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William John

At 92, he still has amazing blue eyes and a killer smile. I have a sneaking suspicion that’s the reason my grandma picks matching outfits for the two of them. The single ladies (put ya hands up) in the club assisted living facility greatly outnumber the men and Grandma is just making it clear Grandpop is taken.

Due to financial difficulties, his mother was forced to send him to a children’s home at age 7. She was able to bring back home when he was 16. The children’s home didn’t teach him much about the amenities of life, and to this day my grandpa is more of the strong, silent type. He doesn’t say a lot; he’s more content to sit back and observe. But when he does choose to speak, it’s typically clever, witty, or wise. I respect him and love hearing little snippets of what goes on in his head.

During WWII, Grandpop was stationed on the aircraft carrier USS Cabot. Somewhere between the Marshall Islands and Okinawa, the Cabot was hit by two kamikaze planes. While he made it through the war in tact, he could not escape profound emotional scarring.

Grandpop is a talented man (I’m honored to inherit a sliver of his creative gene). He was once a sign painter by trade. He made beautiful furniture and clocks. He took pictures of all my grandma’s flower arrangements for calendars and books. He built a darkroom in the basement of their retirement home in Georgia and developed and printed his own work.

In a nutshell: I think my grandpa is awesome.

Happy birthday Grandpop! I love you.

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  1. Larry Reesey

    A great man indeed.

  2. Kathy

    Beautiful tribute Beth. He certainly is a pretty awesome dad, granddad and great-granddad!!

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