St. Patrick’s Day 2011. 


It’s hard to believe it’s been 13 years since I last heard my dad’s voice. It was a Thursday and I remember it like it was yesterday. 


Dad was in his last moments before slipping into a coma. He would eventually pass away on the 20th but on this St Patrick’s Day, he would quietly slip into a state where we knew he was cognizant, but not awake. In the room beside myself was my mom, my wife Barb, my daughter Mindy, and my sister Rita. 


I had this idea. I’d heard that people in a coma could still hear and feel; just not respond. My idea was to get the other most important people in Dad’s life to say goodbye over the phone. One by one I called his sister, my brother, my other sister, and my daughter Kelli. They each had the opportunity to say goodbye. It was heart wrenching. You could visibly see that Dad heard every word. 


The mood was heavy when a young worker named Sarah from the assisted living facility entered and asked if we would like ice cream. It was mint chocolate chip in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day. We were all in on this. 


As we enjoyed the ice cream, I accidentally dropped some on the floor and all the ladies in the room exhorted me to be careful not to step on it. It was needed laughter. Barb was holding Dad’s hand and said, “your son…he almost stepped on ice cream!”


Like Lazarus coming out do the grave, Dad sat bolt upright and exclaimed, “Did someone say ice cream?!”


Dad was an ice cream junkie. Startled, I asked him, “Yes Dad. Do you want some?”




Sarah came back with more ice cream from Dad. Barb dutifully fed him. He was like a lion who hadn’t eaten in days devouring a kill. 


When Barb – as only a mother could – said to him, “That was nice of Sarah; what do you say to her?” (as if here five years old!)


He answered with a wild look in his eyes…




That was Dad’s last meal and final word. 


And isn’t it what we all want? 


More money, more time, more chances, and more of anything we hold dear?


We have that chance now to create more. My feeling is that the “more” we create should center around relationships and discretionary time; more happiness and joy; more forgiveness and second chances; and more grace and kindness. 


Dad wanted “more” at the end but wasn’t granted it. I think in the end that last memory was the “more” we all needed with him. 


Don’t live life just hoping for “more.” Go out and find “more” each and every day. 


Keep Chasing Unleashed.


Quote of the Week:


“Be true to your work, your word, and your friend.” 

~ John Boyle O’Reilly, 19th century Irish poet

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