December 7, 2013 was a Saturday. I called home that morning, and Dad answered. He told me that Grandpa was not doing well, and not expected to live very long. Dad was in the middle of finding a flight to SLC for Mom, so I told him I could drive her to Logan. The weather had been snowy and stormy, so I started gathering up things to put in my trunk: salt, water, a blanket, a flashlight. I called my friend, Jake Ritchie, to ask for a shovel. He said his parents, who live in American Fork, would not be home for most of the day, but would leave 2 shovels outside their garage for me to take whenever I could get there. Dad called back and said Mom would be landing at 4pm. Bob and I both needed to be in SLC for the day-at the Family History Library and at the Business College. We decided that we would drive together and Bob would take the train back down to Provo. I was to meet Bob at the train station at 11. By this time, the roads were already pretty bad and it took me twice as long to get to the station as it normally would, which was a sign of things to come. Once with Bob, I was able to get the shovels and we made it to SLC safely.
A few hours later, Mom’s plane landed. We were so grateful that it was not delayed. The weather was much better by this time and I was optimistic that we would be in Logan in no time. However, as soon as we reached North Salt Lake the snow returned and the roads were treacherous. Traffic was 35 miles an hour on I-15. Weslid and fish-tailed some, but we were safe. The day before, (Dec. 6) I had a flat tire. Once it was in the shop, I learned that both front tires needed to be replaced. I was so discouraged at the cost that when they told me I also needed new windshield wipers I told them I didn’t want them. The man kindly gave them to me for free. I believe he was inspired, and that the flat tire was also a miracle. We would not have made it to Logan safely without the new tires and wipers.
We finally made it to Brigham and decided that it would be best to take the longer route through Tremonton rather than try to make it through the canyon. At this point, what would normally be an hourish drive had taken us 3 hours. After one more hour and a few heart-stopping phone calls from Aunt Shauna, we finally made it to Logan. I pulled into Grandpa’s driveway and Mom jumped out before I was fully parked. Shauna, Shari, and Sharla were waiting at the door for her. A few minutes later, as Grandpa opened his eyes for the last time, Mom was able to look into his eyes and tell him she loved him, and he was able to see and hear that she was there. What a blessing from our Heavenly Father.
I can’t even begin to describe the heart-wrenching anxiety Mom and I felt as we drove those long 4 hours. We wanted so desperately to be with Grandpa and I was so worried for Mom. We feel so blessed that we made it safely and that Grandpa was able to see that Mom was there.
I know that Heavenly Father was guiding us to Logan safely, and in answer to so many prayers He allowed us to arrive and see Grandpa before he passed away. I learned a lot during the hours that followed, and never once felt that what was happening was wrong. About a month before, I had dreamed that Grandpa told me to come see him before he died. For various reasons, I didn’t make it up to Logan. When we arrived the night of the 7th, I felt so guilty for not coming sooner. But as the hours passed I felt that even though Grandpa couldn’t see that I was there, and I wasn’t sure if he could feel my hand or hear my voice, his spirit was completely aware of everyone there and the love that we all have for him. I really learned how much our spirits and our bodies are truly two separate things, and that God is in control of our time on earth.
I love you all.