Goodbye, Gene

Until we meet again, Gene.

It’s been two years since you went to Heaven.

I have many reasons to thank you for loving me.

You were a matchmaker. You prompted Mike to ask me out in 1993. Less than a year later, you suggested Mike and I get married sooner than later, an opportunity we wholeheartedly embraced!

For more than 20 years, you loved me as a daughter.

You cherished our children as only Granddad could.

You savored good food. You taught me that a side of grits makes a meal complete.

We didn’t always agree. We made each other angry. Two Type A tigers are tough to tame. You called me Boss Lady, and I’m not sure you meant it in a nice way. 😉

There were deep hurts to work through. But we made our peace in this earthly journey, and I’m grateful for His healing in our relationship.

It was a long brave battle with Alzheimer’s and cancer, and you were a warrior.

It was my privilege and honor to care for you and Nancy, your beloved bride.

When the cancer took your booming voice and we talked only in whispers, we spoke face to face to understand one another.

In your last few weeks on earth, you couldn’t remember my name, but you affectionately called me “daughter-in-law”.

You clung tightly to life in your final six days at the hospice house. That Marine toughness never left you.

On the day before you died, I held your hand and read through Psalms with you, sunlight streaming through the picture window, basking us in warmth and comfort.

You waited on our Tennessee family to arrive before you began your Sunday ascent to Heaven.

I whispered in your ear, “they are all here now, so it’s okay for you to go.”

I think you needed a going Home party.

Half an hour later, you took your last breath, your frail body blanketed in loving hands and tear filled prayers. The hymn Fairest Lord Jesus took you to glory.

You loved us all so well.

You believed nothing was stronger than God’s will.

You are missed.

Until we meet again, Gene.

I love you.