Why might the author have chosen "Weatherall" as an appropriate surname for Granny?

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Granny Wetherall has encountered many challenges during her long, hard life. One might say she's weathered many storms. Whatever life's thrown at her, she's always managed to get through it—outwardly, at least. Because inside she's been tormented by the traumatic events of that terrible day, many years before, when she was left standing at the altar by her would-be bridegroom. That such a defining moment in her life preoccupies and torments Granny Weatherall on her deathbed makes a mockery of her name, with all its connotations of strength and the tough public persona she's developed through years of hard struggle.

For although the old woman's surname may be appropriate for how she's lived her life, for the public face of indomitability and flinty resolve she's presented to the world, it's woefully inadequate to describe her inner life, the depths of her tortured soul.

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As she lies on her deathbed, Ellen "Granny" Weatherall reflects on her life. She is a woman around eighty who has faced many challenges.

She remembers her daughter Lidia coming to her for parenting advice and her son Jimmy asking her for business advice. She thinks of her late husband, John, and how she would like to point to their children and tell him that she has done a good job of raising them on her own. Granny Weatherall calls to mind the endless sewing and cooking she did for her family and how she took on the farm chores after John's death. She recollects memories of sick people that she nursed as well as her own serious illnesses. A particularly painful memory for her is that of the disappointment of being jilted on her wedding day by a man named George. She also thinks of her daughter Hapsy who has died.

What Katherine Anne Porter meant in naming her "Weatherall" is that she is an aged woman who has faced life's challenges head on and weathered all of them.

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