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Sister's eulogy reveals Steve Jobs' family life and final moments

Mona Simpson's eulogy for her brother Steve Job has grabbed attention online for its intimate recollection of their time together, and the painfully frank details of his illness. Could you deliver a eulogy as candid as hers?
A customer walks past copies of Steve Jobs, by Walter Isaacson, at a book shop in Hong Kong Monday, Oct. 24, 2011. (Vincent Yu/Associated Press)

On Sunday, The New York Times published "A Sister's Eulogy for Steve Jobs," written by the Apple icon's sister Mona Simpson. Simpson read the eulogy at her brother's memorial service on Oct. 16 at the Memorial Church of Stanford University.

The 2,300-word essay has since grabbed attention online for its intimate recollection of their time together, and the painfully frank details of his illness.

Simpson herself is a novelist and professor of English at the University of California, Los Angeles.

She begins by recalling, as an only child with a single mother, her first meeting with Jobs. "Even as a feminist, my whole life I'd been waiting for a man to love, who could love me. For decades, I'd thought that man would be my father. When I was 25, I met that man and he was my brother."

Simpson paints a vivid picture of her brother as someone exceptionally dedicated to his work, but also full of affection for his family, wife Laurene and four kids. "When Reed was born, he began gushing and never stopped. He was a physical dad, with each of his children. He fretted over Lisa's boyfriends and Erin's travel and skirt lengths and Eve's safety around the horses she adored."

When discussing Jobs' declining health, Simpson recalls that his family "watched his life compress into a smaller circle." She describes his rehabilitation after a liver transplant in 2009, and, in painstaking detail, his final hours surrounded by his family.

"Steve's final words were: OH WOW. OH WOW. OH WOW."

What do you think of Mona Simpson's eulogy for Steve Jobs? Have you written a eulogy for a loved one? Would you include as many personal details as Simpson did?

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