My father-in-law: Papa “D”

As many of you know, Tim’s dad passed away this past week and we went to WI for the funeral and to spend time with family. You can read his obituary here. We are grateful to all of you for your prayers, support and love on us during this time. Here is a letter I was able to write and have read to my father-in-law just before he died…

Dear Papa “D” –

I just wanted to write you a note and let you know what you’ve meant to me these last 11 years of Tim and I being married.

I remember the first time I met you, which was probably more like 15 years ago. It was at one of Dano’s high school football games when Tim disguised himself so that you would not recognize him and since you didn’t know me yet – we sat behind you and I asked you, “Do you know what time it is?” Then Tim revealed his identity and introduced me to you as his girlfriend.

From that moment on, I have many meaningful memories of time spent with you and your family. So many fun family vacations up north, being on the lake, shopping in Eagle RIver & Minocqua, sitting around the campfire, and so many great meals out in Denver at PF Changs and Ruth Chris Steakhouse. I have always appreciated how you really showed up for the ridiculous and silly games I would organize on our family vacations – like the craziest PJ contest and the Wildest Hat competition. We always knew we’d be in for a good laugh together when you unveiled your crazy costumes. I have enjoyed learning about your passion for music with the kids and the drive you put forth to organize the Marine Band coming to Wausau – not just once but twice!  I also have so many good memories of getting “special drinks” together at Starbucks or mixing up crazy concoctions for the “adult beverage special drinks” around the campfire. For these memories and many many more – I am grateful – and I thank God for you.

Most importantly I thank you for being Tim’s dad.  I truly feel like the luckiest girl on earth to get to be married to such a caring, sensitive, honest, hard working, and dependable man. I cannot think of anyone I respect more than Tim. Men rarely turn out to be so exceptional without a consistent and steady father figure in their lives. I owe you a heartfelt thank you for being Tim’s dad. I have been deeply blessed by you.

Since we don’t ever know what the future holds, I am grateful that you and I know the one who holds the future. And just in case I don’t see you until heaven, I will meet you there – and since they have closed down Ruth Chris Steakhouse here in Denver – I’m planning to enjoy a great meal with you on the other side of eternity.

“Love you much” – as I learned to say in the Grade household.

My thoughts, my heart and my prayers are with you right now.

In His Steady and Loving Arms,


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