Here I am finally. I have been absent from my blog for almost a month.
Last month on August 28th, my oldest brother passed away suddenly. The phone call came at 6:00 a.m. in the morning. It was also my oldest son’s birthday. Oh my………..no words. Paul William Boughner was seven years older than me. We were not close as children because by the time I came along, he was seven years old and off to school. We lived in Goshen, Indiana on Seventh Street. He was active in Cub Scouts and then Boy Scouts and when I was in Junior High School he was in Vermont in Voluntary Service. Next came a wife and two sons. And then I was married and busy with my young family which also produced two sons.
Paul was a Kindergarten teacher for 19 years. After a divorce, he moved to Indianapolis and worked for the Department of Education there. At the time of his death, he was working part-time at Joann Fabrics as a “jack-of-all-departments” guy. He loved to garden and over the last several years had taken up painting. We were closer after he moved and we shared a love of antiques, cooking and making things. He painted and I sewed.
I am so grateful for our time together in South Haven, MI at our family reunion in June of this summer. He was a big supporter of my blog.
Here we all are are—well almost all of us. I have another brother that is six years younger than I am. I was about a month old here. That is Bruce in the front and Paul in the back with his chin in his hand. I love these old photos. Look how brown they both were from a summer of playing outside in the sun.
That smile! I don’t know what grade this was but I think he is about 10 years old here.
This picture was most likely taken at Deer Forest. I know he was 10 in this picture and I think this is the same plaid shirt as the previous picture.
Fast forward to my wedding day. Paul sang “The Lord’s Prayer” during the ceremony. Paul was also a fantastic pianist. He played at his church in Indianapolis often and sang in the choir there.
Fast forward again to June 2014. He was manning the grill during our family reunion in South Haven, MI.
Life is short. Love your family and friends. Make time for one another. Appreciate one another in both your differences and similarities. It is still odd to think that he will not be there anymore when the rest of the family is together.
Thank you for joining me on this short trip down memory lane. It has been hard to get back to my blog as I wanted to do this short tribute and just could not. I have read and re-read this and am not happy with the finished product as there are so many pictures in my mind that I do not have and so many pictures scattered amongst all our households that I was unable to gather. There are so many memories unshared but not enough space or time to share them.
I am ending as he requested: with my favorite picture of Frank and Vanessa. They will miss him too.