In Loving Memory of Grandpa Charles

December 2, 2009
By ...Travis... GOLD, Medford, Oregon
...Travis... GOLD, Medford, Oregon
11 articles 0 photos 9 comments

Favorite Quote:
while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us...

We pulled into the Abby’s parking lot off Riverside Avenue in Medford. Parking in the closest empty spot, my family and I got out of the car and headed inside. It was Sunday night and we were meeting my grandparents for a family night out and pizza. After about 10 minutes of sitting at a big table in the middle of the restaurant, my Grandpa Charles and Grandma Connie came in through the front door, as happy and healthy as ever. The large pepperoni pizza came in no time and we ate quickly and continued talking. We found out that Grandpa was going back down to California to work on some power lines, and he’d be gone for at least a week and be back just in time for Christmas. We sat in the restaurant for another 20 minutes before my grandparents left, and we went home, still with the taste of food on our tongues and the warmth of love in our hearts.
Two days later was another normal day at school; Wake up at seven, eat and shower, and go to school. All was fine. At 3:32 I got off the bus, said final good byes to all my friends, and went in the front door. There in the dining room was my mom. I walked over ready to tell her about my day. As I walked around the corner, I noticed my dad was home from work and was sitting in one of the chairs. My Mom told me to sit down. My dad and I sat there as she told us the story. Grandpa Charles was in California working on some power lines. Around lunchtime he and the rest of his crew were driving down a dirt road along the Klamath River to a good spot for lunch. On their way, the dirt under the boon truck he was driving gave way. The big truck on that steep road got momentum and rolled into the river. My grandpa was found stuck between the seat and the trucks door…

My dad began to cry. I on the other hand didn’t know what to do. Half of me wanted to breakdown and cry right there. The other half wanted to believe it was all a dream. Knowing we had things to take care of, my dad stopped crying and we all got in the car. Now was the hard part. My mom had found out because the other linemen didn’t know my Grandma’s phone number so they had to call my aunt and cousins who live in Gold Hill. She had to call us because she couldn’t get a hold of my Grandma at work. Now it was up to us to go to grandma’s house to tell her.

What was only an hour and a half felt like an eternity. We got to my Grandma’s house at 4:00. My Grandma wouldn’t get home until 6:30. We sat in the house fidgeting, agitated, sweating, and barely holding back tears. My aunt, uncle, and two cousins arrived from Gold Hill at 6:00. I had an adrenalin rush every time a car drove past the driveway. Finally, we heard a car pull up to the dark driveway and honk……Grandma. We heard the door to the garage open up and my Grandma came in. My mom went in to the other room to explain, leaving the rest of the family in the living room. My Grandma started to greet my mom but went immediately quiet when my mom started talking. Hearing the whispers through the doorway was agony for I knew what she was saying. Suddenly, from the same room as the two women came the most horrifying scream I’ve ever heard. As if from hell, it echoed through the entire house, and out into the world beyond.
My grandma came through the door being held up by my mom. She looked so sad and pail, you could hardly recognize her. Her eyes were like nothing else. She had a seat on the edge of the couch. We all gathered around to comfort her and pray. We spent an hour explaining to her what happened, and how we found out. She was doing her best to hold back tears, but was having a hard time doing so. Everyone spent some time remembering him and all the girls cried. I even saw my two older brothers shed some tears. Everyone did, except me. On the way out the door we asked her if she needed us to go to her church with her the next day. She said she would be glad to have us come. We all got in our cars and left Grandma at home for some time by herself.
That night nobody spoke at all. On my way down the hall to my room it all suddenly came to me. It wasn’t a dream. I broke down, and cried, right there in the middle of the hall. Falling against the wall I slid to the floor. All my thoughts, all my memories, all my happy moments with Grandpa, came crashing on me like a pile of rocks. All week I had been waiting to see Grandpa at Christmas. It was at that moment that I realized I wouldn’t have Grandpa for Christmas. My mom came out of her room and over to comfort me. She told me how much she knew I loved him and how I loved him the most of all our family. We both cried together. I went to bed my face still wet with tears.
That weekend on Saturday we went to my Grandpa’s funeral. Some of the men off his crew were there to say they were sorry. They told us how much of a good guy he was, and how they loved having him around, no matter what. Some of my other relatives were there. At the end of the funeral we all prayed said our good byes and went home. The next day was Sunday. We all woke up and got dressed for church. We called my Grandma to see when and where to meet. We left our house to meet my Grandma at church. About an hour later we pulled into the Trail Christian Fellowship parking lot. We found my Grandma’s van and parked next to it. My mom gave my Grandma a hug. We all walked in together.
We sat down next to Grandma about four rows from the back. The service didn’t start for another thirty minutes so we sat there listening to Grandma talking of all the memories she had with Grandpa. After a little bit, my grandma started to explain how they used to sit in the very back where there were two seats against the wall. After Grandpa got his hearing aids, he could actually hear the songs so they moved up a few rows to where we were sitting. A thought occurred to me, God gave Grandpa hearing aids a week before he died. God knew he would like to hear all the things of earth before going home. I leaned forward into the isle and looked over at my Grandma. I told her my thought, not sure of what her reaction would be. My Grandma looked back at me with faith in her eyes. For the first time in over a week, My Grandma shed tears of Joy. “Thank you Travis, that helps, thank you.” But I could tell it wasn’t just me she was talking to… It was God.

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