After a really hard battle with lung cancer, one of the most treasured men in my life passed away today.
The story behind this picture reminds me of things I loved about him. My grandpa couldn't wait to see me get married. He loves Hunter and has told me over and over that he admires our relationship.
But first thing he said when I asked him to escort my mom down the aisle.. was a sweet and genuine question..." Do I have to wear a tie?"
"No grandpa, you wear whatever you want. :) " No tie it is. (What a handsome man!)
I loved this man like a father. When we were at the hospital around 2 am this morning, my amazing Uncle Kevin was intentional about discussing the things we adore about Grandpa Bob:
His laugh. As my cousin Bailey reminded us, his whole upper body shook when he laughed. It came from deep inside him. And he didn't laugh at just anything. He was very authentic when he laughed at something and it made you feel special when it was with you.
His hugs. Oh my gosh how that man could hug me. Honestly, sometimes I would have to hold my breath because my lungs were too squished. He showed his love through those hugs. And let me tell you, my grandpa loved the heck out of me.
His protectiveness. I went to Africa in the summer of '06 for 30 days. My grandpa worried constantly about me every single day. At the time there was a civil war going on around the area that I stayed and I know he watched every news clip there was and called my mom over and over to make sure I was alright. He would fight a bear...lion... or hormonal teenage boy for me or any of his grandchildren any day of the week.
His snarkyness. My grandpa was snarky until the very end. His entire left lung had collapsed and would make a little bit of a wheezing noise as he breathed. The doctors offered to give him medicine that would reduce the sound and classic Grandpa Bob responded: "Why? Does the sound bother you?"
He died about 24 hours later.
Grandpa Bob was extremely loved and respected. When we found out that he had cancer, the whole family put their game faces on. God knew the exact time to take him, and He did.
We love you, Grandpa, and we will miss you every day.