Where do I start....Tuesday December 30th, 2008 started as any other day, I got dressed and headed out of the house to run errands before I opened the shop that day. I heard my cell phone ringing in the car and saw that my parents were trying to call me. I live out in the country and have spotty service so I couldn't pick up the call. I tried three times while I was on the road and still couldn't get the call through so I decided to wait until I got into town to call them back to see what they needed.
When I got into town and tried to call them back their phone was busy. I then pulled in to make my bank deposit for the shop just as I do every day and my phone rang, it was my 29 year old son. He said I needed to come home....it didn't register in my brain what he was saying and I asked him what was going on....then he said it.....Papaw is dead..........I couldn't believe what I was hearing My Dad Dead???? and I accused my son of making a sick joke, but he started bawling on the phone and I knew deep in the pit of my stomach something was dreadfully wrong. I peeled out of the bank and headed around the street where my parents lived hoping beyond hopes that this wasn't really happening... but there were what seemed to be tons of cars in front of my parents house and an ambulance....Oh dear God I then knew it was true.....my Dad was dead!
I raced up on the front porch only to look through the front door and see my fathers body still seated in his favorite chair in a very normal position with his socks still in his hand ( he was getting dressed to go out when he died). Even though I was seeing him with my very own eyes my brain wasn't computing the facts and my son grabbed me in his arms and we spent a while just sobbing.
I then went into the other room where my sister was consoling my mother. We all sobbed together for what seemed like awhile. According to my mom, she had just stepped away from Dad for a few seconds into the bathroom and when she stepped back out of the bathroom he was gone....just like the Bible says "in the blink of an eye."
Wow what a shock it has been to us all, we thought Dad would live forever, we never in a million years expected to lose him so soon. But thanks be to God that Dad was saved and we know he has gone on to his heavenly home and our parting is only temporary.
The outpouring of sympathy since his passing has been humbling, so many have called, many have fed us, sent us cards, sent flowers, donated money to the school on his behalf, wrote story's in the paper, and some have simply stood with us during this difficult time. Words cant express how much each person who has expressed their concern means to us. The number of people who came to the service was mind boggling, and the funeral had to be held up almost 2 hours to accommodate them all, we were very much comforted by all of them. Thanks to Pastor David and his church for all they have done for us, we love you very much.
Now we must go on and continue Dads legacy of love and compassion and caring.
We must all live like he did putting others before self so that his memory can live on through us.
We are Dads living legacy.
Thanks to all of you we will get through.