by shawn lynch
(saint john , new brunswick , canada)
Without a shadow of a doubt, my grandfather is the single most influential person in my life. He was more than just my grandfather. He was my rock , my mentor, and I'm proud to say, my friend.
He was warm, loving, firm and straightforward. He had a way of accepting whatever came his way with no more than a shrug. His deep faith carried him through what life had to offer. He was seldom sick. He just wouldn't slow down.
My grandfather was a great man. He was a family man, a teacher, a volunteer, a soldier ,a firefighter , a fishermen and a gardener .
I spent parts of the summers at Nin and Bamps’s house when I was growing up, and I learned a lot from Grampie then. He had a quiet wisdom which is rare in the world today. He was almost humble to a fault. Grandpa never left any doubt how proud he was of me, but I’ll never match the skill he had working on motors and engines. He loved putting things together and taking things apart something im sure was passed down from him to me.
Ill remember the early mornings waking up with grampie, the warm sun comeing into the trailer from the front window , Humming birds eating from the feeders that hung near the window .... First thing first would be breakfast whis was always Oatmeal with brown sugar , bacon and eggs and toast with brown sugar sprinkled ontop . After breakfast it was time to clean ourselves up ..id wash my face and brush my teeth and just stood and watched in all amazement while he shaved with his electric razor and he would always at the end give me a liitle shave and put some aftershave on me , Gramp would not then just lay on the couch and let the day pass oh no there was far to much to do in the day for that .
Depending on what day it was we would take off to Sussex to go shopping or he would dissapear into the camp to work on things , i tried not getting in his way but just stood by quiet or chased butterfiles in the grass . Sometimes he would notice me and talk me over and he would show me waht he was working on and pass me the wrench so i could have a go , i would turn the wrench on the bolt and would be happy that it moved for me so i could be as stong as he was ( im sure now that im older he had loosened it for me just so i coukld be like him ) . Other times we would get into the truck and we would take off down a back country road and we would spend hours with me , himself and my grandmother picking blueberries where upon getting back i would have a bowl full with milk and sugar and at night we would relax watching tv with some Neapolitan ice cream.
We would go fishing alot gramp and i , we would walk out to the end of the garden that grew not far from the house and we would gather a bucket full of worms and would take a drive to the lake or to a small bridge that wasnt far from home and just spend the day fishing , he was by far a better fishermen then i was ... he put the worm on the hook and had a fish in no time and did so with ease .
Some people have a small garden in their backyard. My grandfather, on the other hand, had a small backyard surrounding his huge garden. He would grow tomatoes that would just melt in your mouth, Potatoes the size of your fist Pole beans that looked as if they were on roids , all the vegies that he grew alwyas tasted the best .
Sometimes we would take a week or two and we would go camping with the browns in cambridge narrows , we kids would take off to the lake while my grandparents would stay and chatwith friends , at night we would have bonfires and we would sit and listen as someone played gutair or sing blue grass .... man oh man dad my grandfather love blue grass .
I remember every summer without fail we would load up into the car with my aunt and the rest of the family and would attend a church service a Londonderry church onthe Old Shepody Road.
There were many more memories me and my granfather shared , and i keep them close to my heart.
I did not get to share a conversation of words with my grandfather on his deathbed, but I had a long conversation with him, woven throughout years. Our parting conversation had many parts, like the part where he took me on my first skidoo ride as a little boy, the part where he gave me his old buck knife, the part where I sat as man and was amazed at all this man has seen in his life . These were our parting words perhaps.For those who that knew him may he always be remembered as the remarkable man touched all of our lives and we are better for the experience.
It brakes our hearts to lose you,
But you didn't go alone,
Apart of us goes with you,
As god takes you home.
A million times we will miss you,
A million times we will cry,
If love alone could have saved you,
Im sure you never would have died.
So to the grave we travel,
The flowers will be placed with care,But no-one knows our heartache,
As we turn to leave you there.
If tears could build a starway,
And heartaches could make a lane,
We would walk a path to heaven
,And bring you back again.
my grandfather fell ( being 95 ) on April 1st and was in alot of pain so the care giver thought he may have broke his hip and called 911 .
they came and picked him up and took him they took some x-rays and it was found that he didn't break his hip so they told the family he would need 24/7 family care and gave him medication for pain and sent him home cause they didn't have enough beds .
Other than being in lots of pain he was fine for the next few days until Friday when the pain was too much and they took him back in only to be "told there was nothing wrong with him , just continue the pain meds and he will be fine in a few days "
he went to bed that night as normal but when my cousin went to wake him up the next morning he wouldn't wake up ... fearing he may be dead she called 911 and they came right away and the paramedics said he was still alive but unresponsive ( wouldn't open his eyes or verbulay respond ) and had laboured breathing .
he stayed unresponsive and had trouble breathing the rest of satuday ( april 7th , 2012 ) and didn't show any improvement into the night , he slept and woke up the next morning and passed away around 4:30 that day .
we buried him on friday ( april 13th ,2012 ) and its hurts alot to loose him ...he was my best friend , my hero