Friday, August 15, 2008

Remembering Dad

Thirty years ago today, our Dad at age 75, suddenly, without any warning, dropped dead and was instantly in the presence of his Lord, Whom he loved so deeply and served so well!

After thirty years, its like he is a dream we all shared. The vitality of his life has
lessened in our lives, yet in our mind's eye his memory remains precious!

Our Dad didn't know a stranger! He witnessed to everyone he ever met, started a kid's club at church when he was sixty eight, and had over one hundred kids every Wednesday night. He loved those kids, sent them to camp, wrote to them, called them, fed them and when he died, almost everyone of those kids were at his funeral.

He wrote missionaries regularly, corresponded with out of state grandchildren and wrote our kids when he was on a trip and sent letters to his kid's club kids--even when they had left the kid's club as they left their teens. He was a one finger typist, on an old portable Royal, and his letters were something to behold! He didn't have spell check and as long as the recipient could figure it out, that was all Dad cared about. He didn't have the patience or the time to stop and erase. (I still have some of his letters and they are treasures!)

The eighth child of fourteen, Dad had a hard life. He left home in his early teens, worked as a farm hand, herded sheep, had a stint in post WW I army, and some time in there began working for Safeway. He became a manager, then branched out and owned his own grocery store. Always a salesman, he eventually retired from a brokerage which handled gourmet foods.

He and Mom were married in 1931 and remained deeply in love all of their married life. They were a true example of what marriage is all about. Dad never had a problem helping in the kitchen, doing the dishes, presiding at his dinner table, often crowded with guests, and being part of the team, we knew as Mom and Dad.

Dad, age 28

Dad was highly opinionated, as I am, so he and I clashed mightily during my teen years. As the years passed, he mellowed, and I matured a little. After I had children and I had the privilege of experiencing my Dad as a grandfather, I learned to appreciate him with all of my heart.

When we lost our Dad we lost a mighty force in our family. Our children lost their wonderful grandpa who never missed one of their sporting events, and loved each of them unconditionally. He spent more time with the Portland grandchildren, but always visited the California grandkids once or twice a year, plus the California family came up he knew all of his grandchildren well.

Over the years that have passed, I have often longed for one more good visit with Dad--just to glean a little of his common sense wisdom. I have wished he could know my grandchildren. He would have gotten along so well with Elliot and enjoyed him. He would have loved playing games with Molly, as that was one of his favorite pastimes with the grandkids.

Dad and Mom had enjoyed the reading of I Corinthians 15 together that morning at the breakfast table. Some of the verses became very precious to us in the days that followed.

But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, "Death is swallowed up on victory. O death, where is your victory? O Death, where is your sting?'' But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, know that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.
verses 54, 55, 57, 58

And so, on this date, 30 years ago, as a shocked and grieved family, we said our good byes to our strong leader, faithful husband and father, and our Godly influence, we could say with the apostle Paul, "But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ..."

We were blessed!

I salute my Dad, whose name was simply Bud, today, in memory of all he was to me and all that his memory means to me.


Anonymous said...

That's beautiful....I'm in tears!! Carol

Ruthie said...

What a beautiful tribute to your dad. There is a lot of similarities in your dad to mine - and made me remember my very special dad, also.

My knee is doing some better. But still not sure if it will improve enough to go without surgery. Will have to wait and keep praying. Thanks for asking and for keeping me in your prayers.

I loved reading about your memories of cabbage patch dolls, too.

Have a great weekend.

Mary Isabella said...

You have touched my heart and soul with this beautiful post about one of Our Lord's special people and your wonderful Father....Have a great weekend....Mary

sister sheri said...

What a wonderful tribute to your Dad. I'm sure just blogging about him drew you closer to your memory of him.

Anonymous said...

Liked your tribute to Bud. Thought it was honest and painted a picture, not only of him as a person, but also your relationship to him.

From this observation point, finally we get the big picture of our parents....One thing that strikes me about our parents is their strength of character, and ther attitudes about life. Call them optimists, I don't know, but I don't remember whining or complaining, just doing whatever it was they had to do. They were certainly examples of the Greatest Generation.


Patty said...

What a wonderul trubute to your dad. It was beautiful, Joan.

Blessings this day to you,

Anonymous said...

what a blessing your father was. i love that he wrote missionaries and his grandchildren. i also love that he and your mom were so in love!!! what an amazing legacy to leave. you were truly blessed. and what a handsome lad he was!

HW said...

What a beautiful post about a beautiful man. He obviously touched many lives and continues to do so.

Amy said...

Beautiful. Very beautiful.