He <would, used to> get up every morning at 6.30.

arturolczykowski

Senior Member
Polish
If I speak about a person's custom/habit and that person is not alive any more should I use the form "he used to get up every morning at 6.30" or "he was getting up every morning at 6.30" ?
 
  • elroy

    Imperfect Mod
    US English/Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    You could also use the simple paste tense ("He got up..."), but not the past progressive ("He was getting up...).
     

    Dimcl

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    If I speak about a person's custom/habit and that person is not alive any more should I use the form "he used to get up every morning at 6.30" or "he was getting up every morning at 6.30" ?
    Another word often used in this context is "would" (which might explain your question about using "was"). It is often used in this way:

    "My grandpa died 10 years ago and I still miss him. He would get up with me in the morning and we'd have breakfast. Then he would take me outside to play for a little while. He would teach me the names of the birds we saw in the backyard."

    Frankly, I'm not sure that this use of "would" is even correct but you hear it so very frequently that I wouldn't even question its use.
     
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