Tuesday, April 7, 2015

The Last Good Bye

Sunday was challenging, a friend had tried to reach me by phone.  When my phone got charged and turned on I read her message and returned the call.  A great friend of her's and her husband was gone.  We talked for quite a long time.

Sadly I headed for bed.  Dan usually reads the paper in bed.  As I came to bed he said, Pat died.   A second blow.  He had fought hard for a long time this man with gentle humor and a love of teasing.  Many of his accomplishments I knew some I wish I had known.  He was a complex man.  A man of vision.  A man who loved his family and his people.

Monday there was no school.  I stopped by the college to talk with John about my workshop Tuesday evening.  He had already done my printing.  I was antsy and subdued.  I still needed to get going.  The trip always takes me about an hour to make Pryor,

I had lots of time to think as first the weather was windy, then rainy, then snowing.  I arrived at the high school parked.  I was only a few minutes early I found a seat.  The color guard came in.

Most people have one major career.  Pat had three.  Tribal government - Tribal Chairman.  High School teacher of history and language. Retiring from that occupation he served as a pastor since 1978 to his death.

As we paid our last respects people filed past the open casket.  There on his chest was his bible. Placed on a corner of the open lid hung his war bonnet.  We had come to say goodbye to this good man.


  1. Thank you for a glimpse into this great man's life. We are remembered by the people we touch. He has a far reach and this world is lucky to have had him. Thinking of all those that may be hurting from this loss.

  2. You've shared such a thoughtful tribute to this man, Ruth. I'm sorry for your and everyone's loss. It sounds like his life touched so many positively. Hugs to you and your friend earlier that you spoke of, too. It is indeed hard to say goodbye.

  3. Thank you. It helps.

  4. His life did touch so many people. In the service they mentioned that he lived is life by Pres Kennedy's quote. "Ask not what your country can do for you; but rather what you can do for your country."


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