I went to a funeral yesterday. The man who had passed on was an old man, a man who had had a good life and a family who loved him. I've only known his since the earthquake. His daughter is the lady who was our hostess after the renter was destroyed. Her parents also came to stay at the same time. As our life settled into a new routine, this old man struggled on, never able to return to his home, not because his house was destroyed, but because his health was.
He suffered the first stroke in the first week following, like aftershocks, more strokes followed the first. It became clear that recovering from health and the earthquake was going to be a slow process, and as it turned out, impossible.
I wonder how many silent victims of the earthquake there are. People whose names we will never know, who would have lived a little longer if it hadn't occurred. The family and friends may know they were victims of the earthquake, but no one will acknowledge officially that they are.
A disaster of the magnitude we have had here in Christchurch produces a fair bit of unsung pain.