The Story of a Beautiful Passing
September 20, 2014
On Saturday, September 20th, Coach Bob, your coach, teacher, friend, and our dad and grandpa, passed away peacefully at his home. He was ready to move on to heaven, but seemed to be stalling. At 2:00 in the morning his breathing changed from labored to calm as if he was in an endurance event, slow, easy, saving energy…why? He couldn’t speak, so I couldn’t know, but Dad had a plan. He always had a PLAN! All I could do was sit back and watch it unfold. Then, it became clear. He wanted his beloved caregiver, Umesh, to be by his side. Umesh arrived at 8:00am. “You were waiting for me Bob, I know it.” Dad’s breathing remained gentle and calm. At 9:25 Umesh said he was close. I put my head down on the pillow next to Dad’s and with my hand on his heart I spoke to him…all the regular things you might say to someone who is dying…”We are all okay Dad, it is okay to go, I am so joyful for you to see Mom, baby Bobby, Art, Dick, Patty, Grandma, and Grandpa and all your friends that have gone before and God, of course!” Then, it was not so much that I felt his last breath as that I felt the absence of the next and a huge rush of spirit swooshed through and around me. It felt like pure joy! Peter opened the gates to Heaven and Dad just slipped right in…not a bump in the road. If there was a scoring system for this last life event, he would have scored a perfect 10! Dad’s Catholic faith was the foundation for his very being. He loved the simple things in life…watering his plants, eating a snickers bar, sailing, building a sandcastle, feeding the birds. People meditate for years to get to that level of presence. His dedication to the traditions and practices of his religion brought him to this place. As I grieve, I will try to remember the joy he released at his passing as it far surpasses any sadness. My hope is that sharing his story will help you on this path too. He was present in his life and he was a present to life. Weren’t we lucky!
–Krisi Walthour Furbee