My dad passed away last Tuesday after a long battle with Alzheimer's and today we held services to celebrate his life. Yep, that's him, my mom and me when I was right about Ayden Jane's age. That's pretty much how I remember him from my childhood. He was the strong, silent type who loved and cared for his family, served his country, and laid a strong foundation for many things. The sort of man that this world needs more of: hard working, honest man with integrity and a desire to put others first. He had an iron will that I see in all his grand children, but especially in his kindred spirit, Ayden Jane.
Dad loved all his grandkids. He became much more talkative after he retired and most of what he had to say involved stories of his grandchildren. He was proud of them. He enjoyed them. I think his smile was bigger when he was with them.
As the years passed, Ayden Jane grew stronger and fought off PWS as grandpa weaker and struggled more. She began to care for, worry about and pray for him. She enjoyed the last church service he was able to attend.
At the memorial service today, there was opportunity for family and friends to come and share. I told Ayden Jane that opportunity would be coming but did not speak with her about what she might say. She told me she has something to share but didn't want to tell me what. So when it was her turn, Noah helped her with the microphone ect. (and I held my breath because, well, who knows what Ayden Jane might say) She proceeded to tell everyone that she enjoyed spending time with her wonderful, wonderful grandpa and said a few other things about how he remembered all of us, I couldn't quite hear. Then she proceeded to recite John 3:16 - For God so loved the world, He gave his one and only son that whoever believes in Him might not perish but have everlasting life.
Yep, that sums up what Grandpa would want everyone to know.