My Grandpa and Grandma on their wedding day
Grandpa with Alan and me on our wedding day
My grandpa passed away last night after a long and courageous struggle with Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's. He was a lovely, fun-loving man and I know I am lucky to have had him in my life for so long, but my heart breaks when I think I will never see him again. I have cried a lot of tears today, and spent a lot of time remembering.
I will always cherish my childhood memories of the cousins piling into Grandpa's car each Halloween, and heading for the pumpkin patch to choose our perfect jack o'lanterns. I'll remember him taking us for milkshakes at McDonalds, and eating blackberry pie together in the church hall each September. I will never forget the strains of Hockey Night in Canada coming from the living room when we slept over at Grandma and Grandpa's house, and how much I loved to sit in his reclining chair. I'll think back to days spent at the racetrack watching his horses and listening to Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Old Oak Tree while eating french fries with ketchup in a paper tray. Oh! And the Masons' Picnic with the ice cream cups and sack races and tug of war! And going for a peanut buster parfait at Dairy Queen with him and Grandma every year on the last day of school. I'll remember the smell of the garage full of his things, and I will think of him every time I hear The Little Drummer Boy at Christmastime- it was his favourite. I'll be grateful for all the dinners we shared together before my evening classes at university the year my Grandma died, for dancing with him at my wedding, and the way he always smiled when he watched my boys playing. I will see him blowing out the candles on his cake with Dylan, with whom he almost shared a birthday.
When he first went into the hospital in the summer of 2010, I went to visit him and he said to me, "Does your Grandma know you're here? You make sure you go say hello to her before you leave." I believe he's in heaven, saying hello to her right now. After 16 years, they're together again. Maybe they've even got side-by-side easy chairs like they used to. I hope so.
Good-bye, sweet Grandpa. I love you. Give Grandma a big hug for me.
love always, your "little Lucy"