What’s YOUR favorite memory of your father or grandfather?
One of my favorite memories of my Grandpa Bruce is one I’d like to share. Now, Grandpa Bruce was pretty stubborn (yes, I come by it honestly – lol). He liked ONE kind of bread, ONE kind of peanut butter, ONE kind of sausage, etc. ~ You get the picture. Well, NOBODY even THOUGHT about buying any other brand than his favorite when it came to bread. However, my grandmother ordered her groceries from the local grocer, and they didn’t have Grandpa’s favorite kind (Mrs. Baird’s), so she just told the grocer to bring what he had…and he did. Well, Grandpa Bruce was NOT a happy camper. He stood over the sink and put 1 slice of bread at a time down the garbage disposal! He was smiling the whole time he was doing it, and I was too. His smile was infectious ~ there was NO way anybody could see that smile and not love him.
I do miss him, but I am so grateful that my daughter has some really special memories of him. My favorite memories of him with my daughter occurred at my parents’ home. I remember him making her a bunch of blocks out of extra pieces of wood. He painted them all blue. He would sit in the floor of the kitchen and build castles and houses with her. I also remember him playing with her on the swingset in their backyard. I have a very vivid picture of him in my mind of him going down the slide with her and swinging on the swings. She loved him so very much.
The Knowledge Box Central team would love to share their favorite memories with you. Please read their stories, and comment with your own stories of your fathers and grandfathers.
Pam Sutton, Operations Manager for Knowledge Box Central:
Some of my most treasured childhood memories were of spending time with my Daddy on the farm. Weather it was chasing cows and fixing the fences they tore down or feeding the horses, pigs or goats; there was always something to do. We worked hard on the farm, but we played hard too. Anytime there was a break in the work we could often be found camping or fishing down along the riverbank. A tradition we still carry on today with our own children.
As was common for the era he grew up in, my Daddy wasn’t a well educated man, but he was a hard worker and always provided for our family. Ultimately his health failed and his last days were filled with Dr appointments and dialysis treatments. It was during this time while taking him to a Doctors appointment that one of our most memorable conversations took place. Our son was in Kindergarten and really struggling in the public school environment. My husband and I were starting to consider homeschooling but I was really questioning my ability to teach our children. My Daddy wasn’t a man of many words, but I’ll never forget that day because he just talked and talked all the way to town encouraging me to give homeschooling a try. He told me “you can do this, you CAN teach him.” “You take the time and work with him and he will be just fine, I know he will.” “I wish someone would have spent more time trying to teach me when I was young”.
Daddy’s been gone almost six years now and when the going gets tough in this homeschooling journey, I think back to that day and his excitement and encouragement and know that he would be proud of how his grand kids have turned out.
Candie Donner, Marketing Manager for Knowledge Box Central:
My grandfather, the man I believed could do anything, was the wisest man I knew! Even as an adult I still believed he had all of the answers! When problems arose, be they mine or someone else, my first thought was always to turn to him. He taught me about honesty and integrity and the importance of financial stability. He led in all things by example and I will never forget that about him! His wit and timing were impeccable, he rarely missed the opportunity to tell a joke or deliver a one liner. My dad and his younger brother, my uncle Tom got a lot of that, but Papa left big shoes to fill.
Summers spent with him at the lake are some of my fondest memories. He would spend all day cooking “El Reno” hamburgers, a family favorite, while we all went out in the boat and played in the water. We would come home hungry and tired and there he would be, waiting for us to return with his secret coney slaw and burgers by the dozen! This last year my dad and I tried to recreate those famous burgers, and while they were good, there was just something missing… Papa was missing.
His love for his grand kids could never be questioned! Even though half of us were actually HIS grand kids and the other half were step, you never knew the difference. He loved us all the same and we knew it. Of course I liked to SAY I was the favorite granddaughter, but deep down I knew he really didn’t have any favorites. He loved us all the same but treated us all as individuals, right down to our own special nicknames that described us each perfectly! My grandfather was a man of so many wonderful traits that this short letter could never do him justice, but I hope I have been able to give you a small glimpse of the selfless man I called Papa!
Kim Smith, Financial Manager for Knowledge Box Central:
My grandfather, who we called Pa Pa, was such a hard working man who provided for six children by working in the coal mines. He and my grandmother also planted a massive garden every year that brought forth the bounty that was ‘put up’, or canned, to eat through the winter. My earliest memories of him are of always working, but laughing and joking with us kids as he worked, or of him coming in to eat the mean that he ate almost every day, Pinto Beans, Cornbread, and Bacon. He didn’t eat it every day because that’s all they had, he ate it every day because it’s what he loved. I don’t remember how old I was when Pa Pa got sick, but as I grew older, he got sicker and sicker. Working in the coal mine had taken it’s toll and Black Lung settled in his lungs to stay. I have such vivid, memories of him sitting in the yard on his little fold up stool, to be outside with his grandchildren. He loved watching us play and he loved to give us candy, and as he would hand it to us he would do something silly to make us laugh. sick as he was and as hard as it was for him to even breathe, he wanted to be near us and to hear us laugh. I know he loved us all so much and that he wished he could be out there chasing us around, playing in the yard. But he was with us in the only way he could, still very much a part of our activity, and our lives. The last precious memory I have of him may not seem so precious to some, but it was when he was in the hospital a couple of days before his lungs could no longer sustain his life. My Grandma had always bestowed a little more responsibilty onto us than would normally be expected of kids our age, because she had that kind of faith in us. She allowed me to come to the hospital to stay and help her with Pa Pa. The time I spent helping her to take care of him is the most precious thing to me. I was so young, and the hospital stuff scared me to death, but I was so happy to be where I was. Pa Pa passed away just a few days after that, and as I stood in snow almost to my knees as we sadly said “See you soon”, I found comfort in knowing that he was no longer fighting for every breath, and that we would see him again some day. I have a feeling that he will be there to welcome each grandchild to Heaven with a prank or tickle to make us squeal with laughter! That’s just who he was.