Goodbye, Dad...

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Brian Austin, Jan 18, 2006.

  1. Brian Austin

    Brian Austin En-Route

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    On the whimsical and completely unsubstantiated belief that the Internet has reached every corner of our human consciousness, I hope that someday, he can see this via Google or something...

    Dear Dad,

    I knew in my gut that something was wrong when I didn't see you log into instant messaging yesterday morning. You're such a creature of habit, you know. Get up, get dressed, go outside for two or three cigarettes and cups of coffee, play ball with the dog, and hit the computer's power switch on the way to your morning shower. You probably didn't realize that I intentionally set up the instant messaging to start and login to make sure you were up and functioning okay since you usually woke up after we left for work.

    When you didn't answer the phone calls, my heart started beating faster. Our wonderful neighbor checked the house. Your car was home...but the dog was in the crate, where she would be after locked her up the night before. This was early afternoon by the time he got there. Way too late for her to be there. I already knew the situation, since nothing short of death would keep you from taking care of your buddy.

    The neighbor broke into the house like I asked him to. You didn't answer the yelling...and then he opened your bedroom door. It looks like you had just gotten up when it happened. The ME is calling it a massive heart attack as a preliminary guess, based on their observations. Based on your position, the odds are you were unconscious before you hit the floor.

    I'm so sorry I wasn't there. We went to California for work, as we do every month. You were taking care of everything for us, just like you always did. You were so dependable that way. You seemed to be fine when we spoke on the phone the day before...but that's how this stuff happens, I guess.

    Knowing you, I suspect your last thoughts, if you even had the chance, were how to take care of the dog and your bird, Bud. The dog is fine, although she gave the neighbor a scare after getting rather upset that he was the one opening the crate and not you. She knows something isn't right and keeps visiting me to get some attention...although I'm not sure who's doing the consoling here. Bud isn't doing so well, though. I'm going into your room and talking to him for a few minutes every once in a while. I turned on the radio, just like you did, and he seemed to perk up a little. He didn't eat at all yesterday or today, it looks like. Knowing how bonded he was to you, I'm not sure what to do there. I've e-mailed a few people for some help there.

    I'm glad you came to live with me for the last few months. I had a lot of fun, learning more about you and sharing some great times. I'm glad we got to go flying, especially to Sedona. And the roadtrips were a lot of fun, trading the camera back and forth. I know my shop would still be unfinished if you hadn't motivated me to work on it. The cabinets went up a lot faster with you there. Not sure how I'm going to do that kitchen now, like we were planning.

    I'm sorry that this had to happen, just now when things seemed to finally be going your way. Retirement wasn't voluntary, I know, but you were starting to realize how much life was out there for you to enjoy. The neighbors have all been over, saying great things about you as well. Despite your meager possessions and little money, you proved that it's not about what you have on the outside so much as what you have on the inside.

    You were...and always are...loved, Dad.

    Love,

    Your proud and grateful son...Brian
     
  2. Michael

    Michael Pattern Altitude

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    Brian. I am deeply moved by your post. Your dad is proud of you Im sure. Sorry about your loss.
     
  3. Ken Ibold

    Ken Ibold Final Approach

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    Awwww, man, I'm so sorry to hear this, Brian. What a great tribute.
     
  4. GaryO

    GaryO Pre-takeoff checklist

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    If he can see the post I am sure he would be very proud to have such a caring son. You have my deepest sympathies.
     
  5. RotaryWingBob

    RotaryWingBob En-Route Gone West

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    What a wonderful tribute, Brian. He couldn't have asked for a better son.
     
  6. Frank Browne

    Frank Browne Final Approach

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    I'm so sorry Brian. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family.
     
  7. Dave Krall CFII

    Dave Krall CFII Final Approach

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    Sounds like you had a good friendship and memories to be thankful for...
     
  8. spiderweb

    spiderweb Final Approach

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    I'm sure he can see this tribute.
     
  9. Dan Smith

    Dan Smith Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I'm sorry for your loss, Brian. I hope that your memories of your Dad will keep you smiling for years to come.

    Dan
     
  10. Keith Lane

    Keith Lane Pattern Altitude

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    I'm so sorry, Brian.
    One of the best pieces of advice I ever got from a fellow pilot was "Love your Dad, call every chance you get. See him and take him flying every chance you can go and tell him you love him. Tell him you don't want his money, just his company." This, right after his Dad suddenly died after my friend had moved back to his home city to be near him after a long absence due to some differencs they had suffered through.
    Your love for him is evident in your tribute. I hope I can express my feeling to my Dad half as well.
     
  11. fgcason

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    :( :(
    Whimsical maybe but you never know... I hope your message gets through Brian. Prayer flags help get the message through too.

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

    Frank.
     
  12. PoAdeleted5

    PoAdeleted5 Deleted by User Request

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    Brian,

    I'm sorry for your loss. I lost my mother under similar circumstances in October. I guess if there is any comfort in it, is that there was no suffering and over quickly.

    Every sunday evening, I still feel the need to reach for the phone and make the weekly call. But I know that there will be no answer on the other end.
     
  13. Dave Siciliano

    Dave Siciliano Final Approach

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    What a wonderful way to express your feelings for your dad! Sounds like he was a wonderful man. Certainly wouldn't be what I am today if it weren't for mine. I feel your pain and hope you got some wonderful things done with him while he was still here.

    Best,

    Dave
     
  14. Anthony

    Anthony Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Wow that was moving. Brian, my sincere sympathies to you and your family.
     
  15. gismo

    gismo Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Sorry man. At least it sounds like you had a pretty good relationship going. Some folks plan on fixing that but don't get around to it until too late. May he rest in peace and enjoy your message.
     
  16. gibbons

    gibbons En-Route

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    Brian,

    What a beautiful post. Thank you for sharing it.
    Our thoughts are with you and your family. I'm so sorry.

    Chip
     
  17. terzap

    terzap Line Up and Wait

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    {{{{{{{{{{big hug Brian}}}}}}}}}}}
    crying with you and your family on the loss of your dad.

    terry
     
  18. John J

    John J Line Up and Wait

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    Brian;

    Thank you for sharing and it is a wonderful tribute to your and your dad.

    John
     
  19. SkyHog

    SkyHog Touchdown! Greaser!

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    From the story told in the letter, I'm sure that your father watched you type it from above. He knows!

    He knows.

    I'm sorry.
     
  20. ggroves

    ggroves Pattern Altitude

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    Sorry about your loss, Brian. My prayers go out to you and your family.

    Greg
     
  21. woodstock

    woodstock Final Approach

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    Brian, I'm very sorry to hear about your Dad. :(
     
  22. Lance F

    Lance F En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Tears in my eyes right now, Brian. Very powerful writing. My prayers are with you and your family.
     
  23. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Oh, man, Brian, I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I can't imagine your concern as you called his neighbor. :(

    That was a wonderful tribute. Your father was very lucky to have you as a son, and I'm sure that somewhere he knows of your thoughts. You are lucky to have had the time with him.

    My prayers and sympathies to you and your family.

    bill
     
  24. etsisk

    etsisk En-Route

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    Brian,
    That was as sweet and sorrowful a thing as I have ever, in my life, read. God bless him, and bless your heart, too. My sympathies - and empathy - are with you and your family. I'll keep a good thought for you all.
     
  25. HPNPilot1200

    HPNPilot1200 En-Route

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    Brian,

    I'm sorry for your loss, but your words are far beyond powerful, and it was a pleasure to read them. My prayers and sympathies are with you and your family.

    Thank you so much for sharing such thoughtful, pure writing,

    Your dad has a great son ;)

    Jason
     
  26. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    What a magnificent tribute. He must have been quite a guy to have raised such a fine son.

    Blessings to you and your family.

    -- Pilawt
     
  27. Bill

    Bill Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Brian, my thoughts and prayers are with you.
     
  28. Missa

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    I'm honored that when you wanted to write a letter to your dad that you shared it with all of us. It's a tribute to our little on-line community and the out pouring of love given in response is as touching as the letter itself.

    I know that there is nothing any of us can say to make this hurt less, but you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. And thanks for sharing all your life with us.

    Missa
     
  29. Greebo

    Greebo N9017H - C172M (1976)

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    Brian,

    You have the heart and soul of a poet. Your father must be very proud of you, watching you from whatever lays beyond.

    You have my deepest sympathies for your loss, but as long as you remember him in your heart, your father will never be truly gone.

    Blessings upon you friend,
    Chuck
     
  30. MSmith

    MSmith Line Up and Wait

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    I am so sorry for your loss.

    I suspect that you will be famous now - this note will be making the rounds of the Internet for decades.

    - Mark (who doesn't usually cry at his desk this early in the morning)
     
  31. bstratt

    bstratt Cleared for Takeoff

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    Words escape me (but I'd do better if the letters on the keyboard weren't so blurred at the moment!).
     
  32. Brian Austin

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    All,

    The friendship and support here gave me the courage to put the letter here vs anywhere else, I guess. And you all have proved that with your replies. Thank you very much.

    I would trade everything I have in this world to be able to tell it to him personally, for just a few minutes. Never take something for granted. It may not be there tomorrow.
     
  33. Dave Theisen

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    So sorry for your loss Brian.

    I've got to go call my Dad.
     
  34. Carol

    Carol Line Up and Wait

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    Brian,

    I am so very sorry to hear about your dad. Know that your friends are keeping you in their thoughts. Your dad surely knew he was loved.

    Carol
     
  35. Terry

    Terry Line Up and Wait

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    Brian:

    Sorry about your loss.

    Keep your chin up....I am sure your Dad is pleased with you and proud as well.

    Terry
     
  36. gkainz

    gkainz Final Approach

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    Brian,
    As all the other posters have said it so much better than I can - thanks for sharing in such a touching way. Well done, friend. I know your dad is proud of you. As my dad went into ICU on Dec 26th, and just yesterday was moved from there to regular care, I can't begin to tell you how much your story moved me. Thanks so much. You have my prayers for comfort for you and your family.
    Greg
     
  37. RogerT

    RogerT Cleared for Takeoff

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    Brian ..

    I'm so sorry for your loss. You and your family have my thoughts
    and prayers. Your tribute is powerful and your father lives on
    in you and will be with you constantly. I'm sure he looks down
    with pride.

    Roger
     
  38. EHITCH

    EHITCH Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Brian,
    Right there with you, my dad died January 3rd. Hang on, things do get better.
    Elizabeth
     
  39. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Elizabeth,

    Sorry to hear that. My sympathies to you, too.
     
  40. grattonja

    grattonja Line Up and Wait

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    Blubbering on the keyboard...

    So sorry to hear about your loss. You wrote a lovely tribute.

    My parents are getting up toward that age now... Guess I better email mom again today...

    Thanks for reminding me.

    Jim G