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“I’ll hold a good thought.”
That was what Dad said when he promised to pray for anybody. It was a way to remind himself and whoever he was talking to that there was much goodness in the turmoil of life and with prayer, a good thought could always be found.
He died early this morning at 4:30 a.m. California time. In the end there wasn’t much struggle. I spent a lot of time at his bedside in the last few days. I sang to him, songs that I hoped he heard and could enjoy, singing into his ear. I held his hand, his grip like an infant’s on a mother’s finger at times. I prayed prayers like the Lord’s Prayer and the 23rd Psalm. But most often my prayer for him was just “We love you, we love you, we love you.”
There will be a service this week out here in California. We will talk about his many achievements, but what he was always proudest of was his family. It is the treasure you leave behind. I hope he heard those words whispered in his ear, but he knew he was loved. In fact, the last words I heard him say, on my last visit home in January were: “Tell your wife that I am loved.”
I will hold that good thought.