Thursday, July 05, 2007

Hark the Harold Angels Are Singing in Heaven

In Loving Memory

This post is dedicated to the memory of my dear, dear grandfather, Harold. He died early Wednesday morning (July 4th). When I was a little girl at Christmas time when we would sing "Hark the Harold" I would always think how special it was that my grandpa had his name in the song. I think I remember my mom saying she thought something similar when she was a little girl too. My grandpa was a big man with huge hands and a heart to match. When me and my sisters were young we would go stay up at my grandpa and grandma's in Sandstone MN for a week in the summer. My grandpa worked for many years at the prison there and also in his younger years owned a gas station. He was always tinkering around with things and also came from an era where you just didn't throw things away. So going to stay at my grandparents house was like staying in an antique/junk/rummage store. We would find all kinds of things. Old records me and my sisters would play on the old record player. Old clothes and shoes and magazines and lots of just junk, but treasure to a kid.

Grandpa also grew up in the depression so when things came in economy size or were at a great price he loaded up. There was cans and boxes and freezers full of food in their house. Grandpa liked to eat, but he did have some quirky eating habits too. He would sometimes take a bag of saltines and crush them up, poor milk on them and that was his snack. I remember sitting there as a little girl laughing while he ate, and then later trying it for myself.

Grandpa loved his grandkids and had a special nick-name for each of us. And he loved his great-grandkids too. He had the kids called him "gg-pa" and it stuck.

Sister was the first of the great-grandkids. When I was pregnant with Sister I was sitting one night with my mom going over names. We wrote one down and it sounded really nice, but you know how it is when you are naming a just aren't sure and the name doesn't seem to fit anything yet. Well my mom mentioned it to grandpa. Turns out that Sister's name is also the same as one of my grandpa's favorite aunts and he liked the name so much every time we talked he would ask me how little "Sister" was doing, etc. Always referred to her as this name and I guess that was it. My grandpa kind of made it feel right and it fit her perfect the minute she greeted us.

He always had a dollar in his pocket to give the grandkids and the last couple of years when the grandkids were getting bigger, he started to buy them 2 liters of pop. The kids loved it, and I suppose it's something they might remember about him too thinking about their great-grandpa. I had the most accommodating car for grandpa and often was the one to go pick him up for things and drop him off. Sister always liked to run up to gg-pa's to get her 2 liter of pop he had stashed for the gg-kids. He died with two 2 liters left in his closet.

I could write a lot more about him. I have many fond memories of him and the last 24 hours have been spent thinking a lot about him. I'll laugh at something and then cry and then laugh while I cry. But I'm glad he is in a better place. I'm glad his aches and pains are over and he is at peace. I hope I am blessed to live as long a life as him and be able to see my great grandchildren. I'll miss you grandpa. See you in heaven someday...


Anonymous said...

Thank you for writing this. It was helpful for me to read about the memories you captured about Grandpa. I will always cherish those times we spent as kids staying at their house. I will never forget Grandpa's chair, and how it was the best seat to watch t.v. We "called" that chair every time he got out. I will miss him!

Sra Banegas said...

Oh Honduras Sprouts, my heart goes out to you. I am so sorry. Death is an awful thing. I lost my grandma in 2003 (from leukemia) and then my grandpa in 2004 ( from lung cancer). It was just terrible!

But like you said, he is in a better place and not in pain anymore. That is the way I think of it with my grandparents. Their lives didn't end, they just began.

Memories are a beautiful thing too! Cherish them! I do the same thing you do too, I laugh, cry, and laugh AND cry at the same time when I think of all the memories! :)

Take care and email me if you need someone to talk to,


Tom said...

Sprout,so sorry about your grandpa.

Anonymous said...

Sprout, sorry about your loss. Thank you for sharing about your beloved grandpa.

Cindy in California
(originally from Minneapolis and hopefully Honduras someday)

CORY said...

Mama Sprout - I'm sorry to hear of your loss!!! Giving you a great big Cyber Hug!!!

Love you - Shan Ho Ho

Honduras Sprout said...

My grandpa was one of a kind!
Thanks everyone for the kind words.

Grandpa Sprout said...

You captured the essence of grandpa and your tribute is beautiful. When I first went into his apartment after he died I also cried, then laughed and then laughed and cried at some of his unique and quirky ways of doing things. He was special and one thing that made him so special was how much he loved his family and would do anything he could for them. There was only one Corky and only one grandpa quite like him.

La Gringa said...

Such a nice tribute to your grandpa. It brought a few tears to my eyes, too. I remember those simple little things about my grandparents and how special everything was with them.