This week has included two funerals.
The first was for a second cousin who was 49 years old. He had achieved so many great things in his short life--it was certainly a celebration of a life well lived!
Although Dan was born with hydrocephelitis and spina bifida, he proved doctors wrong and not only learned to walk, he learned to run! With the encouragement of his very supportive family who treated him and challenged him as they did all their children, he went to regular school and was exceedingly smart (reading the dictionary for fun!) He then went on to college and then on to seminary school where he became a pastor AND had a full career as a Lutheran pastor throughout Iowa, South Dakota and Colorado. He challenged the walls and beliefs of what someone with "special needs"could accomplish.
He was so good at conversation and was a light to so many. He will be missed but was ready to go home to heaven after suffering the last few years with ALS.
At the funeral I was able to visit with my Aunt Harriet who is from Colorado,
my mom (who was my co-pilot for the journey)
and my "best-cousin," Amanda, who was my side-kick on that side of the family all the while growing up. She is only one month younger than me! ... which is a BIG deal as the rest of our cousins (which are MANY) on that side of the family are at least a decade older than my siblings and I.
Strawberry Point is the town where my cousin Dan and his family live.
It's a neat town if you happen to be in Iowa.
There is the Strawberry Pt. grocery, The Strawberry Point gas station, Strawberry Point coffee house, Strawberry Gifts ... you get the idea ... and to top it off they have this HUGE strawberry by their town hall. I remember being in AWE of this as a child ... and ya know what?
I still am!