Remembering My Dad

It was a privilege to deliver a eulogy for my dad, who died on May 1, 2005 after a long struggle with Alzheimer’s. I’m glad I had the chance to tell people what a great guy and a great father he was.

I wrote an earlier post about how he cheerfully welcomed all the guests at his own memorial service and provided the entertainment as well. He would have liked the service. It was a celebration of his life, not a mournful remembrance.

Every kid should be so lucky as to have a dad like I did.

POSTSCRIPT 1: Here is an essay I wrote for the Minneapolis Star Tribune about my dad’s long, slow descent into Alzheimer’s.

POSTSCRIPT 2: A few years after I wrote the above essay, I shared an especially poignant moment with my dad shortly before he passed away.

Click here to see all my posts featuring my parents and grandparents.


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4 Responses to “Remembering My Dad”

  1. Kim Wencl Says:

    That was beautiful Phil. Kudos to you for being able to do it. I can only hope I will be that strong when the time comes.

  2. Phil Bolsta Says:

    You’ll find the strength, Kim. It comes when you need it to.

  3. Marla Says:

    I also lost my mom to ALZ in 2005. People who have endured this disease with their parent belong to a special club. You just cannot empathize until you’ve been there. I also spoke at my mom’s memorial service, and it certainly helped bring some closure to a painful period in our lives. I’m glad you were able to do the same.

  4. Phil Bolsta Says:

    I’m glad you were able to achieve some closure, Marla. As an Alzheimer’s daughter, I think you would like Lisa Genova’s novel about Alzheimer’s. It’s beautifully written and gave me insight into the mind of an Alheimer’s patient. I interviewed Lisa about her book because I wanted to help her get the word out. You can watch my video interview with her here:

    Here is the testimonial I wrote for her book:
    I wish I could have read Lisa Genova’s masterpiece before my dad passed away following a 10-year struggle with Alzheimer’s. I would have better understood and appreciated what was unfolding in his confused and ravaged mind. I knew that he was “still in there” somewhere, and yet . . . I might have been able to more compassionately accompany him, as Lisa so brilliantly put it, beyond “the choking weeds and sludge in [his] mind to a place that was pristine and still intact, hanging on.” This book is as important as it is impressive, and will grace the lives of those affected by this dread disease for generations to come.

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