A Wonderful Man named Great Giddo

We just returned from Jacksonville where we celebrated the life of Mr. Abraham Sallah, Edie's Great Giddo, who passed away Friday at the great age of 96. These pictures are wonderful reminders to me of what a warm, energetic, loving man Giddo was. Notice the one of him in the top right corner holding the sparkler at our wedding. He stayed, a 92 year old man, and danced the night away with his family seeing us off with sparkles in his eyes, in his heart and literally in his hand! That was the kind of man Giddo was. A hard working man who loved his family and his life. He always made me feel right at home. What a great gift to never meet a stranger and to always make everyone feel special.

I remember the first time I met Giddo. He welcomed me with open arms, kissing my lips and giving me a big hug. He instantly reminded me of my PawPaw who had passed many years earlier. They were both so alike. So many great stories to tell, so much knowledge to share and so much love to give. Giddo forced me that first night of meeting him and the whole Jacksonville family to eat not two, but three helpings of rice. I laterally thought I would explode! I have now learned that I was strategically placed that night by Giddo at the dinner table so that I could experience what everyone else had many, many times before. And that was to eat, eat, eat.
Giddo also introduced me to my first Cactus Pear - which I loved!

Giddo's funeral was a traditional Arabic service. A prestigious, formal service - fitting for a great man as Giddo. I loved seeing the traditions taking place. Listening to the songs and praises of the Priest, smelling the incense and hearing the bells chime. Giddo loved his church and his Ramallah community and they too shred the same love for him. Giddo was one of the founding members of the St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church and a charter member of the Ramallah Club of Jacksonville. I am honored to be a part of such a great family with such a rich heritage. These pictures are cherished memories of a wonderful person who we will one day share with Edie, her Great Giddo.

If you click on the photos above they will enlarge. If anyone would like copies of any of these I will be happy to e-mail.

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  1. Oh Michelle- I'm so sorry to hear of the loss. I remember Mindy talking about Giddo often when we were younger...
    BUT, what a great blessing to live so long and touch people in the way that he did!! That's what life is all about and I am glad that you could be there with Scott and his family to celebrate Giddo's life. Hugs to you all!!

  2. our sympathy to your family. it's so wonderful that he lived such a vibrant life & that Edie got to share in that! i enjoyed reading about him- such a sweet & loving man. hope ya'll are well.

  3. Michelle,
    What a wonderful tribute to Dad! Thank you for all thekind words. I know Dad loved you and Edie as much as all the rest of the family.. Your trip for the funeral and bringing Edie meant a great deal to me. I was so happy to finally meet beautiful Edie. She is a joy to all of us. So happy to hear about the report from the cardiologist and all her achievements. You are all truly blessed. I would love to have the pictures you posted of your wedding. I would really appreciate your emailing them to me. Love to all, Shirley