she gave so much more special.

She swore, drank beer, smoked Parliaments, and she’d crack ya if you needed it. But she also loved all of us fully, completely, and deeply every moment.

Just as important as the love, she constantly let us know how much she loved us.

Her love for all of us was unconditional and ever flowing… And that love just made her so happy.

I loved watching her on holidays– that love filled smile would fill her face every time one of her kids or grandkids or their spouses walked through the door.

The radiance of her heart made the world a better place for the time she was here, and it continues now.

Her heart lives on in all of us who she loved. The love that radiated from her smile every time any of us walked in the room left no question that there was a beautiful woman who loved you with every fiber of her being.

I’m blessed in that just the thought of that smile fills my heart with love enough to share in the way she taught me.

She’s been gone a long time, but the love she built in my heart lasts and grows as her example shows me how to love the people in my life without compromise.

Even if someone doesn’t deserve it. Or if someone needs a crack. Or if someone isn’t wearing an undershirt (the crime of which I was most often guilty in Grandma’s court)… no matter what, love never wavers.

PS… I’m wearing an undershirt.

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Steve Cichon

Steve Cichon writes about Buffalo’s pop culture history. His stories of Buffalo's past have appeared more than 1600 times in The Buffalo News. He's a proud Buffalonian helping the world experience the city he loves. Since the earliest days of the internet, Cichon's been creating content celebrating the people, places, and ideas that make Buffalo unique and special. The 25-year veteran of Buffalo radio and television has written five books and curates The Buffalo Stories Archives-- hundreds of thousands of books, images, and audio/visual media which tell the stories of who we are in Western New York.