A week ago, I took an unexpected flight to my hometown Salt Lake City to see my Dad who was suffering from Lewy body disease. After several years of gradual decline, during which we saw the disease take its toll on his strong body and sharp mind, there were signs that the end was very near. In his dependable wisdom and foresight, Matt moved up my previously-scheduled Christmas ticket and I left a few days early to say goodbye to Papa.
I was given a full day with Dad. He was unable to open his eyes or speak, but he could hear and responded with small movements as I read to him from the newspaper and from his own notes and journals. Among these was a list of lifetime goals. Nearly all of these he achieved, including “live to age 70”. Dad died the next evening, in his sleep, in his own home, surrounded by family, at 72. What he did with those years was always impressive to me, but only after this week’s memorial services did his impact really sink in. Thousands of people were influenced by Bob Coles. Many of those in a deep, life-changing way. But before I say more, I’ll leave you with Matt’s excellent obituary which does much better justice to his legacy than I can. My own personal experiences and photos will come soon.