Death comes in many forms;
Death of an era, death of a marriage, death of your childhood, brain death… then there’s having a heart attack and dying in the flaming wreckage that about two minutes ago, was your car.
  I was notified yesterday that my ex wife’s grandfather died in a car wreck. He was a great man. A self reliant, good ol’ boy from Missouri. He was an engineer, who owned his own well digging company. Even in his late 70’s you could still find him out there, climbing the rigs to get things set up. No ropes, no harness, just… climbing.
  When I first met him back in 2001, I had a big black Mohawk and piercings all over my face. He didn’t even bat an eyelash. He shook my hand, looked me straight in the eye, and said, “Welcome to the family.”
  My ex and I had just gotten engaged, and I was nervous about meeting him. My grandfather had been from Missouri, and he was very vocal about not liking my piercings. So I worried that he might also judge me by all the metal in my face.
  But he didn’t. I did notice however, that he kept a close watch as I opened doors and pulled out chairs for his granddaughter. I wasn’t trying to impress him though. I always did these things for her. Needless to say, he approved.
  As we left to return home he took my hand and shook it. He said, “I think you’re an OK guy… I don’t care what they say about you.” He gave a smirk and a wink as he said it. I smiled back, and got in the car to drive home.
  Over the years he has asked about me through the rest of the family. Always wanting to know how I was doing, and what was going on in my life. About a year ago, my ex mother in law told me that he said he missed me being around at family gatherings.
  Jim… I have always remembered you fondly. You were always nice to me, and as far as I know… never had a bad word to say about me.
  Rest in Peace Grampa Jim.