Zufelt Family Feb 2015

Zufelt Family Feb 2015

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Grandpa Dean's Funeral

It’s been nuts being in the USA again. I am so happy in Singapore, and was happy in Virginia and Texas before that but for the first time I’ve felt the heart pangs that it sure would be nice to live in Utah again. Not sure I’ve ever felt that before. I’ve been so focused on seeing the country, then the world for the last twenty plus years it hasn’t occurred to me to want to live somewhere I have already seen. But coming home this time for the funeral Utah seems a little bit new. The mountains are so beautiful. The snow such an amazing thing to see and feel. A warm home in the cold season seems so much more like a home than the air con concrete shell with cold marble floors we have now. Carpet. Christian churches dotting the city. Trucks. Family.


My siblings have scattered in the wind but Brian’s immediate family is close together in Utah. And they are so much fun. It was great to come together and celebrate Grandpas life together. To see all his posterity together because Brian’s uncle Todd, aunt Karen, cousin Shelley and all her little family were there staying at his parents place too. I think he was proud of his little clan. He was born nearly one hundred years ago, he would have turned ninety nine this year. I loved hearing the stories of his life from Craig’s telling of his life sketch and Shelley sharing stories from the five grandkids.


He was the driving force in his chapter of the American Legion. Brian’s family went for years and years on Memorial Day to the small Centerfield Cemetery. One year after we were married I joined them and won’t ever forget that morning. They got up early, early in the morning and hauled a big load of flags and heavy metal flag poles to the small town cemetery. Grandpa knew which headstones were veterans. I suspect he probably personally knew every single person buried there and I believe in his mind honoring their memories was one of the most important things he could do. His patriotism was something to be admired and helping him was a bit of an honor. We worked to hammer stakes in the ground, mount the poles and hang the flags before anyone else was probably out of bed on a holiday morning. The other veterans tell stories of how he persuaded them all to join up and serve and what a great example he was. They were all there to honor him with military honors firing off shots at the burial site and then Anne was presented with a flag.


I think the day would have made him proud. He was a great man. I wish we were closer to have spent more time around these last few years since he stopped being able to come visit us wherever we lived. I had hoped to get a picture of him with all four of my kids this summer. Now I’ll have to settle for this picture of his four newest great grandchildren born in the last six months. He had eighteen great grandchildren which made for a pretty busy family party and he would watch all the action from the couch while we visited with him. It won’t quite seem right this summer to come home and not visit with Grandpa Dean. He is loved and will be missed.


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