Tuesday, June 2, 2009

A Fitting Tribute

Dad's service was just beautiful. The speakers were wonderful. Scott did a great job giving the life sketch and Tom told wonderful stories about his father. Kelly paid a wonderful tribute to her grandfather. Les was the concluding speaker and he spoke about Bishop Jackson. It was very moving. The music was beautiful. Sonia Butterfield sang an unaccompanied solo of "Oh my Father" It gave me chills. The Dodgen sisters sang a trio that was so pretty. I think dad would have approved of the service. We laughed a lot at the funny stories....and also cried a lot. The grandchildren sang the closing song "I am a child of God" By the final verse most of them had tears streaming down their face. Oh how they loved their dear grandpa Jackson.

Grandpa was known as the tootsie roll grandpa. He gave those candies out to every little kid in the ward, the store, or anywhere he came into contact with him. We had bowls of tootsie rolls at the guest book and Scott tucked one in dad's hand.

The military service at the cemetery was very moving. As taps began to play everything became so quiet. It was almost a sacred feeling as those soldiers folded the American flag with taps playing in the background. I had no idea they were presenting the flag to Scott. What an honor for him. As they presented the flag the sailor looked right into Scott's eyes and said "On behalf of the President of the United States I would like to thank you for your fathers service to this country." I don't remember the rest....I was crying to much at this point. It was just so moving....and so well deserved by a man who loved his country and was willing to die to protect it. Thank you dad for your service during the WWII.

Thought I would include some pictures from the cemetery that I took yesterday.

This was the beautiful hearse that carried dad to the cemetery.

The pallbearers were some of Lloyds grandsons. Kevin and Chris are on the end.

Sailor in the United States Navy Honor gaurd.

Preparing to fold the flag.

Scott with all of his brothers and sisters.

Scott having a last and quiet moment with his father.

We are all so happy that dad's suffering has ended....but we will miss him terribly. What a presence he has been in our lives. What a blessing for my children to have grown up right next door to this remarkable man they call grandpa. Since dad was in the nursing home Chris was assigned to take the sacrament to his grandpa every sunday. It was such a great opportunity for Chris. Well, this Sunday.....Chris's last Sunday as a priest.....he knelt for the final time to bless the sacrament in our ward....as he began the prayer his voice cracked and I knew he was having a struggle. He continued the prayer very slowly. When he arose from the table he had tears coming down his face. Other is the congregation were also crying. The spirit in that meeting was so strong. Chris was also the concluding speaker at sacrament on Sunday. At the end of his talk he paused and said "I think it is a good idea to pay tribute to my grandfather. I used to always be jealous when I was growing up that so many people called him grandpa. He was my grandpa and I didn't want to share him. Now that I've grown I am thankful to have a grandpa that so many others wanted to have him for a grandpa." We will miss you Dad. You will be in our hearts forever.


ShEiLa said...

What an honorable re-cap of the services.

You all put together such a fine life celebration and tribute to a fine man.


Leslie said...

Wish I could have been there...so hard not to be able to make it. It sounds like it was amazing. Love the part about Uncle Scott tucking in a tootsie roll!

Neighbor Jane Payne said...

I loved your tributes, Chandra. What an incredible opportunity for you all to love and be loved like that.