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Celebrating Life Even After Death

An unexpected gust of wind brightens the mood at the memorial service for her beloved father.

An artist's rendering of paper flying in the air

Nobody loved life more than Daddy.

“I don’t think it’s possible to live long enough to do all the things I want to try,” he once told me. Daddy sure came close: He’d been a rancher, a rodeo cowboy, a soldier in World War II, a salesman, a poet, a preacher, and a local radio and television personality.

The Lord gave him 91 good years, and Daddy turned every one into a celebration. “It doesn’t seem right that the last event Daddy will go to is a funeral,” I told my mother the morning of his burial.

“He would have much preferred a party,” she said. “Streamers and confetti were more his style.”

But without Daddy, we couldn’t imagine having a party.

The memorial service opened with a hymn, “When We All Get to Heaven,” and everyone in the church sang along: “What a day of rejoicing that will be.”

The instant the song was finished a wind passed over Daddy’s casket. The papers on the preacher’s stand flew up into the air like an explosion of confetti. Mom and I looked at each other in happy surprise. Daddy wanted us to know he was in heaven. That was something to celebrate.


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