Elizabeth Adda Robinson Ratcliffe
In Memoriam

Text of Flossie Lewis speaking at April 17, 2016 Memorial Service


You cannot imagine two women who came from such different backgrounds. Liz knew China, the daughter of pastors, missionaries. I knew only Chinese laundry men. And sometimes I would run in to their store to beg for lychee nuts. She knew what real lychee nuts were.

From two such different backgrounds, she was able to reach across to me and I loved her from the first moment I set eyes on her. There was an immediate understanding, there were just—there were no barriers we couldn’t cross despite our differences.

And I know too, that if ever I were in real trouble, she would embrace me. I would lean on her. And the lines from Bobby Burns’s last tribute to a young woman who took care of him come back to me. I’m sure that Liz would say to me,

Oh, wert thou in the cauld blast
On yonder lea, on yonder lea,
My plaidie to the angry airt,
I’d shelter thee, I’d shelter thee

Liz, I’d shelter thee. You’re sheltering me now.

Thank you.

The Poetical Work of Robert Burns
Edited with a Critical Memoir by William Michael Rossetti
London : E. Moxon, Son & Co., 1871
pp. 493-94
OH, WERT THOU IN THE CAULD BLAST. Tune--``The Lass o' Livingstone.''

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