I was only privileged to be in his presence a handful of times. So I thought it was fitting to have somebody who knew him well write today's post.
I think most little girls love their grandparents. I was no different. Some of my earliest memories with them are spending the night at their home at South Lake Tahoe. Grandpa's house had that sweet grandparently smell and when I close my eyes I can still sometimes bring those smells to my recollection. I know that I must have been a pretty cool or very bratty little kid because when I spent the night at their home I was allowed to sleep between them in their bed.
My grandpa was a large man, not just physically. Even his towering 6' frame seemed too small to contain his large heart and spirit. He was a man of substance, of character. I remember overhearing him talk to my brother and brother-in-law once about what he thought of goatees. He didn't mince words. He told it like he thought it.
As a little girl, I associated how much someone loved me with how tightly they squeezed when hugging me. I can assure you, I was certain that my grandpa loved me more than anyone else. Sometimes I wished he had loved me just a little less.
My sweet Grandpa passed away this week. I know him better now than I did most of my life. Funny how all our lives our grandparents are just our grandparents and that is all they are in our worlds. This week I learned my Grandpa was a man. A man with hopes, dreams, achievements, disappointments and plans. He was a son, a brother, a father. He was a husband, a friend, a business man. He was the son of two Swedish immigrants. All that said, the most important person he was to me was Grandpa. I feel blessed and grateful to have known him and to be a part of his family.