In my We are all butterflies post last week, I talked about the beauty to be found around us all the time, even in decline and death. The friends in that post are my dear slightly older urban sister, Cat, and her beloved’s father, my urban grandpa, Ernie.
Ernie passed over to the other side on Saturday night. He went peacefully, knowing that his son is marrying a wonderful woman, his grandchildren are happy and healthy, and his great-granddaughter is in good hands.
I only got to visit with Ernie a handful of times, but we always hit it off. He had great stories to tell about his time in World War II, being scared to death, but also feeling proud. He had a great career as an engineer working at the refinery in Benecia. He told us about the high Sierra hiking treks he’d take his family on each summer, when they were younger. He was an expert in model trains and ran the local model train enthusiasts until his health declined. And, until his latest round of medicines ruined his taste buds, he could enjoy a glass of wine or two.
I will be eternally thankful that I got to spend even what little time with him that I did. I never knew my own grandfathers, and it was really nice to feel like I got a little bit of that experience.
And I’m thankful that he had such a loving environment for his final months.
Ernie, this one is for you: