Thursday, April 14, 2011


This is my house. I grew up here. (There is no snow around it right now!)  It was a mess when we moved in. Dad re-did it. I remember him making the paneling. Painting it. Installing a wood burning stove that saved us one winter when the power was out. It wasn't finished even when I went to college. But it was livable and memorable. And I loved it.

I wish I had pictures of Vern and Coila's. It was a supper club on the lake. Dad did much construction there. But he also played the drums with the Ralph Easton Trio on the weekends. I remember Dad in his tux. 

I remember him when I smell sawdust. Hear Lawrence Welk. Or drum solos. Or pass a golf course, a past time he took up in his 60s. This week, we have received many notes or comments about how "We used to dance to Benny's music every weekend", or "Benny made our cabinets (or tables or bookcases or whatever)". I am sure there are many people in Spencer who have kitchen cabinets made by my dad who don't even know the care and artistry he put into them. But I do know they are level and square. And beautiful. 

We remembered dad this week. He passed just a few weeks shy of his 90th birthday. I got to be with him which I thought would be really hard, but ended up being a wonderful blessing. He had everything planned, ready, and paid for with the funeral home. I held it together through the service until our final song. It hasn't left my brain since.

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