I randomly came across this photo on my phone this morning. It’s the last photo I have of my grandpa. He went into hospice two weeks ago. His heart was continuing to weaken and his oxygen levels were too low to be managed by the equipment nurses could bring to the farm. The lack of blood and oxygen were making him confused and unable to speak. He did better in hospice, but as we all know, you don’t enter hospice to get better. He passed away Wednesday morning.
I have no problem saying that I was blessed and spoiled by amazing grandparents, especially my mom’s parents. Where my brothers and I often experienced bullying, rejection or teasing in our day-to-day lives, my grandparents made us feel loved and important effortlessly. They were so proud of us, and loved us no matter what was going on in our lives. My grandfather was especially proud when we bought our house because the great American dream he worked so hard to achieve could move forward.
I’ll miss him terribly, but am comforted to see him in the faces of my family and people I’ve surrounded myself with. It’s funny how you gravitate to people who remind you of the people you love the most. He requested his favorite big band music be played for his visitation and funeral, so I thought I’d do the same for him here.
Möge dir dein Weg leicht werden
Möge dir der Wind immer von hinten kommen
Möge dir die Sonne warm ins Gesicht scheinen
Möge dir ein sanfter Regen auf die Felder fallen
und bis wir uns wiedersehen
möge Gott dich in seiner Hand halten.
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Dear Jessica, I am so sorry for your loss. It aches to lose a family member like that; one who has loved you so completely and unconditionally. I began to cry–and tears are still rolling down my face as I write this–when you said he requested his favorite big band music for the visitation and funeral; we did that for my husband’s father’s visitation. The funeral home had awful, dirge-like music coming through the speakers, and the siblings couldn’t abide that–the eldest brother-in-law put together a cassette (that’s how long ago it was) of big band music, and tucked a boom-box away behind a potted palm. It was so perfectly right for him!! It started everyone reminiscing and telling stories and became an incredible celebration of his life.
Yeah, I think he knew they played dirge music, and it was funny to hear big band piped through the entire funeral home, even the bathrooms. It was like he was everywhere but nowhere specific, and that made things easier to bear, especially the viewing of his body. Men like that are rare these days, but I’m happy to have one, and you’re lucky enough to have two 🙂
Jessica, our prayers are with you and Neil. May you find comfort in knowing that Grandpa is comfortable now.
Thank you so much Liz. He is comfortable now, and that’s such a relief to my family and I.
I’m sorry for your loss bff. I’m sending as many positive thoughts as I can muster to you my love. If there is anything that I can help with or do, please call me. Love you! Giant hug from Springfield! <3
Love you bff! There might be a road trip in our future if you are interested.
Beautiful photo. Beautiful stories. Beautiful memories. I’m so sorry for your loss and thinking of you and your family. <3
Thank you so much Chrissy!
what a wonderful tribute! Sounds like you had an amazing grandpa. What a privilege to have him in your life for so long. I wish strength and peace for you and your family in this time of mourning.
I was really lucky to have my grandparents for so long. The first one passed away in 2005, so it really was a blessing.
Awww, I’m so sorry for your loss. It’s devastating to lose someone you love. I lost my grandpa on my dad’s side a few years ago, and it was hard for me to say good-bye.
Your grandpa sounded like an amazing person. I’m listening to his Big Band request right now. Classy.