Friday, June 15, 2012

Gains and Losses

I know. It's been almost a month since I've posted. A lot has happened in the past few weeks. I moved to Virginia. I started an awesome job at Busch Gardens. I got all set up in my new apartment. And I lost my dad.

Four months ago, Dad had his esophagectomy and we were told that he was cancer-free. Then, a couple of months ago, dad started having pain in his hip and we found out it was bone cancer. They said that he might have a year left. Then it was six months. Then three. Then weeks. Then days. His oncologist had never seen anything like it, it spread so quickly and aggressively. He wasn't in much pain at the end, though, and I got home to see him last weekend. He died peacefully in his sleep on Wednesday morning.

So I just thought that I would share some pictures of my dad and end with a story of something amazing that happened tonight. 

Dad as a toddler. Probably around 1950. ^

Dad's senior portrait. Class of '67.  ^

Dad, my tricycle, and me. Maybe 1990ish? ^

 Dad and me by Seneca Lake in New York, last summer. ^

Now for my story.... Dad had built a grape arbor up on the hill last year and planted some grapes. Well, this year he didn't really get around to tending to it before he got sick again, and some big storm had knocked it around, and it finally fell completely over a few weeks ago. Today, I went up and re-built it, made it a little sturdier, and got rid of all the weeds that were trying to strangle out the grape vines.

After I got it finished, I took a load of tools back down to the garage and went inside for a minute. When I came back out, I started to walk up the hill and saw something brown moving off to the side. I look over, and there's a deer in the trees. 

I walked over and stood there and talked to her for a couple of minutes, and snapped some pictures. Then I backed off and just waited for a second and she walked out in the open and just stood there looking at me. I talked to her, took a bunch of pictures, and we stood and looked at each other. After a few minutes, she just turned and walked away.

I firmly believe that it was Dad telling me that I did a good job on his arbor. If you knew my dad and how much he loved deer, and if you had seen how calm and fearless she was, you would have to agree.

So... sorry I've been absent from the blogging world lately. As soon as everything has calmed down in my life, I'll try to be more regular again.

Rest in peace, Dad. I love you.

Gary L. Drum 1948-2012


  1. You are absolutely right, it was your Dad :-)

  2. This made me cry. You are right it was your Dad. He would be so proud of you for fixing his grape arbor. You will enjoy the fruits of his labor and the love he had for them.


To leave a comment without using one of the listed accounts, use the "Name/URL" option. You can leave the URL (website) blank, but fill in your name!