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For the Memory…

This isn’t a post about design.

On Saturday my sweet, wonderful Grandfather, Jack, passed away.  At 96 years old, he had lived a full and happy life.

Although it is a painful time, I feel so blessed to have known him and to have shared many experiences with him.  He was a humble man, and great example of someone who loved unconditionally.

I love him very much, and I wanted to honor him in my own, albeit, small and simple way.

He worked as a special agent for the US Treasury Department.  After retiring, he spent the majority of his time traveling with my Grandmother, Ruth (who passed away a few years ago), fishing, and spending time with us – his grandchildren.  I have fond memories of summers spent swimming at their home in Salt Lake City or picking berries in their garden.

It’s interesting how time sweetens those thoughts.

Over the holidays, he was rushed to the hospital.  It was a scary time, but also a blessing – for selfish reasons.  I was so grateful that R and I were able to be in town, close by, while this happened.

We spent a lot of time visiting the ICU, and had many tender experiences.  It was during these last few days that I truly realized what an amazing man my grandfather was.  He opened up to us about some the special experiences he had while volunteering at the hospital (Something he did while he was in his 70s and 80s – he volunteered weekly at the hospital, visiting patients – logging a total of over 2500 volunteer hours).  He talked about sacred things and his desire to serve others.

One of the last days he was in the hospital was a tough one.  He had been given a feeding tube that ran through his nose.  The tube kept getting blocked, and the doctors had to replace it three times in one day.  It was very painful for him.  That afternoon, he was not in good spirits.  He said that he didn’t want to go on living like this (coming from a man who had lived independently up until about 9 months ago, I can understand why).  It took all the mental strength I had not to just pick him up and cradle him in my arms.

Later that evening, he called my mom and asked if we would all return to the hospital.  I will never forget the first thing he said when we walked into the room.  “I’m sorry for being so selfish.  All I’ve been doing is complaining about me.  I want to do something for you.  I want to serve people.”

Wow.

I will miss him.

I will aspire to be as selfless and loving as he was.

I love you, Grandpa Jack.

Tiina 

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Grandpa Jack

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3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Kaar #

    Thank you for keeping grandpa alive through memories. I love him and will miss him dearly.

    January 21, 2013
  2. annekemcconnell #

    I am so sorry for such a great loss…what a legacy he has left for you and your family. We’ve had these same struggles in our family the past few years as well. {hopping over from Bliss-at Home}

    January 22, 2013
    • Thank you so much, Anne. It’s been difficult, but we feel blessed that we had such a special person in our lives, as I’m sure you can relate. So sorry for your loss as well.

      T

      January 22, 2013

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