Mother’s Last Words A Backhanded Compliment

84 year-old Los Gatos resident Shelby Cross died last Tuesday surrounded by her family at Good Samaritan hospital in San Jose, CA after a multi-year battle with lymphoma. The Cross family reported that she passed peacefully at approximately 2:30 PM, but not before dishing out some last words in the form of several backhanded compliments.


“Her last words to me were that my dress looked beautiful, especially ‘considering the circumstances.’” said Victoria Cross, Shelby’s oldest daughter.


“She told me my blouse did an excellent job of obscuring my stretch marks,” said cousin Jeanne.


“It’s sad to see mom go,” said Mark Cross, 55, Shelby’s only son. “I’ll miss the way she used to compliment me how well my Christmas tree fit in my house, as she didn’t think they grew trees that small.



The Good Samaritan medical staff, who had come to know Ms. Cross well in the months before her death, also had memories to share.


“She told me I was too pretty to be a doctor.” said Nurse Renee Gonzalez.


“She was a fighter until the very end.” said Dr. Lisa Brandt, who had treated Cross since her lymphoma diagnosis. “And by fighter I mean that we fought every day.”


The Cross family thanks Good Samaritan Hospital for the care they gave their late matriarch, saying “It was comforting to know that Shelby was in good hands, even if she couldn’t be in a pretty hospital.”