My Dad lost his long battle on February 4, 2001. He was the strongest, most courageous person I have ever known. My Dad was ill his whole life but he lived for 68 years. He was born a "blue baby", which we think means that he had a whole in his heart as an infant.
He overcame that obstacle only to have TB as a young child. He had asthma, emphysema, prostate cancer, heart disease and diabetes. But he died of kidney failure.My Dad's death was a horrible experience for everyone, but he died valiantly and with no complaints and with such strength. I hope that when it comes my time that I have the strength that he had. He is truly my "hero" and I will love him forever.
Dad had triple bypass on July 2, 1990. His doctors did not think he would make it pastthe surgery, but he surprised them all. When they opened his chest, his lungs inflated to twice their normal size and they could not get them reinserted into his chest. They told us that he had 72 hours to get the fluid out of his lungs so they could get them back in. Well, typical of my Dad, he waited for 70 1/2 hours. He made it through that surgery after a difficult time, but he was victorious. In the following years, he has had numerous angioplasties and 4 stents, but he made it through those too with suprising strength.
In August of 2000, my dad took my mother on an Alaskan Cruise, we know now that that was his final hurrah. My Dad withstood a lot of pain and agony on that trip but he did it for my mother. He was not feeling well at all and it took all of his strength to endure the flight.
By December of 2000 it was apparent that his health was declining rapidly. At the end of January he was admitted to the hospital and had complete kidney failure. The doctors told him that he would not be able to make it through the dialysis, his heart was too weak, but they had to do something, so they called us all home and started the dialysis. He made it through the first treatment with flying colors (again, he had to prove the doctors wrong). He had a second dialysis treatment and everything looked great. On the third day, he told them that he wanted no more. My Dad had decided to give up the fight and refused any treatments.
It was the most horrible three days of our lives as we stood vigil and waited for my Dad to pass from this earth. We talked with him, comforted him, cryed with him, laughed with him, reminised with him, but mainly, we just loved him. At the time, it was suprisingly easy to just sit and hold his hand, to ring the nurses when he needed painkillers, to tell him that I loved him dearly. Now, those are the memories that haunt me the most. I cannot get those horrible memories out of my mind. The pain and thesuffering he had to endure. I hope that someday those memories will fade and the memories of having the greatest father on earth, will surface.
Not a day goes by without shedding a tear for my Dad even though I know that he is being comforted by God and his mother and sisters. I miss him so very much.
Always know how much I love you Dad and how proud I am of you for the valiant fight for life, for all the courage that you showed us, for all the love that you have given us and for all of the things you have taught us. Be at peace Dad.