The change of venue for Glenn Shadix's memorial service was probably the most fortunate thing that occurred surrounding his death. As we were planning the service there was no way to estimate the number of people that might show up. The sanctuary at Covenant Community Church was precisely the right size, as it was about full, but not overcrowded. Things happen for a reason.
The people from Covenant jumped in to help make our plans coalesce into a service that was unlike most, but that Glenn's mother said he would have loved. I'm not going to name names out of fear of leaving someone out, but you Covenant people know who you are. The service would not have been the same with anyone else doing the behind the scenes stuff. Again, things happen for a reason.
Here is a review, if you will, for those who were not able to attend. Prior to the service a slide show of photos of Glenn with lots of movie shots displayed on the TV screens in the sanctuary and the lobby. This brought an occasional smile to folks.
A program with this picture of Glenn and a list of the participants and the order of service, and an insert that listed many (but not all) of Glenn's movies, television shows and plays, was handed out. And cards for people to write their wishes or memories on were available and the messages will be printed on Glenn's web site at a later date.
The order of service was as follows: Instrumental music; Welcome and instruction (you know, turn off your cell phones and not video or audio or photos during the service); hymn - I'll Fly Away - Tena Wilson; Scripture reading - 23rd Psalm, and Prayer - Rev. J. R. Finney; music - What a Wonderful World - Ken Talley; Eulogy - Joe Openshaw; music - "Get Happy" - Vanessa Anderson (a Judy Garland favorite of Glenn); Poem - On Death (Kahlil Gibran) - Gigi Talley; Message of Comfort - Rev. J. R. Finney; hymn - Amazing Grace - Tena Wilson; Closing Prayer - Rev. J. R. Finney; music - Banana Boat (Day-O) - Ken, Tena and Vanessa.
Glenn's ashes were on the altar in a beautiful black walnut (I believe) box that had a little painting on the lid (done by one of Glenn's close friends), surrounded by two studio photo portraits of Glenn and two lit candles. Beautiful radiating flower arrangements were placed below the altar. Behind Glenn on the back wall was a beautiful dove and rainbow stained glass piece, recently hung by the church. Palm trees flanked the back wall, giving the scene a California look, in my opinion.
Here is the eulogy that I delivered. Well, here it is as it was written, I have no idea how closely I followed the printed words. I needed a teleprompter. If the eulogy is not visible, click on the link and you can read it.
Eulogy for Glenn Shadix
Rev. Finney and I accompanied the family out during final strains of Day-O. Truthfully, it was all I could do to keep from standing up and dancing (in that Beetlejuice style) when Ken and Tena and Vanessa were singing. If I had, would others have followed? We'll never know.
William Glenn Scott's (Glenn Shadix) memorial service was meant to be a celebration and a remembrance of his life. It is impossible to do that without grieving, and we knew that going in. All those who took part truly feel that it was the greatest honor to do so. Thank you to the family, and most of all, thank you to Glenn.
Glenn's family has suggested donations be made to Alabama School of Fine Arts new theater project. I would suggest, and I think Glenn would approve, making a donation to Covenant Community Church as well, because they went beyond the call of duty (with love) to serve this family.