"She liked this year's team," says Everett. "She liked the youth. She said, 'Maybe that Wilson's going to be a good pitcher.' "
I peer into Elva's bedroom and see her Spartan bed, a calendar for Cubs games and, stuck to a wall, her high school graduation speech from 1895 and a letter from Purdue basketball coach Gene Keady (she loved the Boilermakers, too), and I feel as though I know the woman.
I say goodbye to the Klings and start to drive off, and then I turn down the road toward the graveyard. It's late afternoon and the Cub game will be starting soon on WGN, but I want to take in the serenity of this place one more time.
Elva Kling Reyburn watched until the seventh inning of this year's All-Star Game, told Pat Kling she didn't feel well, and died three hours later. I want to tell Elva now that the Cubs have a chance this year, that Andre has found new spark in those creaky knees. But I'm sure she knows that. She knew it early on. She died when she did because she saw the Cubs were flirting with the impossible, and she knew that if they won it all she would never survive the shock.
Rest in peace, Elva. The game goes on.