As I sit here reflecting upon the man that was my Grandfather, there are so many things that I remember which deserve to be noted. I will resign myself to list just a few for now. To put it simply, he was one of the greatest men I have ever known.
Grandma and Grandpa would come visit us often when we lived in the mountains of Arizona. In the mornings, over coffee/tea, they would sit down and tell me stories of their lives, for hours. All I had to do was ask a question and one of them would give an answer, with the other one clarifying and adding to the story with their own details. Their accounts of the WWII era were unique from one another, since they spent so much of their married life apart, with Grandpa overseas fighting for the America we know and love, and Grandma putting her life into the war effort here on the home front. They remembered incredible details of places, people, events, objects of their time period, feelings they had. Grandpa had an acute memory for detail and he could paint pictures with words. Their combined recollections of life were more significant, consistent and complete than any other history I learned from books. I will be forever grateful for their willingness to talk about their lives so openly. It changed my life forever.
Grandpa was convinced that he was married to the most lovely woman in all the world and I think few would have argued with him. She was absolutely the love of his life. He would tell her how wonderful she looked, sometimes even to her irritation. I loved to watch him love her.
Grandpa was incredibly observant. He loved the outdoors and things in nature and he would notice details in the things that God created. He had one of the sharpest minds I have ever known and it instilled in him a passion for so many things.
When Dad adopted us as his own children (we were approximately 5 years old when Mom and Dad married), Grandpa and Grandma adopted us as their own grandchildren. There was never a doubt in our minds about how much they loved us or cherished us as their own. I marvel at their ability to love other people so completely.
Grandpa, you are greatly missed... thank you for leaving behind the legacy of your life and your faith.