Tuesday, June 3, 2008

In Memory of Dale

Hello friends and loved ones. This is Brian, Dale's Son-in-Law. As most of you know by now, we have lost Dale Glenn McDougal to a stroke Sunday, June 1st, 2008. In order for those who wish to remember him in this way, we have set up this blog so that, as a community of loved ones, we may communicate our feelings, tell stories of his life, and generally say good bye, each in our own way. We will also post information that is not easily conveyed through obituaries, etc. I encourage each of you, even if you have never "blogged" before (this is my first time), to stretch yourself by sharing your thoughts, feelings and experiences.

To begin, I would like to share with you a letter my wife (whom I could not be more proud of) wrote today regarding her feelings and experiences related to the loss of her father, Dale. Additional information will be added but again I hope many of you will add your own entries


I come to you today very very sad. I lost my dad on Sunday.

I was on vacation with my husband, family, and dear friends when my Mom called with news that my dad was in the hospital. It felt like the longest day of my life bouncing from buses, airplanes, and rental cars to get to the hospital. I didn't have to get there to see that he was gone. My heart knew it long before I walked into his hospital room.
My dad had a massive stroke. He also has hemophilia which is a bleeding disease that doesn't allow your blood to clot. With all strikes against him he had no chance for survival.
My brother, step-mother, and I were in complete agreement on what had to be done so Sun. afternoon we removed his life support.

It was by far one of the hardest things I have ever had to do.
Although I knew it was just a shell.... he looked as though we could just rip off all the tubes and he could just sit up and give us a big hug.....

I laid on his chest while he took his last breaths and prayed for God to come personally get him and take him home.
My dad was born with a broken body and he has struggled and fought to be here with us his whole life. He never once complained or put his burden on others. He Loved Everyone with all of his being. I don't know anyone as generous, humble, and kind as my dad. He was a Shining example of how you should treat other people. I know when he was here on earth Jesus smiled on him often.
Today he is in a place where he feels no pain, there is no suffering, and joy reigns.
He deserves ALL of that!

People ask me "how are you doing?" ..... It always feels like the right thing to ask but its rather a silly question. If you stop and think about it.
How would you be doing.....?....
We all have fathers and no matter how old we are we feel like little children when we loose a parent.

I'm sad. I miss. I'm remembering.

Somethings I've noticed though about how others grieve:
When you mad, when you say "what am I going to do?", when the rug feels like it getting pulled from underneath you..... all of these feelings are so valid ----
But when you have faith ..... it feels alittle different.

For me:
It's a little bit different.... when I feel the "how this effects me" feelings .... I quickly know in my heart that I'm thinking of just that "me" .... when I turn those thoughts around and think about my Dad the feelings change. I feel peace, joy, love ...... I think of his smile, his hugs, his laughter .....
I think about how I have No regrets!
My dad LOVED me. He KNEW I loved him.
What more do you need?

That within its self, is Gods greatest gift. and I know I experienced it to the fullest .....

I have great pride in my relationship with God. I see his light in the darkest places and I revel in his light when his presence is clear. My heart guides me in all of my decisions.
Where I struggle is right now ---
When Faith meets Humanity.

I want to scream Why -- but I know the answer
I want to think ... he's not going to see his grandchildren grow up ---- yet I know that's not true
Dad, I'm not finished with you yet ---- but this is not about "me"

I don't know what I "feel" because my human emotions are trumped by Gods grace.
The min. I am sad God fills up my heart like a tea cup overflowing

I feel blessed b/c of this but I still miss my dad.....

Love is complicated. God's love, parents love, children's love, spouses love ..... it has its ups and downs. sometimes its frustrated, sometimes it's soothing. It can be loud or soft. I can be fulfilling and yet sometimes feel empty. Comforting, encouraging, awesome and scary.....

So to answer the inevitable question "how are you doing" or "how do you feel?"

Well ---

I feel LOVED

Thank you for all of your thoughts and prayer.
They DO make a difference.

In my dad's honor I would like to continue doing what I do best and what I know he passed down to me --
I would like to Love on all of you the best way I know how ....
with all my heart!



Jennifer McIntire said...

I'm not sure if you remember me but I read the paper today and had to tell you I'm so very sorry to you and your family for your loss. I can't imagine losing a parent.
You're in my prayers.
Jennifer McIntire
(your childhood friend)

AnOldSalt said...

We knew Dale in high school even though we went to Abernathy. We share the burden of your loss and grief. You are in our prayers. You have written a beautiful, heartfelt tribute, Bami.

Dana Moore & Cindy Garvin Moore
(AHS '67) (AHS '68)

Phyliss Lutrick said...

I have known your father most of my life. I am from Acuff and my husband Johnny is from Abernathy. My first husband and I lived down the street from your grandparents on the Winke farm over 30 years ago. I knew Dale in highschool and not only was he very handsome but he had a huge heart. Your aunt Diane was a friend of mine also. I am so sorry for your family's loss. Your eulogy was one of the most inspirational pieces I have ever read. You must be a very special person to have written it. You made him very proud and I am sure he is with Jesus now. May God bless and keep you all the days of your life. Dale will live in your heart always. My thoughts and prayers are with you at this very difficult time.
Phyliss Thomas Petree Lutrick

speddy said...

The service was beautiful and so was the man. Dale did a lot of work for me. He put in floors, fixed chairs, even repainted a cabinet (though he said he didn't enjoy painting.) When he came over, we talked politics--and he talked about his family with great love.
One day I told him I'd like to adopt him, and he said, "You'll have to stand in line." Judging from the people at the service, I think he was right.
He was loved by all. I know there is a special place in heaven for him.
I pray that you be comforted in your sadness by the knowledge that he is with the Lord.
Shirley Peddy

Anonymous said...

I knew Dale through his brother David when we all went to Tech. He was a good guy then and from what I have read, he continued that trait throughout his life. I am sorry for your loss.

I learned of this through my good friend, Alan McMenamy, of Shallowater. He knew David and Dale from Tech as well. Together, we send our condolences to the family.

Russell Carter (rtcarter47@yahoo.com)
Whitney, Texas

Jena Pickett Kauffmann said...

Dearest Sally,
We are still heartbroken and in shock over the death of your darling Dale. His service in Corpus Christi was the most beautiful memorial service I have ever attended. Bami's eulogy describing her father was so beautifully presented, and her words about her father were ever so true. Dale was truly Jesus with skin on. Sally, please know that Kyle and I are here for you anytime. We love you,
Jena Pickett Kauffmann