We knew that my grandfather was not doing well. Over the last year or two his physical condition had detiorated to the point that he was probably not a happy person. My grandfather loved to ranch and if he was unable to, at the very least, get out and look at his ranch, then there may not have been much reason to continue forward.
My grandfather was a good man, I remember at least two summers where my older brother and myself stayed with our grandparents for a week. Some of my fondest memories of both of my grandparents were of during those two weeks. In one instance I recall staying with my mother’s parents for a week and my mother’s mother bought Ryan and I a baseball hat at Bealle’s the week that we stayed with them. We were transported to my father’s parents and while “working” outside for a period of time my grandfather asked me why I wore my baseball cap backwards (as an aside, I think it’s funny that I did this at such a young age and I’ve never broken this habit of wearing my baseball cap backwards). My response was that it kept the sun off of my neck, and of course I didn’t even consider that my face was beet-red. In all honesty, I always felt like I could never connect with my grandfather, but he was a quiet person and did not talk much and this was hard to accept as a child. Those weeks spent in South Texas did more for our relationship than any other time spent with my grandfather.
My last memory of my grandfather was when my wife and I went to visit both him and my grandmother last month at Hannah’s wedding reception. We had lunch with him and he paid the bills with my Uncle David. Despite is physical body failing him, his mind was as sharp as ever. That’s a good memory to have.
This is St. Louis Catholic Church on the evening of his service.
Across the street is the school where my father went to high school.
These were views from our motel.
This is the spire of St. Louis Church from our motel. It was a hazy morning, the day of the funeral.