Today would have been Dave’s 35th birthday.
Yes, the media got that wrong, too. Remember this whenever you read something from the media – even when they aren’t making things up, using pictures out of context and changing faces on pictures, they still aren’t good with details. They subtracted years and didn’t care about months.
But we care a lot about the months.
We didn’t know how short of time we would have with him.
Every month was precious.
That’s one of the things we all loved about Dave, wasn’t it?
He made every day count.
He had the gift of making the most of every opportunity to have fun and create memories. You could count on him to be thinking up something to do or somewhere to go.
One of my favorite birthday party memories was his 10th birthday. He invited 20 of his closest friends – yes, even back then, he had a lot of friends – and we all went to a park. He had enough boys for all kinds of teams so they played basketball and baseball until it started getting dark, only stopping long enough to gobble down some hotdogs and cake.
A home Cardinals game landed on his 25th Birthday so we celebrated during the tailgating before the game. You’ll notice this was before the no-beer pong rules. How he loved his Cardinals!
35 years ago today, on the day Davey was born, there was an air quality alert for Phoenix. Lots of pollution in the air.
I remember looking out the window of the hospital with my new son in my arms wondering if it was wise to bring a new life into this kind of world – where we have to be careful breathing too much of the air.
When we look at what’s happening currently in our culture, there are probably some new parents wondering the same thing for different reasons.
But now I know there are much worse things than bad air quality.
There is a grave stone with my son’s name on it.
I go there every week – not because he’s there. I know where he is and he is happy there.
I visit his spot just to make sure that it looks good. He died honorably, giving his life to protect and serve others and I want his spot to reflect that when people stop. And the cemetery staff tells us that a lot of people stop to pay their respects.
I added something new this week. I’m sure Davey would approve.
A message to all of you.