a man, a cup overfloweth…

This post is inspired by and in memory of a remarkable man, whose very image gives me warmth and a smile. Edmund
passed away a few days ago, leaving a very empty space in our universe.

For beautiful Edmund and his beautiful family:

When I served as development director at the small, precious Grammar School in Putney, Vermont, a humble man with a beaming smile would casually walk
over to me during the annual holiday concert. His connection to the School dated to its origins as he had helped start and support the school, serving on its board, and sent all of his children there. And now he was there to see his grandchildren. His loving wife by his side, he would eye me from across the room and quietly glide across the floor. His eyes meeting mine,
he would reach out his hand, and, in a most avuncular manner, slip me five crisp twenty-dollar bills. “For the school’s annual fund. Good work. Good work.” He whispered with a grin, face radiant with warmth.. And he would glide away.

His glowing visage was infectious in the most wonderful way. Edmund was, in true form, a Renaissance Man with a worldly talent that knew no bounds. Schooled around the globe, fluent in many languages, he was a professor, master musician, mentor, ski and bicycle racer, right up to the Senior Mens Master Class Division into his 80’s, and would proudly support The Grammar School’s Medieval Faire by showing up in period-perfect costume playing a lute. He loved his family and his community deeply.

The funny thing about Edmund’s passing is this:  I did not know him that well. While I am sure he had his share of struggles and obstacles, as we all do, he emanated joy and life. I felt like knew him. I always wanted to know more. He had that magic. I will miss him and I know his loss will leave, at least for the moment, many glasses empty altogether. His lasting spirit will undoubtedly fill them up again…to the brim, over the brim. Thank you Edmund. Thank you Brelsford Family.

With love,



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6 Responses to a man, a cup overfloweth…

  1. Alicia B. Callander says:

    Can’t thank you enough for the wonderful things you wrote about my “little brother” Edmund,
    whose life and accomplishments became truly amazing to me. I know his spirit and influences
    will continue to live on, not only with our family, but with so many others as well.
    Alicia Brelsford Callander…..”big sister”

  2. Carl W says:

    My Great Uncle Edmund was one of the kindest, unflinchingly good men I have ever known. His ethics, brilliant mind and supportive nature commingled to make a wonderfully positive and caring man. He always gave all that he had happily with a smile and encouraging words.

    I feel proud to have known him and to have had his influence in my life. He will be remembered with his smile broad and his voice laughing.

    Sara and my love to all the VT Brelsfords.

  3. Dorinda says:

    Thank you for such a wonderful post on my dear Uncle Edmund. He was such an amazing person, lived life to it’s fullest. Many praises for Edmund and the impact he had in this world.

  4. Maggie Smith says:

    One of the most positive people I have known (even with a hangover!). I just got the news from Carlotta this morning. Sad news, but what a full life he had!

  5. cynthia callander says:

    Thank you Mark, thank you so very much for this, for honoring my favorite uncle, my Uncle Edmund, his amazing story and his wonderful family. Cynthia (of the Florida family).

  6. Ellen Pratt says:

    Beautiful tribute, Mark!

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