Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Dad passed away this morning

I regret having post that my dad passed away this morning, officially pronounced at 8:25am.

I rejoice in more, though: He died with no suffering or struggling, peacefully slipping from sleep into eternity. My brother & sister-in-law were with him, so he was not alone. He's probably singing with J.D. Sumner & Jimmy Blackwood & a bunch of his other quartet heroes right now. The memorial service will probably be the morning or afternoon of Saturday May 13 (in classic Dad fashion, on a date & time that doesn't interfere with a quartet convention, concert, or the opening of any of the major hunting or fishing seasons).

My mom's the one to pull for today. I was convinced that Denise was going to die a few times. As abysmal as I felt in just thinking my spouse was going to die, my mom's crossed that line and must feel worse. The worst day of her life, no doubt.

I'm still good with all this. Everything got said, no regrets in the relationship, he was happy to be visited & called by so many friends (and hear the emails), and he told my brother & I about any loose ends to tie up for him. Nothing left to worry about. The last time I asked him if he was scared, he still said "Nope." All this pours new understanding into the phrase, "It is finished."

He told a friend (and the other day also told Denise) that he only did the chemo because he wanted to be around long enough to see her get better. I'm glad that he got to accomplish that. Today marks nine months to the day that Denise started her hospital stay.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heaven has one more angel as of today, that is something we can all rejoice in. God bless your family.
The Santa Barbara crew

April 18, 2006 11:54 AM  
Anonymous Beki said...

God bless you, Phil, and your mom and everyone. You all will be in my prayers.

April 18, 2006 12:14 PM  
Anonymous Marcia said...

Bless you and your family, Phil. I am glad to hear that such a good man was able to go to the Lord without fear and with no unfinished business here. What a gift.

April 18, 2006 12:48 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

Phil: I'm so sorry to hear of your loss, but I'm glad to hear of your Dad's faith and lack of fear. My prayers are with you and your family today. My God bless and comfort all of you.

April 18, 2006 12:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dick is singing with the heavenly hosts today. May God bless and confort all of you!

April 18, 2006 2:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heaven is rejoicing at the arrival of a saint...God bless and comfort each of you and especially your mom.

I will keep you in my prayers.

Athens, GA.

April 18, 2006 3:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

All of our collective arms are around your mom and your family. What a blessing to see the acceptance in your father. No fear because he knew he was going Home and he was prepared and ready. God bless all of you. My love and prayers are yours.

April 18, 2006 7:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dick was a long time Tip Topper friend from the 60's. My husband and myself loved him. He did finish his work here on earth and was ready. I will sorely miss him and his e-mails. Maybe he'll be able to teach my husband a thing or two about singing. I know my Dick is in heaven too. God bless you all.

Mary Engstrom

April 19, 2006 1:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(((Phil))) Bless you and your family during this difficult time.

April 19, 2006 6:10 AM  
Anonymous Cindy Wert said...

Phil & family...so sorry for your loss, but find comfort in the fact that he did not suffer in his last hours. Please know that we all rejoice in Denise's homecoming and wish we could all be there on "celebration" day. Love to all of you...Cindy

April 19, 2006 6:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I haven't posted before, but have been following this saga since last summer when my friend Lori Luyten sent the link and asked us to pray.

And we have been praying.

May God give extra grace and strength - especially to your Mom - during this difficult time.

Danae Olsen, Powell Wyoming

April 19, 2006 7:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

May God bless you and your family. I am very sorry to hear about your loss, but I rejoice in the fact that your Dad felt as though he finished everything he needed to. That can be very comforting to know. I will keep you all in my prayers, but I will pray an extra special prayer for you mom and her deep loss. Praise God for His strength, love, and compassion. He will help you all through this difficult and painful time.
Your Friend, Sandy Valdez

April 19, 2006 4:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now Daniel has his Grandpa to keep him company in heaven. How cool is that to get to hang out with your Grandpa & Jesus at the same time???
-Debbi (Deming) Lowther

April 19, 2006 4:57 PM  
Blogger Larry Dancer said...

All of us who know Dick, especially, Ralph Dean, and his son knows; to put on a major production, like an Eternal Gospel Convention, One needs a very professional staff & crew!! When I get there, just like here, as I'm walking up to those gates, I'll be looking for brother Dick. I know that God called him 'cause St. Peter requested help maning the Pearly gates. I expect to see him checking tickets and passing out programs, saying, 'Howdy! Just, Come on In'!!
Larry Dancer

April 19, 2006 10:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Denise,
I am Coalinga Unified's Asbestos Inspector. I have known your mother for the past 12-14 years.
When I heard of your illness, I placed your name on the Sunday School prayer list. This week is the first time that I have seen your mother at work since your illness. May God continue to heal and bless you and your family.
The lessons that I have learned in my walk with God is, he is always near and has your interest at heart. He is good and merciful. God is our hope.
In the name of Christ our savior,
Robert Liddell

April 20, 2006 11:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bless you Phil and family. Our prayers for daily peace and wisdom and grace. Underneath are the everlasting arms. Jesus knows.

Diane James

April 20, 2006 11:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He is in a better place right now... no more pain, no more suffering, no more tears...
God bless you and your family..

April 21, 2006 11:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Phil,
Not quite sure what to say. I keep writing and erasing. Praise God for the wonderful man your dad was/is. I use the present tense because we can have confidence that your dad has conquered death through his salvation in Jesus. May God continue to be your blessing, strenghth and healer as you greive and rejoice. Your strength is an inspiration and it sounds like that strenght is your dad's legacy that will live on in you and your children and your generations to come. How blessed you are to have had such a teacher. David, Sydney and I continue our prayers for you and your family.
with love through Christ our risen Lord, Stephanie (an old friend from Duarte Fellowship)

April 22, 2006 2:45 PM  

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