New York Times Portraits of Grief
Mommy, it broke my heart when Daddy died because he was a good snuggler," said 4-year-old Elizabeth Cosgrove.
She was speaking of her father, Kevin M. Cosgrove, who was vice president of claims at Aon. Wendy Cosgrove simply held her daughter close and said, "I know."
Mr. Cosgrove, 46, of West Islip, N.Y., did a great balancing act between work and home, Mrs. Cosgrove said. He could often be seen shoveling the walks of elderly widows in winter and helping elderly couples carry bulky packages throughout the year, she said.
But he especially liked to indulge his children: Brian, 12; Claire, 10, and Elizabeth.
" `Mommy, Daddy let us eat dinner backward,' the kids used to say to me when I would come home after they had spent a day with him," Mrs. Cosgrove recalled with a chuckle. "We ate brownies and ice cream before dinner. I would tell him that it made me look like the bad guy because I made them eat dinner. It was funny."