Saturday, April 13, 2013

Celebration of Granddad's Life

A couple weeks ago, I shared some pictures of my Granddad's last day.  I had been a little hesitant when I took the pictures because I didn't want to be obnoxious or intrusive with the camera.  I put them on my blog to make sure any extended family could see them, and hoping those closest to Granddad wouldn't be bothered by them.  I really had no idea at the time how important those pictures would be to so many people who loved Granddad...

...So it's taken me longer than I would have liked, but I thought I'd share some pictures from Granddad's memorial service for those family members who were not able to attend.  If you're one of my regular blog readers then I hope you enjoy getting to know my roots a little more.  Granddad's obituary can be found here.  If you knew Granddad personally and would like a CD with all of the pictures from his service and his last day please send me an email at pollycarlson (at) gmail (dot) com with your address and I will send you one.  There are many more pictures that I didn't include in this blog post.

My extended family has always lived spread out across the country, so we got to see a lot of family we hadn't seen in years.  There were lots of pictures taken...

It was really touching to see just how many people came out to celebrate my Granddad's life.  My grandparents moved to the small town of Colville 10 or 15 years ago to retire.  The fell in love with the community and it was clear that the community had fallen in love with them.  The community hall was packed with friends and neighbors.
It was truly touching to hear the stores their friends and neighbors told about my grandparents.  How one neighbor had come home from the hospital after having her first baby and found that my Granddad had built them a front porch...
About how my grandparents had helped them find the perfect-fit home during the time they were realtors...
about how my Granddad had taught helped them build various things or taught them different skills...
...or served with him as a volunteer firefighter. 
Of course there were many family stories shared too...some of them I had heard before and some of them I hadn't...

My Granddad was drafted into the army during the Korean War and my uncle and most of cousins have joined different branches of military service, so Granddad had representatives from the Army, Air Force, and Coast Guard there.
It was so touching to see my cousins fold and present my Nana with the American flag.

My uncle who is a minister led the service and did an amazing job (and I have to say looking through all these pictures, he looked a lot like my Granddad.)
He played his guitar to accompany the hymns.

My mom recited Crossing the Bar by Tennyson because my Granddad loved sailing.

My cousin sang a worship song that he had written himself.

 My kids were some of the only small children there...and I have to say were pretty well behaved for most of it.
When Seth found it particularly difficult to sit still after a while, we let him explore around outside.
Anson in particular had fun with the tissue packets and getting better acquainted with some aunts and uncles.
 Nana was just an amazing, classy lady, the whole day.  She and Granddad had been married over 60 years, and had been nearly constant companions ever since they retired to Colville.

 The community hall where the service was held bore many markings of my Granddad.  He and Nana had been members of the hall community club nearly their entire time living on Colville.  One friend pointed out the perfectly straight tile in the kitchen as having been put in under my Granddad's painstaking direction.  The chair caddies we put the chairs away on as we were cleaning up had been built by Granddad and he had also been helpful in getting the hall a new roof.  This was also where they held their 50th wedding anniversary party.
My sister made a beautiful hand-bound remembrance book for people to sign.
The ladies from the club who put the lunch together really outdid was plentiful and delicious.
 And afterward people visited for a long time...


  1. This was lovely....thank you, Polly!

  2. So beautiful. It's a wonderful tribute to an obviously much loved man.

  3. It looks like it must have been a wonderful tribute and memorial, and that he and your grandmother were well loved.

  4. Great pictures. It looks like it was a great celebration of your grandfather's life.

  5. What a beatiful tribute to your grandpa! Isn't it wonderful to celebrate family and to have a knowledge of our Heavenly Father's eternal plan?

  6. Polly I am so glad you could attend. Thank you for letting me feel apart of the experience. I wish I could have come. What a beautiful service! Your kids are getting so big. I was about 7 or 8 when my great grandpa died and I remember the funeral. I hope the stories from the service last forever and someone recorded them. It would make a great bedtime story book. We send our love to you and your family! xo

  7. Polly, thanks for being there and sharing these photos so we could be apart of the experience to. We love grandad and wish we could have come to support. I would have loved to have heard all the stories about him. Maybe someone could write them all down and it could be a new bedtime story book to read to the kiddos. We love you too and your family! I remember going to the funeral for my great grandpa B (LaVerne's dad) when I was Katie's age. These experiences are remembered. Thanks for your tribute. We send all our love!!

  8. I truly think you did a beautiful job capturing this moment...and you'll thank yourself years down the road for having done it.


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