Thursday, October 10, 2013

A Parent's Death Anniversary

These posts are hard to write.

What I really wish I could do instead is this ...

This Saturday, October 12, 2006 marks the 7th anniversary of my father's death.

Our last family picture with my dad.

hree months and four days after this picture was taken, my father passed away from cancer.

He had been classified as being in remission only one month earlier, after battling bladder cancer for about 18 months (if my memory serves me correctly.)

Bladder cancer usually is considered a smoker's cancer.  My father never smoked.

To shed any light on  my father's character,  to know the very depths of his soul,  you would need to read the lyrics to this beautiful song ::

The Servant Song

1. Brother, let me be your servant.

Let me be as Christ to you.

Pray that I might have the grace

To let you be my servant, too.

2. We are pilgrims on a journey.

We are brothers on the road.

We are here to help each other

Walk the mile and bear the load.

3. I will hold the Christ-light for you

In the night time of your fear.

I will hold my hand out to you;

Speak the peace you long to hear.

4. I will weep when you are weeping.

When you laugh, I'll laugh with you.

I will share your joy and sorrow

Till we've seen this journey through.

5. When we sing to God in heaven,

We shall find such harmony

Born of all we've known together

Of Christ's love and agony.

(Repeat Verse #1)

You can click here for a you tube version of this beautiful song.

Oh...  it is impossible not to cry when we sing this song at Mass!

(We had that song sung at my father's funeral Mass.)

My father died a "Good and holy death" not to be confused with a pain free and easy death.  He had continuously received the sacraments of healing and passed away at home surrounded by his family.

I love the headstone my mother had chosen.  The cross and wedding rings image was taken off of their wedding invitations 51 years ago.

My parents had always been open to life and were blessed by receiving a large family.

I constantly find myself wondering what he would think of this...or that...

Our move to Texas...
Sweet  baby Clementine... he'd just LOVE that nick name for her.
I know he'd have fascinating conversations with Stan...
And to see Sally swim....
And Mabel and Ester ride horses and take part in TKD.
He'd be tickled pink about how well and how far we've come in home schooling...and that I'm teaching Confirmation to 8th graders.

I never wonder what he thinks of my mom though, for I know he'd be so very proud of her!  She has been such a lady in her grief and pain intermingled with the love and joy she has for their children and grandchildren.

If only that telephone to Heaven existed...

I truly miss and love you, Dad.

 Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord.
 And let perpetual light shine upon him.
 May he rest in peace.

May his soul and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.



  1. Oh, Patty! This made me cry. Don't you know that he is up there, smiling and being so proud of what a wonderful mother and woman you are!

  2. Prayers for you, your mom, your siblings, and all his grandkids! I know too well the wishes and what ifs. May he rest in peace.

  3. Oh Patty...This is beautiful.
    I can feel the ache in your heart.
    I can also feel the love.
    That headstone is the most beautiful one I have ever seen. Really.
    And you, my dear friend, are a living, breathing testament to your father.
    And that makes him a great, great man.
    Cyber hugs. : )

  4. I have a lump in my throat...and I love "The Servant Song". Thinking and praying for you, dear friend!

  5. Hi Patty! This hymn was our former pastor's favorite, and we sang it often. I'll think of you now, and your Dad whenever we sing it.

    I have never seen a headstone with the names of all the children on it...what a beautiful idea. You were all his 'flowers' and what better thing to have in a cemetery, but these special flowers?

    You KNOW he is with you and your kids too, but I know what you mean about wanting him here in the flesh. My Mom is gone now, and I wish she could see my daughter be an awesome Mom herself.

    Prayers for you and yours today, that our hearts will heal, but never forget.

  6. Your writing and that Servant Song is a beautiful tribute...You are carrying on beautifully in his shoes, my friend! Thank you for being such a Godly example for all of us here in the bloggy world. Peace be with you....

  7. This is beautiful Patty! God Bless you and your family.

  8. This is such a touching tribute to your father. I can't imagine the pain of losing a parent. Your dad sounds like such an amazing guy! I always get a little sad when the anniversary of my uncle's death comes around. Praying for you and your family during these days!

  9. Now, I'm crying. I was just looking for Servant Song not to be confused with The Servant Song, which is yours, but of course, I listened to both yesterday trying to find the first one. Now I, too, will think of your father when I hear both. You know that he is with you now all the time, just say his name and instantly he is there. I'm so happy for you that he was able to be there for Stan, he looks the youngest in that picture....what a blessing for him to see his youngest grandson. This was a beautiful post Patty, you all and your father are in my prayers...

  10. This is just beautiful, Patty. I can feel the love in your words.

  11. I'm really, really sorry for your loss. My father also died last month and until now, I'm still lost. I even wrote a post about how I feel:

    I'm not really sure how to deal with this. Any tips will be appreciated. Thank you.


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