The following is essentially what i said at my grandfather’s funeral today. I typed it out after i got done mowing a few days ago, knowing that i would be saying something at the service. I got through most of it without getting too emotional. However at the end I faltered a little bit.
The other day I was mowing. See we have this old riding mower that takes a screw driver and a pair of pliers and some magic to get it started. Needless to say I didn’t want to mess with it. Instead I used a push mower. To no surprise I started thinking about Pap. It’s not a coincidence that I was thinking about while mowing because my fondest memories of him are centered around him fixing push mowers. I didnt know my grandfather when he worked in a steel mill or as game warden. I knew him as a lawnmower repairman. Sitting out front of his red garage. For awhile there if you lived in Mercer or around the area chances are you had you bought your mower or had fixed or repaired by Russell. He was also the type of guy that if you were a little short he would just simply “pay me next time” and the thing is there was always a next time because you didn’t necessarily come to get your mower fixed but for the coffee that my grandma provided and most importantly the conversation. My grandfather was the type that could go weeks, months, years without seeing you and he would simply just pick up the conversation like it was yesterday. I remember people stopping by that he hadn’t seen in years stay and talk like best friends. That was my pap. A great man that seemed to have unlimited patience with me and my brothers. A man that would always let you settle up later. A man that you could slip into a conversation with as if it never ended. One day I’ll have another conversation with my pap, and I assure you it will be as if no time has passed.