I just received a phone call that my grandpa died peacefully in his sleep this evening. My parents have been taking care of him in their home for the last few months and Dad was with him when he died. I am so grateful that my parents were able to do this for him and I love them so much for it.
We have known for several weeks that Grandpa didn't have a lot of time left on this earth. With Jeremy's encouragement, I went by myself to spend the weekend with him a few weeks ago. I am so grateful for this special time with my grandpa. We were able to have some good conversations that I will always treasure. My dad gave him "rub downs" with lotion several times a day, and when I was there he let me take over. It was a sweet experience. The following weekend we brought the whole family down so that the kids could be with him. He was always so good and so loving with my kids and they love "Grandpa Great" very, very much.
Grandpa is an important part of my life. I say "is" instead of "was" because he always will be. I know he lives on and will be with me in spirit for the rest of my life. I am so grateful to know he is with my grandma-- possibly the sweetest woman to grace this earth. We have missed her so much and I know that they are having an exquisitely beautiful reunion in heaven. I can just hear her voice saying, "Oh, Philip!"
I am so grateful for each and every memory I have of this good man. I am so grateful to have spent my life in close proximity to him. His house was always a bike ride away and we lived on his farm. This gave me countless opportunities to be around him and grow in my love for him. He was thoughtful, strong. fun, a very hard worker, tender, a tease, a tremendous athlete, and the biggest BYU fan out there. He was full of wisdom. He served our country in WWII and I have always loved hearing his stories of the war and felt a deep appreciation for what he did.
I love you, Grandpa. You will be so missed.