I am standing upon the seashore. A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the morning breeze and starts for the blue ocean. She is an object of beauty and strength. I stand and watch her until at length, she hangs like a speck of white cloud just where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other.
Someone at my side finally says, "There, she is gone!"
"Gone where?" I ask.
Then I realize - she is gone only from my sight. That is all.
She is just as large In mast and hull and sail as when she left my side. She is just as able to bear the load of living freight to her destined port.
Her diminished size is in me, not in her. And just at that moment when someone beside me says, "There, she is gone!"... there are other eyes watching her coming, and other voices to take up the glad shout, "Look, here she comes!"
And that is dying.
- Henry Van Dyke
It's with a joyous heart that I report the passing of my step-father, James Edward Dolan, our 'Poppa JD.'
He departed from this world yesterday, 8/13/2014, 6:55 PM.
He was a consummate sportsman, who loved to shoot, fish and ride horses. There was no adventure he was not up for. He taught me a lot and raised me as his own, after my biological father had passed during my youth. In most ways, he was the only father I had ever known.
And while none here knew him, he was one of us. He was a lifetime member if the North American Fishing Club and I have fond memories of our angling exploits. He was also a Marine Corp Golden Gloves champ, a truck driver, machinist, leader and irascible grouch, at times.
Hey, no one is perfect.
I will miss him dearly, but my wife and I were fortunate to sit beside him at his last breath. He went peacefully and with chin up; he said he was sorry to put us through it. That was him - thinking of others to the end.
Until we meet again on the far shore, Poppa JD, God speed and rest.
I loved you, as did so many.