My father passed away yesterday. He was 89 years old.
This was the end of a long journey of illness which began with a diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease almost 20 years ago; congestive heart failure and finally dementia also took their toll. Of course, these are all diseases of attrition, so it truly was a long, slow goodbye. But he maintained a positive, optimistic spirit pretty much through it all, and was truly loved by the nurses and CNAs who cared for “Mr. John” at the nursing home where he resided the last few years.
I’ll post a more proper obituary once my brother and I get it written. For today, I thought I’d celebrate his life by posting a few pictures (Update, 1/17/13: you can read the obituary and my reminiscences about Dad by clicking here).
He’s being cremated today so we are going to plan the funeral for a time when his brother (my uncle from Michigan) and the other out-of-town family members can plan for a trip to Hampton, VA, where the service will be held. His ashes will be interred alongside my mother’s at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Hampton.
Bon Voyage, Dad. Give Mom a kiss for me (incidentally, newcomers to this blog might enjoy reading about A Kiss from Mom and a Lesson About Suffering, concerning a dream I had concerning my Mom and Dad several years ago: after Mom had died, but Dad was beginning his long final journey of lingering in a body ravaged by Parkinson’s and dementia).