We opened the door this morning to the news that my father has died. Today has been a blur of handling notifications and thinking about what next needs to be done. As one of the people I called today said, “No! Gunny is forever!” It did feel like that, as his was a formidable presence and will. He’d been planning to live past 100, though he “only” made 96. Even that, he did his own way, refusing treatment after his congestive heart failure left his dignity compromised. Even more, he restricted the news about his health in the final weeks, not wanting anyone to see him in a compromised state. He died peacefully, without pain and surrounded by caring. You cannot ask much more than that, after a full and eventful life.
For the rest of us, there’s remembering and reconciling to do. According to his wishes, we’ll have a memorial service in the spring. In his words, he wanted it to be “when the crocuses are pushing up.”