He Gave of Himself
Thanksgiving Day 1992.
It started out like all the past Thanksgiving Celebrations at the family home! The woman in the kitchen with her battenburg apron. Bustling around and preparing the holiday feast for her family. Turkey and Ham, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes with marshmallows, cranberry relish, cherry salad, homemade yeast rolls, pumpkin pies and more!
The holiday table was set with a beautiful Thanksgiving center piece. Candles ready to be lit. The fine china waiting to hold the holiday meal.
As the family arrived, she greeted them at the door, hugging and kissing and making them seem like the holiday feast was being prepared just for them.
The man, in his Pendleton red plaid shirt taking our coats and scarves and putting them on the master bedroom bed. Then, returning to sit up in his old leather recliner. Sitting and smiling and watching his family.
His eyes sparked that day, really sparked! After thought of the holiday, revealed that it was a different holiday gathering. No one noticed at the time, but it was going to be different!
As the walls of "Cedar Haven", that's what they called their home, began to burst with family members the noise level rose to a excited volume.
The turkey was removed from the oven and set on the kitchen counter. Everyone crowded into the kitchen to watch the carving of the bird happen. Everyone reaching in and "stealing" a little piece of meat to munch on. The man had done the carving of the turkey for years and it was a tradition. A tradition, that would be ending for him.
Dinner was served and everyone ate their fill! Laughing, joking and flowing conversations. The hunting stories, the fishing stories were all shared and laughed at.
As the women began the clean-up, the man returned to his recliner watching his clan. His 4 children often stopped by his chair to visit with him. His grandchildren played on the floor and yelled Grandpa, Grandpa...Watch Me, Watch ME, Look at ME!! His wife would gently place her hand on his shoulder for a few moments, smiling and watching her family.
He did not take his regular Thanksgiving Nap that day. There was no snoring sounds coming from him. This went unnoticed at the time. Something was happening and no one realized it, until later.
Instead of napping, he called for each of his 4 children and older grandsons, one by one, to come out to the garage with him. There he gave each of them something that belonged to him. A gun, a fishing pole, his favorite fishing vest, a old small wood-burning stove...on and on it went. A prized possession, he was giving away to ones that he loved. This was something he did not do. He often gave of himself, but did not give away his prized possessions. This was different that day, and no really thought about it, til later.
It wasn't until a few days later, on November 30th, that everyone thought about what he had done. He had given them each, a part of him! He had shared with each one, something he wanted them to have.
He died on November 30th....His wife's birthday. But, on that Thanksgiving Day in 1992....He chose to share of himself and give one of his prized possessions, to his loving family members!
Warm and Thankful Thanksgiving Memories of my Dad and Mom! I love you both and Miss YOU both, TODAY!