Sunday, September 7, 2008

My Papa John

John W. Bailey

August 14, 1922 - August 31, 2008

A week ago today my sweet grandfather passed away. He had many health problems so even though it wasn't a surprise it was still very sad. About 6 weeks ago, against his nurses best judgement, he managed to get up enough strength to get on a plan and fly to Dallas to meet McKenzie and to see Ryan again. He kept saying he just had to hold that little girl. Little McKenzie doesn't realize what an impact she had on him. It seemed as though that was one of the last thing he wanted to do before he died. Once he did it I think he realized that he was ready to meet his Jesus. Sitting by his side as he took his last breathe was his three sons and wife of 66 years. Papa has 8 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren. Being the youngest of 8 he always called me his "doll baby". He always told me even though I was now over 30 and had two kids I would always be the doll baby in the family. I remember when either we would go and visit him or he would come see us every morning for breakfast we would look under our plate and there would be a dollar bill. My brother and I of course thought we were rich and got excited about it each morning. They tell me when my brother was young Papa John would throw change on the street because Jeff got so excited to find it and pick it up of course not knowing it was Papa going before him and putting it there. When his great-grandson Mason would visit he would always ask Papa what he had in his shirt pocket. He knew he would find the dollar of the day. On the day of his viewing my uncle laid a dollar bill on his casket. To some people that was just a bill, but to his loved ones that meant so many smiles. I know Papa is in a better place and I know he is praising our Lord, but I do pray that God comfort my dad and his brothers as they live without a father and give peace to my grandmother as she lives without the man she has been devoted to for many decades. My cousin had a baby boy at the beginning of August and named him John Bailey so through that little boy his name will live on and in our hearts we will hold the memories of him forever.
At the funeral

We love you Papa John


Chastity said...

Mari, what a special grandfather and what a blessing he was to your family. And what a gift, to have sweet pictures of him holding your darling babies.
I bet God placed many dollar bills at your grandfather's banquet table. You and your family are still in my prayers...

MISTY and CO... said...

"A grandpa is someone you never outgrow your need for..."

I only met your sweet grandpa one time but I know your father well. With that said, Papa John is dancing in heaven because of the legacy he left on Earth. Your father is amazing because he was brought up in such a wonderful home. I LOVE the photos and am glad Kenzie and Ryan have such precious family treasures to see when they are older.

we love you guys more than words can say!

The Arrington Family said...

What a sweet tribute to your grandfather. I am so glad He got to spend some special time with you & the kids.