Celebrating the Life of My Grandpa

Tomorrow I’ll be blogging about the Miami Half Marathon that’s coming up this Sunday (!!!!!) but today I want to take a minute to reflect and honor my grandfather who you know passed away on Sunday.

My grandpa with my aunt and my mom on his 91st birthday. My mom is the one with short hair, my aunt in the red lipstick.

My grandpa with my aunt and my mom on his 91st birthday. My mom is the one with short hair, my aunt in the red lipstick.

Yesterday my family gathered for my grandpa’s funeral and burial. He would have been 92 years old this August. He lived a long, healthy and happy life with my grandmother, who passed away four years ago also in January.

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When my grandmother passed away it was the first time I had really attended a funeral and everyone was very sad because she struggled at the end and of course she was leaving my grandfather behind.

My grandpa was very strong during the whole funeral process for my grandma and he was there for my mom and aunt who were very emotional. However, I’ll never forget when we were leaving her viewing, the last time he would see her before the casket was closed, he leaned down to kiss her and said, “you promised you would never leave me.”

I honestly could not imagine anything more sad. They were married for over 62 years. I’ve only been with Adam for 10 years and cannot imagine my life my life without him. To lose your best friend, the person you’ve shared your life with and built your family with, after 62 years would be the hardest thing.

Towards the end of my grandpa’s life he kept saying he was ready to go, that he just wanted to see my grandma again. He had the onset of dementia and would often ask where she was, and when she was coming home.

I know their reunion on Sunday must have been a very happy one.

When my step-father died almost two years ago now, he went very unexpectedly and at much too young of an age. His funeral was the second one that I can remember and it was a very sad one as well.

Yesterday, my grandpa’s funeral was so different than my grandma’s and my step-fathers. His funeral was truly a celebration of his life. While there were plenty of tears shed, I would say the general mood was positive. We were all gathered there to honor and celebrate him.

I love that my grandpa wasn’t afraid at the end. I’m not surprised, since I cannot remember him being afraid of anything.

f9042977645145b318dfcfbe682f8895He was a proud Navy man who served in two wars. And now he’s back with his bride for good.




  1. January 22, 2015 / 2:08 pm

    This post was so touching, Kristina. I’m so sorry for your loss.

  2. January 22, 2015 / 3:16 pm

    I am so sorry for your loss. I will keep you and your family in my thoughts.

  3. January 22, 2015 / 4:01 pm

    I know it’s hard to lose family but you wrote a beautiful post!! So happy that your grandparents are reunited. As sad as I was a year and a half ago to lose my Poppa (he was almost 99), I know he was ready to see my Mema (and his first wife).
    I’m glad that y’all celebrated his life!!! I hope you have lots of good memories!!

    • January 22, 2015 / 10:09 pm

      How incredible that your Poppa lived to be almost 99 years old! He must have taken such good care of his body and overall health through the years. That’s really an inspiration!

  4. January 22, 2015 / 4:10 pm

    I’m literally crying at work reading this. Your grandpa seems like such a wonderful man and he obviously loved your grandma very much. So happy that they are together FOREVER now! 🙂

  5. January 22, 2015 / 5:00 pm

    I am so so sorry about your Grandpa. Your post is a great honor to him, you did a beautiful job explaining how wonderful he was.

  6. January 22, 2015 / 5:02 pm

    Beautiful post Kristina. Sounds like you had an amazing grandfather.

  7. January 22, 2015 / 5:26 pm

    Celebrating someone’s life is an awesome way to remember them, I’m sure he’s smiling now. Such a sweet post, Kristina.

  8. January 22, 2015 / 5:31 pm

    This is such a touching tribute to your grandfather, especially his strong relationship with your grandmother. I’m so sorry you had to go through the tragedy of losing him, but I think reflecting on it like this can really help. It sounds like towards the end, he knew he would be reunited with your grandmother.

  9. January 22, 2015 / 6:34 pm

    That was a touching post, Kristina, I was tearing up reading it. Your grandfather sounds like an amazing man. Your grandparents are together again, that is something to celebrate. Sending you hugs…

  10. January 22, 2015 / 7:19 pm

    He sounds like he was a wonderful man and you were so lucky to have him in your life.

  11. January 22, 2015 / 7:49 pm

    I’m sorry for your loss Kristina:( you brought me to tears. I can’t imagine the pain of losing your life partner, but I’m happy that he’s with your grandma again. I bet they are so happy to be reunited. Hugs <3

  12. January 22, 2015 / 7:53 pm

    Awe, that brought tears to my eyes when he told her she promised never to leave him. How incredibly sad, but so great they were together for so long. I hope your mom is holding up OK, she’s been through a lot these past few years. Hugs!

    • January 22, 2015 / 10:10 pm

      Thanks Amy, she really is doing okay. Losing both parents and her husband in four years is a bit much, but she is such a strong woman. I really am hoping that she’ll move down here to Fort Laud. soon.

  13. January 23, 2015 / 7:37 am

    I took a day to read this. I am a very emotionally tied person, both my grandfathers passed when I was 3. I hear stories and can slightly remember 1 one of them but the other I don’t remember at all. I can’t imagine what it is like to lose them….literally. Sounds like a very honorable and respectable man. My condolences to you.

  14. January 23, 2015 / 11:53 am

    What a meaningful tribute, Kristina. I also can’t imagine losing Paul, let alone losing him 60 years from now!

  15. Lisa
    January 24, 2015 / 9:42 am

    What a legacy your grandfather left to you with love, family and faith. Thank you for sharing your heart.