Friday, April 3, 2009

In Loving Memory: Derrell Alexander Lindsay (Apr 2, 1920 - Apr 3, 2009)

My Grandfather, Derrell Alexander Lindsay, passed away peacefully this morning at 3 a.m. while in the car with my grandmother on the way to the hospital after he had an asthma attack. He just celebrated his 89th birthday yesterday.

I was very close to my Grandpa. They only have 4 grandchildren, so you could say we got him (and my grandma) to ourselves. :) I have so many memories of him growing up. He was always there.

Here is what I wrote on my Facebook page this morning:

In loving memory of my grandfather who just passed away this morning, April 3, 2009. He was a great man - someone I always looked up to and aspired to be like. He performed our wedding in the Portland LDS temple (as well as my two married brothers' weddings). He was an outdoor enthusiast. And he had the best sense of humor - always playing jokes on people, tickling, and saying the funniest things. He also had a vast vocabulary of words that I'd never heard of. Words like spizerinctum.

He served in WWII, was a dentist most of his life, had a photographic memory, and had many friends who cherished him. He loved to read, loved the Gospel, loved my Grandmother and our family. At 5'6" he was always frustrated with his height his entire life, but always was a spiritual giant to the rest of us. The church and gospel were the most important thing in his life aside from family. He dedicated many hours of voluntary service to the church as a regional representative, stake president, and bishop.

He and my grandmother backpacked the mountains of Eastern Oregon for a good 30 years. He only had one lung, bad asthma, and in recent years had a difibulator put in. He has given us many scares - he's been run over by a runaway truck, fell into a sink hole with a snowmobile on top of him, has had many heart attacks....and yet outlived most all of his 6 siblings and loved life despite all these ailments.

He died peacefully in the car on the way to the hospital after an asthma attack the day after his 89th birthday.

He is survived by his wife of 63 years ( my grandmother), Thelma Sutherland Lindsay, their daughters Carolyn Lindsay Southworth and Leslie Lindsay Arbogast, their 4 grandchildren Michael Southworth, Jennifer Southworth Thomas, Shaun Southworth, and Stephen Southworth, and 5 (and 1/2) great-grandchildren.

Rest in peace. We love you and will miss you Grandpa. Don't worry - we will take good care of Grandma. I know you held on this long just for her.

The most recent photo I have with him - this past Christmas 2008

Preston's baby blessing - Aug 2008

At our wedding, March 2005

At my younger brother, Stephen's wedding - Apr 2005

Both of my grandpa's kissing my mother on my parents wedding day (1973)

My family at General Conference - 1985?

My family at the Seattle airport picking up my grandparents after serving a 2 year mission in New Zealand. My grandpa's family came to Oregon from New Zealand in the early 1900s. They had a homestead near the Bay of Islands for 30 years after coming there from Ireland/Scotland.

Just a few of MANY outdoor adventures with Grandma and Grandpa

My dad, me, and grandparents at their home in Eastern Oregon


Roemhildt Family Fun said...

Your Grandpa is an amazing man. I'm so glad i was able to meet him. Your family will be in our prayers. We love you guys and give your grandma a hug.

Ciarra said...

I am so sorry to hear about your grandpa . . . but what a life! Through your words it appeared that he loved and was loved as well as anyone should be! I'm so happy he got to see Preston :)

Daniel L.Thomas said...

What a man...I remember visiting their home one day with you. Both your grandparents were so warm and welcoming. 89 years is a legend of a life. My most sincere sympathy to both you and your family.

Mama Dew said...

Oh Jenni, so sorry to hear about your grandfather. He was very warm and welcoming the time we met him. It was obvious he was like that always.

Steve and Tammy said...

Ahh, Jenni, my heart goes out to you right now. I've known you forever, it seems, and your grandpa was always one of your happiest topics of discussion. I know how worried you were about him and his health for the longest time.

I'm glad for him and for you that he was able to officiate for all your weddings (you and your brothers). I know that was very important to you, and I can't imagine it having been any less important to him.

Though I've never met him, I feel like I knew him through you, and I have no doubt there is rejoicing in heaven today.

All our love with you and your mom and grandma,

Steve & Tammy

Steve and Ileana said...

I think you summed up just perfectly how much we all love and respect Grandpa for being such a great man, a spiritual giant, and a fun-loving grandfather. We will all miss you Grandpa until we meet again. Rest in peace.


Kate said...

What a sweet tribute. I'm so sorry for your loss.

Lori-ann said...

A perfect tribute for someone who obviously was loved by all and had a full life. I feel for your loss, but the knowledge of the gospel always makes these times so much easier.


carlen said...

Sorry for your loss, Jenni! But somehow, i can't think of a more appropriate time of year than Easter when we gratefully reflect on the glorious resurrection and know that we will be one day reunited with our loved ones! My dad passed away on April 4th, nine years ago and we found that the timing was a blessing to us. Glad you have so many fun memories with your grandpa!