Our main department (other than dealing with the funeral home) was pictures. Linda asked me to do a tribute video and I wanted to do a table of photos from his life for the viewing and funeral. I compiled over 500 pictures. The video is over 14 minutes long and I had to do it to Beach Boys music - Dad's favorite. You can download it here for a little while or view it anytime here.
Dave and Summer were wonderful and kept the little girls while Jason, Laura, and I were at the viewing on Thursday evening. It was hard on us, let alone how it would've been for them. I was really grateful that Laura got to deal with her emotions that day as she had to sing for the funeral the next day.
The funeral was held Friday. Laura sang a beautiful rendition of Be Still My Soul with Hannah accompanying and made it through without crying. This was the one and only thing Dan ever mentioned about his funeral - that he wanted Laura to sing. I was so proud of her for doing so beautifully!
Jason spoke and gave the most wonderful talk. He collected memories (he requested 2) of his dad from all the family and wove them into a great talk. Our family's memories were as follows: Eliza: 1- I remember that Grandpa loved me. 2- He liked to watch me dance. Sara Rosie: 1- I liked that he always wanted to talk to me. 2- Grandpa read the best stories. I liked to sit by him and he would read books out loud. He had really good voices. Laura: 1- I remember going to Disneyland with Grandpa when I was little. After we rode a lot of rides, the ride I wanted to ride the most was Grandpa. I loved it when he carried me! 2- I loved how much Grandpa supported me when I performed. He was there for every recital and every play. In fact, one of his last trips out of the house was to come see me perform. That made me feel so special and loved. Melinda: 1- Dad was always willing to talk Jazz Basketball with me. One of the greatest compliments I received was when he told me that I could "Talk basketball like a man." and then clarified, "That's a compliment." I loved getting a call whenever news broke (on vacation, late at night, etc.) to hash out basketball. It was a great time watching games with him and analyzing together. 2- Dad and I are both uncomfortable in loud crowds. We would often seek out quiet rooms together at parties. It was during these conversations that I learned about his life and he asked me about mine. These chats helped me feel loved and welcomed into the family. Jason: 1- Only thing that made him my stepdad was different last names; he was always my real Dad. 2- Came to our life when we needed a Dad. 3- Taught me what is was like to be a man, Dad, and Grandpa. 4- He was willing to plant his roots with us and grow. 5- Dad was all about love. 6- He fought to give us 10 bonus years and chance to get to know all of his grandkids
All the grandkids came up and sang I Am A Child of God. My girls were so well-behaved and I was so proud of them and happy to hear their little voices.
Jason had even further roles as a pallbearer and then he performed the ordinance of dedicating the grave. He is an amazing man, that man I married.
We went back to the church and had a lovely lunch and got a few pictures together.
Thank you to all the friends and family who came out to support us (help with the kids, attendance at the funeral or viewing, calls, texts, messages, cards, flowers, etc) during this difficult time. We felt your love and it helped so much!