When my boys’ grandfather celebrated his 69th birthday in October he had a secret. He was ill, despite saying the doctor had given him a clean bill of health.
Before Thanksgiving he surprised us by going into the hospital. Blood clot in his lung? Pneumonia? We were confused, but not too worried.
But, he declined rapidly and soon we were told of feeding tubes and life support and x-rays and lung scans.
There was something in his lungs and it was growing.
Saturday we got the call that he wasn’t going to make it and that we should stay put a state away because he was fading so fast.
Still, to give him every chance, he was kept on a respirator until Monday. Once off the respirator, it would most likely be minutes.
He is a tough old guy, so it took more than 50 hours, until 1:00 this morning, for his lungs to give out.
Lungs that had powered him as he ran on the green hills of Tennessee as a boy. Lungs that helped him shout at every home game UT played. Lungs used to laugh at delight as he spent time with his five beautiful grandsons.
So sorry not to see more birthdays with you, Toby. Rest in peace.
This post is sponsored by American Cancer Society.
Please, don’t smoke, and see your doctor for preventive care.