There was far more laughter than tears at the memorial service for T. "Tracy" Edward Page on Saturday morning. Which was fitting, friends and family agreed, as they shared countless laughs with Page when he was alive.
“He was the only person who kept me laughing for 37 years,” Kevin Swanson, Page's husband said.
The prominent attorney's memorial service was held at the M.L. McClelland Masonic Lodge in Hobart, a place that Page loved dearly and recently had a huge hand in remodeling.
Scott McEuen, secretary for the M.L. McClelland lodge, said Page was passionate about the fraternity, traveling to lodges everywhere and making countless friends along the way. When it came to Page and people, he said “you spend five minutes with him and you're his best friend.”
“The fraternity is a lot less with his loss,” McEuen said. “Had he lived longer, it's hard to tell all he would've accomplished... He was a fireball of energy, there's no other way to put it.”
M.L. McClelland lodge officers and the Grand Lodge officers from Indianapolis led the ceremony in full regalia, honoring Page's legacy and love for the fraternity.
A broken column was placed in the chair Page use to sit, symbolizing a life lost too soon.
“His life was taken, by a man who put his arms around his shoulders in friendship, and then he put a gun to his chest and pulled the trigger,” Paul Page, Tracy Page's brother said. “Tracy died instantly. That act not only killed my brother, but ripped at the heart of Kevin, his partner for 37 years who tried to save him, and his family and hundreds of friends, and the brotherhood.”
Paul Page spoke at the service, chronicling his brother's quirks and telling stories that filled the room with laughter. From Page and Swanson's epic Halloween lawn décor to Page tumbling off of a rapel tower while volunteering for the Eagle Scouts, there was no shortage of color when describing the late attorney's life.
“Tracy sought out people to love,” Paul Page said. “When he saw someone he didn't know, he would head straight for them and make friends. No hesitation at all ... but it didn't stop there. Tracy would do little things for others, such as sit with a close friend's mother everyday while she suffered from Alzheimer's, or do taxes for free for friends. Small things, tokens of his friendship he gave out. He took joy in all of it. Victor Huge once wrote, 'To love another person is to see the face of God.' Well, Tracy is seeing God's face right now.”
Page was raised to the degree of a Master Mason on May 27, 2015. In the Scottish Rite Valley of South Bend, he was given the position of a High Priest of Jerusalem. At the time of his death, Page was the Worshipful Master of the M.L. McClelland Masonic Lodge #357 in Hobart.
“He was very wise, he would always point me in the right direction,” John Kravis, a third degree master mason at the lodge said. “I wouldn't be the man I am today without him. .. He added a sense of inclusiveness and oneness that can never be matched.”
David Miller, former master at the Indiana Harbor Lodge, knighted Page in 2015, and will miss his colorful interjections at meetings. Miller said at the start of every meeting, the officiator would ask if any members had announcements.
“Tracy would stand up and say, 'I just want you all to know I'm level 28 in Pokemon,” Miller recalled. “The next week, he'd stand up and announce he was level 32, then 36 and so on. Last time he spoke about it, he collected all of the Pokemon, and was Level 40.”
At the ceremony, a floral wreath sported a Pokemon “Poke' Ball” and “Magikarp,” Page's favorite Pokemon.
“I would be driving, and we'd have to pull over so Tracy could catch Pokemon or go near a stop,” Swanson said. “He'd have two phones in his hands playing the game, and we'd be driving all around in the city.”
Page's wake was at the Geisen Funeral Home in Crown Point Friday evening, and was well attended by members of the law community, both local and statewide.
“Last night I feel like I met every lawyer, judge and prosecutor in the area, and they all had a story about Tracy to tell,” Paul Page said.
From Page's old Eagle Scout sash full of badges, to his long list of Masonic titles and regalia, to career accolades, to a full index of Pokemon — Page pursued his passions wholeheartedly. His biggest passion self-evident, from the crowds of friends and family who gathered Friday and Saturday to wish him farewell.
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