Yesterday morning I stopped by Dad's house on the way to work to let him know I had made him a doctor appt for that afternoon. He had been sick with the flu last week and even sicker over the weekend, but refused to go to the hospital. Men can be so stubborn. He didn't answer the phone or the door so I let myself in only to find that he had passed away in his recliner in the living room. His oxygen wasn't on, the TV was blaring, he was apparently going to have a snack soon with two pretzel sticks on the chair next to him. There were many missed calls and texts on his phone from about 8 p.m. Sunday night and on. We had just spoken on the phone at 7:49 p.m. and he had a coughing fit at the end of our conversation and I'm afraid it happened right after we hung up.
I'm a home hospice nurse so death is not new to me, but it being my Daddy and my best friend, it destroyed me. I'm trying to see through tears to type this. Not trying to make this a sob story but Daddy was loved by so many and everyone has been asking what happened.
My emotions are everywhere and I'm not sure how I feel.
I'm mad at him for not going to the hospital when my sister and I tried so hard to convince him over the weekend, I'm sad that I can't just pick up the phone and call him because his phone is now lying here in my lap, I'm sad my children may not remember him as they grow older..but I'm also relieved that's he's in Heaven, a place greater than any of us yet know, he's with his mother and father who he missed dearly, he has a new body with new knees that let him walk pain free, and I'm sure he's still keeping up with receipts.
He had done many things in his life from being married to my sweet Mama for 18 years, to getting his bachelors degree from ASU, having us girls, working at banks, selling insurance, working at Quad, being the best Papaw to my three babies, getting another bachelors degree from ASU, currently managing Liberty Tax and working on his M.Acc. He was a father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend. He was loved and respected by so many. He was the go to guy for advice. If you knew him personally you know this is true. He's going to be missed so much. His wishes at the end of his life were to be cremated, have a party (memorial), and then to be buried next to his mother in the Paragould cemetery. Unfortunately when Quad shut down a few years ago his life insurance went with it. His current income went to keeping the business up and running and to school. He had nothing in savings. Hannah (my sister) and I are trying to pull together whatever we can to follow through with his final wishes. Cremation and a 2 hour visitation/memorial is going to be several thousand alone. If we can come up with any more than that it will go towards burying him and buying him a headstone. It hurts my pride and heart to ask anyone for donations, but the thought of not laying him to rest as he wished hurts me even more. Any amount contributed will help and be so appreciated. If you can't donate, please share this and please leave a memory of him if you have one. His many, many friends have been wonderful at telling me how he brought smiles to all their faces and it has done my heart good. I know Hannah appreciates it as well. We're making his arrangements with Emerson in Jonesboro and hope to have a memorial date set soon. Thank y'all for the prayers and love!