My dear, beloved Rock of the family. My Grandfather.
My grandpa is, was, and will be the only man I know who could look at me and see right through me. He KNEW me! He loved me and I loved him beyond everything man, material, cosmic, and heavenly.
He led a very long, experienced and good life. He was born in Indiana if I recall correctly, he served in the Navy where he met his long time wife, love, and pain in his ass my grandmother. He would goat her like no one’s business, life to him was to be enjoyed. They met when she was young, she was 16 and he was 23, and on a blind date, arranged by her friend. Grandma said it was love at first site! Grandma and Grandpa have five children, 10 grandchildren, and nine great grandchildren.
Grandpa loved life and said if life was not enjoyed by you, it was not worth living. He told me that once when I was a little girl when we were handling his horse and that statement has stuck with me ever since.
He had many horses actually. He is and was my original cowboy. If ever you thought of a cowboy he was THE ONE. Rough, soft hands, tall and lean, strong and wiry. He was stern and gentle, sweet and saucy, mean and quiet all at once. You could smell the sweat and dirt on his Stetson (I can still recall the smell to this day), manure and dirt on his boots, the smell of the warm denim of his jeans, the leather from his chaps and saddle, the smell of a pipe or a cigarette lingering in his shirt mingled with the warm smell of cologne, a Polo brand. He was something to be reckoned with and a sight to see. I have only seen him angry once and he was never a man to fear, he was a man who demanded a sort of respect I have not seen to this day.
Grandpa had a story for everything. He was the man of the hour to take you on his lap, tell you all you needed to know about baseball and basketball, Horses and cars, life, men, and women. He was so wise beyond his years. He was not perfect but he was perfect to me. He loved his family like none other, family is, was, and will always be his life. He was my life. I could spend hours staring into his bold blue eyes, the eyes that never faded or changed with age, they were electric, all knowing, all loving, and you could always see his spunk.
I carry an immense amount of guilt though with his passing yesterday (October 17, 2009). All week I meant to email my grandmother to find the right time to come see him where he would not be uncomfortable. His health had deteriortated rapidly from when I saw him at Christmas. So a visit would almost incapicitate him, so I wanted to schedule time where I would leave the kids at home. Where I could have time with him alone as I knew this would upset his schedule. I never sent the email. I never got to see him one last time. I am riddled with guilt, at a loss. I wanted to tell him how much I loved him, how he was my rock for the last 31 years, that I would be lost without him but I knew I would take his strength, his love to conquer all that I have. That because of him I have never lost sight, I always went for the impossible, I made the impossible possible because he knew I could do it. He told me never let anything get in the way of something profound and meaningful in your life.
Grandpa knew I had an unbridled fury for life and for exploring life. Grandpa and I were and are one in the same. We shared our secrets, he never judged and we knew how important we are and were to one another, how he still is my eternal love, he is the most genuine being I have ever met. Everything he said he meant, he used his words wisely. He taught me that I could be a lady, a girl, a woman, a mother, a tom-boy, and always be beautiful. He taught me to dance and to love Sinatra, he taught me to dance to Sinatra (Luck be a Lady) and the man could dance like a pro, as if he had clouds under his feet.
My dear Grandpa Dan, I know you are at peace, but selfish me wants you back, to give you your breath and take away the hurt and pain for one more day to spend with you, but in the words of Frank, you always did it your way!
I love you, your oldest Granddaughter, Kare Babe.
19 Replies to “He Hung and Roped the Moon”
Karie, I am so sorry for your loss. It is so difficult to lose a grandparent who has been so dear to us!
This is a beautiful tribute and I'm sure you will always consider yourself very blessed to have had him in your life for so long!
God's peace be with you and your family!
I am so sorry for your loss! Please don't let the guilt overtake you, I'm sure that he knew how much you loved him even if you didn't get to see him one last time.
May you find all the peace you can right now – he sounds like a great man
Oh Karie, I am so terribly sorry. Every one of us feels that guilt over the woulda coulda shoulda's.
Big hugs to you, my sweet friend.
Please rest assured that there were no words that you could have said that he didn't already know. The love you had was something that you shared, and there is not a single doubt in my mind that as he was passing he was thanking God for having you in his life.
Oh I am so so sorry for you loss. Losing your Grandpa is a hard one..
Hugs to you and yours.
I am so very sorry to hear of your loss.
Grandfathers are such beautiful beings…and seems like you had a beautiful relationship. Here's to the memory of your cowboy.
Im so sorry for your loss sweet girl. Im quite sure he knew of your love for him and he will take it with him to his new beautiful Home
Karie, I am so, so, so sorry for your heartache and your loss! Your Grandpa sounded like a great, kind, and loving man, and I'm sure that he knew how much you loved him! Take care, friend! (((HUGS)))
Your post was wonderfully written. I'm sorry for your pain. He sounds like a good man.
sorry for your loss but as you know he is in a kinder place free of pain! we should rejoice for the life he was given and the wisdom he shared. but yes we are selfish and never quite see it this way. Hugs all the way from Malta
I am really sorry for this. He sounds amazing, I wish I'd had a grandpa like him. You were both very lucky to have each other, I'm glad you have all those wonderful memories. x
So sorry to hear of your loss. So often we think that someone has gone away forever just because they are no longer physically with us. I can tell that he made a great impact upon your life and that all the experiences you have had with him will remain with you the rest of your life.
I'm so sorry to hear about your grandfather. What a wonderful post you wrote about him. Sounds like you will have many happy memories.
Sounds like he was a great guy. You got to enjoy each other, and have a strong relationship which is something a lot would love to have. I know that is something that made each and everyday for him no matter what happened…
Your tribute to your grandpa has me in tears. What an extraordinary man, and relationship you had with him. There are no words of comfort I am sure…and the guilt is normal. I still feel so guilty about my mom – and I saw her almost daily.
I know you will be surrounded by him in everything you do, and you will feel his presence when you least expect it. You are in my thoughts sweetie, and I'm saying prayers for your Grandma too – I can't imagine how hard this is for her too.
i'm so sorry for your families loss, your post was a beautiful tribute to him and now his memory. i wish your grandma well, 56 years of marriage, that say's a lot! i love the picture, i know you shared a very special bond with will live with you forever.
So sorry for your loss. Your guilt is understandable but I'm sure he didn't think less of you because of it. I lost my grandpa years ago and he was a man to be respected and admired. I still love and miss him, so I can feel your loss. God bless you and yours.
My grandfather passed away a week ago. You know that it's going to happen one day, but it doesn't make it any easier. I'm so thankful that my daughter got to meet him and love him.
I'm sorry for your loss!