The Cold Penguin

expanding the box

An ode to a grandfather

on May 7, 2014

I know, I know.  Where have you been?  A lot has happened since I wrote you last.  I will catch you up on all the details, I promise!

But first, a dedication and an honor to one of the finest men I’ve ever known.

Last Wednesday April 30th, 2014, I lost my grandfather.

He would have been 93 had he lived just 20 more days.  And though it is sad we lost out on one more birthday celebration with him, you can not complain about 92 years of life!

He died somewhat suddenly.  While his mind has been slipping away for the past few years, his body was strong.  He had difficulty creating a new memory, but no problems moving about like so many his age had.  And he was in the hospital for less than 24 hours before he was gone.  So while we all new that in his 90s his time was nearing, it still came as a shock when we got the news that he had passed.

His funeral was over the weekend.  It was filled with many memories, prayers and tears, as all funerals are.  But what I took from this service was how everyone talked of his personality with a smile and admiration in their hearts.

The words “he always had a smile on his face” and “I never saw him angry” were constant among family members and friends.  And though I’m sure there were times he was angry, many of us never saw it.  Because most of the time, he was filled with joy, with laughter, and with love.

And my goodness, that’s how I want to be remembered!  Someone who enjoyed life, loved all, never complained but had a silly joke for everyone!  How special it is to have that kind of impression on people!?!

I will always love and miss my grandfather.  I can’t imagine the first family get together with out him.  I’m sure there were be many tears for our departed patriarch.

But what I can take solace in, and what we all take solace in, was that he lived his life to the fullest, had no regrets, and is now joking away with his family and friends who have passed on before.  I can just see him pulling pranks on his brothers, kissing my grandmothers hand lovingly once again, and of course, that smile and laugh fills the air around him!

In his death, he has become an inspiration to me.  I’ve always bragged about how wonderful my grandfather is to others.  That he loves to joke around, lives his life the way he wants to with no regrets, and loves with an open heart.  But until now, I didn’t realize that I should learn from the way he lived his life.

And I know that my grandfather would be proud of me no matter how I chose to live my life, I hope now he can see at least just some of him live on in me.  Because if we could all just have a little bit of the joy and love this man possessed, man would the world be a fabulous place!

memories

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