Thursday, January 25, 2007

My Granddaddy - Thursday Thirteen #3

Thirteen Things I remember and miss about my Granddaddy. He passed away 20 years ago this past December. I can picture him as clear as a bell. I can hear his voice and laughter. I miss him.

1. His laugh- He seemed to always be ready to enjoy the moment with his robust laughter.

2. His love of family - He seemed genuinely happy to be with all of us and enjoy our time together. He would do anything in the world for us and to help us. I remember one time he had broken ribs. I don't remember how he broke them. I was a teenager. We went to visit him and he was outside grilling. I snuck up on him and grabbed him from behind in a bear hug. He turned around and greeted me with a huge grin and hug. As I turned to walk away, I looked back and he was wincing. Only then did I remember his broken ribs! He hadn't wanted to show me that I had hurt him. He didn't want me to feel bad.

3. His effort to spend time individually with each of us- Granddaddy made an effort to be alone with each of us and give us one-on-one attention. We have a large family, but he always found time make us each feel important, loved, and listened to.

4. His singing - I loved to hear him sing. He sang like he did everything - with energy and full of life.

5. I remember him taking my brother and me across the street to a neighbors pond to fish. I don't know how many times we went - only a few - but I felt very big and very special to be with him.

6. His photography. He loved taking pictures and loved looking at photos. He taught me about centering your subject in the camera lens and making sure the lighting is right.

7. I remember many holidays when we had a stranger (at least to me) at our table. He would have invited someone less fortunate to join our family meal. It was a way of life.

8. He loved the Lord. It showed daily in all he did. He talked the talk AND walked the walk.

9. Pet names. He called me "Penny Lou." (It's a long story. My name is Lyn. My dad called me Lynnie poo. Granddaddy changed it to Penny Lou. Dad later changed it to Penny Loser.) He made up nicknames for all of us.

10. The relationship he had with my dad. It's strange to explain, but it made me happy to know that my Granddaddy and Dad (Granddaddy's son-in-law) had a close, loving relationship. They went to lunch together frequently (at least that's the way I remember it), talked a lot and were friends as well as family. With them both being ministers, I think they were each other's pastor and confidant.

11. I remember going to Michigan with him, Grandmother, my youngest uncle (who is only 5 years older than me), and his girlfriend (who is now my aunt). It was a great trip! We were camping and I can remember Granddaddy wanting us to come in for supper and yelling across the campground for us. We'd hear him and take off running. He'd be standing by the camper watching for us and laughing as we ran to meet him.

12. Going to the beach. Our huge family went together to the beach many years in a row. I don't remember how many years we went before he passed away - not enough. But I can picture him standing in the surf fishing. He was always in the middle of the action.

13. His strength. I always saw my granddaddy as a very physically strong man. I was always aware of his spiritual strength, too. As I've grown older, I've also grown to realize what inner strength he had as well - strong convictions, strong love of family, strong clear values, strong views of right and wrong. He left a strong heritage for me, my brother, and my cousins.

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Joan said...

What a beautiful reminder of all that we have to be grateful for. The security that comes from being loved and guided by someone of this caliber cannot be bought at any price.

Jessica said...

I wish I'd had the opportunity to know Grandshaw better, but I was so young when he died that I don't have any memories of him at all...but I love hearing stories about him.

Mom & Dad were talking about that Michigan trip fairly recently. I'd heard the story several times before, but it was new to Katie & Haley, I think.