Thursday, March 19, 2015

A portrait of Dad

I love this picture of my dad.  He rarely smiled for photos so I'm glad we were able to capture this one.
This next shot is also a great portrait of the dad I knew and loved.
More often than not though, this is the face he'd show when  a camera appeared on the scene.  He didn't like to show his teeth or be the center of attention.  This is a recent photo of my parents.  A handsome couple, I think, though I may be a bit prejudice.
Here's the younger version with me and my 2 sisters.  I'm the cute one....ok, I'm the one with the extremely short bangs.  My sisters are kind of cute too.  It's nice to see my dad smiling in this picture also.
Dad passed away at 3:00 this morning.  It happened way too fast.  When I saw him at Christmastime he seemed just fine, then 3 months later my family was crying at his hospital bedside.  I imagine that's how it is with most deaths - there's not enough time to comprehend the loss before having to say goodbye.  Dad's heart and kidney had had more than they could take and he needed to rest.

While we shed many tears in that sterile, disturbing and uncomfortable environment, I have to admit our 24 hours spent together in the hospital as a family (parents, children, grandchildren and friends), was an experience I wouldn't trade for anything.

We may have done a lot of crying but I'd like to think we shared stories and laughed even more.  Dad rallied for a while about 12 hours before his final rest.  He became chatty (for Dad) and that comforted us, knowing he wasn't in pain.  I hope he enjoyed the bantering, chiding and silliness going on around him as much as we loved reminiscing and being in each others' presence - in other words,  celebrating family.

His passing was very fitting for a quiet man of few words.  His breaths became more and more shallow, his face peaceful and he left this world just as quietly as he moved about in it.   Quiet, modest and a loved man.


  1. I'm so sorry.
    Life is way too short.

  2. Mary Pannabecker SteinerMarch 20, 2015 at 5:13 AM

    A lovely portrait, Karen. I love you.

  3. Karen, wonderful tribute for your Dad and your family. Memories are forever. Hugs and prayers to all. Love you.

  4. I remember when your parents were married at the Quaker meeting house. They were a beautiful couple. I also remember you girls as you looked in the picture. Such a nice family. This was a wonderful tribute to your dad . He might have been quiet but compared to his brothers , he was out going. See you next week

  5. Karen, I can't put into words how sorry all of us were to hear that your dad had passed. He truly was a gentleman and a gentle man. I always looked forward to talking with he and your mom at the Fourth of July reunions and they both make you feel that they genuinely feel the same way. Whether we were catching up on the family news or complaining about the Phollies, it was always a pleasure. He loved relaying stories about the three of you girls and your families; he was so very proud of you all. He may have been a quiet man relative to many, but compared to our dad, he was downright chatty. We love him and we'll miss him. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  6. Karen, I am glad you all got to be with your dad to give him a good send off. I hold you in my heart and prayers. All we can do is live our lives (short, like some farm animals or long like you grandfather and dad) with as much love and laughter as we can fit in. Do animals laugh?

  7. What a beautiful tribute. Love, love, love the pictures...I'm so sorry for your loss, he was always such a kind man to me, always reminded me of my stepfather.Nice, quiet, friendly, What a blessing that you all got to be together in the end. Hang in there Monday. It will not be easy. Love to you all, you are all each day in my thoughts and prayers.