On August 9th 2014 we held a memorial for my Mom (Marilyn Simper Shields) at Sundance Ski Resort, my home for many years. We had the wonderful people of Great Basin Wildlife Rescue bring a Great Horned Owl to be released into the wild in her honor. I found out on that day, that this beautiful little creature was actually hatched in March of this year, the month of my Mother’s birth. When Patty from the Rescue asked me if I wanted to release the Owl, I was all at once afraid and excited. Did I have the skill to be part of this experience? Then all at once excitement settled in and I knew it was just what Mom would have wanted. We choose the Owl for the Native American meaning of the guardian who takes the spirit from the direction of the West to the North, to once again be with Great Spirit after passing from this life. How perfect for Mom’s passing. The wonderful people from Great Basin gave me a very short instruction on holding the Owl and then I moved into position and the Owl was handed to me. He was so beautiful and fragile, not at all what I had expected. I got him into position in my arms with his feet in my hands and he immediately turned his head around to look into my eyes with his, for what surprisingly seemed to be for reassurance. I asked him if he was ready and felt and immediate bond to him, he turned his head back forward and with 1-2-3 of the family and friends behind me, released him into his new life. And Mom into hers. This will forever be a scared and blessed experience in my life.
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