My father departed his earthly life early this morning, peacefully in his sleep.
He was ready to go, had settled all his “accounts” in all areas of life, and was just waiting for his time to depart. He had curtailed his medications at the beginning of the week, not wanting to prolong his suffering any longer.
He was 89 years old, and three days ago made his final “to-do list” including what he wanted for his memorial and obituary so that Mom would have it to work with. He was a man who lived by his to-do list every day, finding purpose in his later years by accomplishing things methodically. It was a good day if all the entries were checked off at the end of the day.
He spent all his working years in sales, first in the food industry where he became a sales and distribution executive, and later in real estate where he became a broker and served hundreds of home buyers and sellers over many years. He was known for his integrity and his easy way of helping his clients find the best home for a fair price. He was well known throughout the region in those years and served his colleagues as well as his clients well.
I remember well times of going fishing when I was a young boy, sitting in a row boat in the early morning stillness of a country lake, awaiting the strike of a rainbow trout. Maybe not much talking, but together just the same. He tended to teach more by the way he lived than by verbal instruction. There were times of giving advice as well, perhaps not so well received then by his only son, who thought he knew better, but who learned as the years went on to listen better.
He and my mother recently celebrated their 69th wedding anniversary. Like any couple, they had their ups and downs over the years, but stuck it out through the hard times and were together in the twilight years. I can see my mother lovingly soothing him with a soft touch and soft voice in his last days as he was restless before the pain medications began to work more effectively, and then even when they were.
I’ll miss him in the coming days, and yet am glad his suffering is done. He ran his race well, and will be remembered fondly by many, including me. Fare well, Dad, on your new adventure.