Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Daddy's Ashes

It's been over 2 years since Dad died. Not an hour has passed that I haven't thought of him. He was a great man. My mom was a great woman. They were fantastic parents. We were truly blessed in every way. In fact my brother and I often say we hit the parental jackpot.

Daddy was raised at Mystic Lake Power Plant. Dad, my brother and his crew often worked at the power plant facilities after dad moved to Absarokee and started his construction company. The picture above is of the power plant itself, which daddy and the crew re-roofed many years ago (that is copper roofing by the way). Dad loved doing jobs at Mystic, and he did a lot of them over the years. He loved it there more than anywhere, so that, of course, is where Mike and I decided to spread his ashes. We waited for over two years to do it...for many reasons, including the biggest one; we weren't ready to let go of him.

But finally, we were ready, and as we walked up the mountain today I remembered all the awesome times we had on the trail in years gone by. I could almost hear daddy asking if I needed a ride (when I was just a tot he would hoist me up on his backpack and I'd ride up there through the rough spots and on the switchbacks. I was utterly fearless because I knew my daddy wouldn't let anything happen to me). The memory was sad but more importantly, it was beautiful.

Mike and I at Fish Rock

Often during these trips, he told us stories about running up and down the steep trail to the lake. He and his siblings fished and hunted as often as possible during his childhood in the high mountains of Montana. He often mentioned a place he called Fish Rock, which was just up from the river on the trail where they would clean the day's catch of Rainbow Trout. He spoke with such joy of those days, and that is where we thought he should be.

Mike spreading daddy's ashes

It was hard to see daddy go, though I knew it wasn't really him. I always was daddy's girl and that hasn't changed in the 2 years he has been gone. But I know he is where he was meant to be. He loved that place with all of his heart and he shared that love with us and we will carry it with us always, just as he did. Thanks for everything, daddy. You may be gone, but you will never be forgotten.

Thanks, also, to my brother's college roommate and best friend through all these years. He and his family were there with us through this hard day. Fred was "adopted" by my family after college and my parents both loved him very much. I know daddy was happy today to have them there with us. I only wish Wolf had been there as well.


Anvilcloud said...

What a beautiful spot to choose -- with so many poignant memories associated with it.

Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

Beautiful, Laurie, just beautiful.

Anonymous said...

You did a wonderful job of expressing yourself with the words and pictures on this post. Thank you for sharing.

I'm sure you brought as much joy to his life as he brought to yours. He was lucky to have you as his daughter, as I am lucky to have you as a friend.

Laurie said...

Thanks, AC. We grew up hiking, backpacking and camping. Though we went to dozens of other spots through the years, Mystic was always our favorite.

Thanks, Lynne, it was an incredible experience.

Thomas, you are so sweet. Thank you my friend.

Ang said...

I remember your parents because my great grandparents lived next door. When my Grandpa passed we went to your house and your mom took care of us while the ambulance came. I was very young but I remember her being so nice to us and trying to help us understand. I saw you Dad at the nursing home some. He usually remembered who I was. Your right you hit the parental jackpot. You and you brother are amazing people. Im sorry for you losses. You did a beautiful job keeping their memory alive. Angela Pennington

*^_^* said...

Well done! Thanks for sharing!

Kristen said...

That was really touching. I can see he emotions in the pictures and am so happy that you took the time you find the perfect time-- at the perfect place.

True forgveness, true healing, and true freedom are all about seeing that the past isn't here anymore.

Now really is a new beginning.

He's given you! :)

Ur-spo said...

that is a lovely tribute
thank you as always, for sharing this with us.

wd said...

Laurie ~

What a lovely spot, and what lovely memories that you have and have shared!!!!! >HUGE bear hug<....b

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