The puzzle path of grief

June 2016 - Feature Article
by Marilyn Nutter

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June 2016 - Feature Article

In mid-December, my husband and I flew to Lewiston, ID, to spend Christmas with our family. Our plans abruptly changed on December 23, 2011, when Randy experienced chest pains and went to the ER. Doctors said he was having a heart attack and the hospital life-flighted him to Spokane, WA. We talked with surgeons by cell phone for updates as we drove two hours to the hospital.

In the waiting room, we waited for news, and I heard words that took my breath away. “He didn’t make it. I’m so sorry.” Three doctors gave details of their valiant efforts to save him. They left, and we wept. “What?” I said in disbelief. “What is this?”

We drove back to Lewiston that evening. We took calls and texts. Facebook lit up with posts of shock, love, and prayers.

For the sake of my five and seven-year-old grandchildren, we opened our gifts on Christmas morning. They had gifts for their Papa. Our puffy eyes and my granddaughter’s splotchy face told our story.

Changing flight reservations around the holidays posed a challenge, but surprisingly, we found seats for us all to fly home to Charlotte on December 26. When people heard our story, they were shocked:  a sudden heart attack… away from home… two days before Christmas…Christmas morning with children…flying back…memorial service.

Why did Christ die for you?   www.whyhedied.org

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