Good natured, easy going, intelligent, kind, generous, loved life, loved a good conversation, independent, disciplined. These are the characteristics that come to mind when I think of Granddaddy.
What a sharp mind. When he would come back from a vacation he really enjoyed, he recounted more factual details two weeks later than I would have noticed if I were there. He loved being active – he enjoyed his pool and his yard– even in his elderly days. While I don’t know what the past 9 years without Grandmommy were like for him, I have no doubt he still took great pleasure in life. He may have had his times of loneliness and disappointment, but who would ever know? He was a quiet man who probably kept a lot to himself. He seldom complained, maintaining self-control and a positive outlook on life.
Because of his style and substance, he had more influence on his two daughters in spiritual matters than his religious wife did. He had little concern about or belief in God as I understood him. Yet he accompanied Wren to every church service (she called them “meetings”) that she ever attended. He was faithful like that, even lacking a religious faith himself. He was above all, loyal, sometimes, from my perspective, painfully so. He is more of a “throwback” than I am, and I use that term in the most positive way. He learned most of these qualities as a boy on the farm in upper state New York – an increasingly rare experience. His highest values were faithfulness to his wife, loyalty, honesty, self-discipline, and personal responsibility. He was easy to be with - a friend. His style and substance were near the upper echelons of those I’ve known. Most others’ pale in comparison, including my own.
He has great surprise and thrill in store when he finds himself in the midst of Heaven counseling the rest of us not only about our taxes, but how to be a good, decent human being. I will have much more to learn from him.
Passed through to paradise on Wednesday, June 29, 2005