19 July 2011

Everett Lewis Baerwaldt 1927-2011

 

My wonderful grandfather passed away Tuesday evening after suffering a massive stroke last Wednesday. He spent the last 6 days struggling with his hospitalization, his body recovered but his mind was not present. Mom reported that his wrists were all bloodied from struggling against the restraints trying to pull out the IV and other monitors. Grandma and her children decided to remove Grandpa from the restraints and allow him to rest in hospice care instead of intensive care. He passed quietly away a couple hours later surrounded by his wife and three of their 6 children.

When I returned from my mission in 2000 I decided to attend graduate school. I was accepted to many prestigious universities but ultimately decided to attend USU in Logan so I could live with my grandparents. My intent was to attend school and save money by living with them and trading rent for cleaning, cooking, and support for my aging grandparents. Little did I know that their love and support would change my life instead. I have so many memories floating around in my head the past couple days. Most of them so deliciously happy I cannot help but laugh and smile. I will miss my grandpa dearly. I inherited his smile, had I not lived with them I would've never noticed. Here are a couple precious memories:

*Grandpa giving me the phone bill highlighted in yellow with all the long-distance calls I supposedly made. It was a treat to argue with him over mysterious calls I never made.

*Listening to Grandpa and Grandma argue. My favorite: Grandma, "Bubs, will you please (do something which I forgot)" Grandpa, "Woman what do you want me to do? Stand on my head and shoot bb's out my butt?"

*Grandma yelling from the porch for Everett to not mow over her precious lilac bush. Grandpa glancing over from his perch on the tractor pulling a huge mower, getting a gleam in his eye, gassing the tractor and mowing right over that lilac. Then grandma taking his credit card and buying the biggest bush she could find.

*Snuggling on Grandpa's lap talking about my day and asking him to pop out his fake teeth just for kicks.

*Going on a diet. He'd sit on the recumbent bike, slowly pedaling and eating a slim fast shake, cookies, and summer sausage

*Him telling me the best cure for any ailment is ice cream. We'd eat ice cream together and sit on the front porch watching the sunset and licking out of our melting ice cream.

*Grandpa continuously puttering around the backyard and garage melding various objects together trying to fix one thing or another. Many times he failed but he succeeded just as often. He helped me with my car changing the brakes, oil, tires, and such. I get a laugh out each time I view the shed he made from old pallets. His creativity with engines, electricity, and such was awe-inspiring. 

Grandpa...I wish you could meet my new little Everett. He is so sweet and amazing just like you. I named him after you because one day he will grow up knowing what a great Grandfather you were. I hope that one day Everett will pray just like you. No one I know can offer a prayer like my Grandpa Baerwaldt. You always brought tears to my eyes with your tender prayers. I love you, Bubs!

8 Stupendous Remarks:

The Haley Family said...

great memories, thanks for sharing!!!

Her Royal Highness said...

*tears*. That was lovely.

J Man said...

Your decision to go to USU certainly was insipred.

Maleia Titus said...

What a sweet and tender tribute to your grandfather. He sounds like he was quite the sassy guy and would have been fun to know! How neat that your youngest carries his name! Thank you for sharing this!

Taylor's said...

Amazing! Speechless! Amazing!

Jess said...

what a lovely tribute to your Grandpa. That is so awesome that you have so many good memories with him in it....plus that lilac bush story cracked me up! :)

The Carnavale Family said...

I'm so sorry about your loss. You're grandfather sounds like a wonderful man. What precious memories!

Christine said...

So sorry for your loss. Treasure those memories. How wonderful that you were able to be so close to your grandparents.