Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Andrew

On July 11, my younger brother Andrew died. He was only 19 years old, but he lived an amazing life. Andrew was born with Cystic Fibrosis, which he battled with until he was 18. On February 17, 2007, he received a double lung transplant and for the first time was able to breath without difficulty. The recovery was difficult, but Andrew pulled through and faught just like he has faught his whole life. For the past year and a half Andrew has had some ups and downs, in and out of the hospital, but he has also been able to do so many thing he has never been able to do before. He was able to do something as simple as swimming the length of the pool twice without a breath.
Before Andrew died our family was able to stay in a beach house on California over the 4th of July. We had so much fun spending time together hanging out on the beach, going to surf shops, having bon fires, watching fire works, playing rock band and much more. We were all so grateful for that time together. Dan, Hollyn and I have also spend lots of time with Andrew this summer since we have lived with my parents while Dan did his internship. What a blessing that has been for our family.
The day before Andrew left for Heber, AZ to hang out with my grandpa at his cabin he took Hollyn swimming. They had a special little bond together. She loved swimming with him, diving for rings, racing on the kick boards, and diving off the diving board. They also loved to play tickle where they would lay on the floor and take turns tickling eachother. I am so grateful to have these memories of my brother.
Andrew died unexpectantly in Heber, AZ with one of his favorite people, his grandpa. After years of hospital stays, surgeries, treatments, and pills, Andrew's heart finally stopped beating. Although it was hard, I know that he would have much rather died doing something he loved than being in a hospital for days, weeks or months.
We know that our Heavenly Father has a mission for Andrew to fulfill. He will be missed greatly. He was an amazing brother, son, uncle, and friend.
We love you Andrew!




12 comments:

Hall Fam said...

geri i have to tell you that you did an amazing job on andrews life story at the funeral. i think the funeral was beautiful and i loved the "last ride in the truck". we love you guys!

Becky J. said...

I wish I could have talked to you at the funeral. You did an amazing job. The whole funeral service was an awesome experience. I really felt the spirit, Andrew and your family have touched so many people.

Hugs, Becky

Caryn said...

I am so sorry about your brother! Nothing is harder than losing a sibling. You are so brave to share this moment in you life! I wish I had known earlier so I could have been there for you! let me know if you need anything. Love ya!

Amy said...

I wish I could've been there for the funeral. This was a great post and I bet Andrew will be missed so much. He seemed so involved in your life and seems like such a great uncle to Hollyn.

Johnson-n-Johnson said...

oh Geri! I'm so sorry for your loss. I know we are in Nebraska, but know that we are praying for you. I'm glad you got to make so many memories this summer. I'm sorry for the loss of such a good boy.

Caryn said...

Geri, I just talked to Meghan, can you re invite her to your blog, she can't get in.

meghanburkinshaw@hotmail.com

Megan said...

He did so much while he was here-obviously by how much you ALL love him. That's so awesome Hollyn could know him so well, and that he was here as long as he was. I love you!

Rachel said...

Geri, I was so sorry to hear about Andrew. I'm glad you got to spend time with him and make some memories for Hollyn. I wish I could have been there at the funeral, but am glad that some of my family could make it. I have so many memories of little Andrew. I'm sorry I didn't know the grown-up Andrew.

elisha and brett said...

Geri, I am so sorry to hear about your brother. He was obviously very special and had lots of people that love him! Our thoughts are with you.

Kleinmans said...

Geri, I just wanted you to know that you and your family have constantly been on my mind. I am so sorry for your loss. In my mind Andrew will always be this cute little boy with a huge grin!! He and your family have been such inspirations of faith and enduring to the end. I wish I would have been able to make it to the funeral, but I heard it was such a nice service! Hang in there and know that we are praying for you! p.s. Thanks for doing such an awesome job with the boys this summer. They loved it and are such great little swimmers now! Wish I could have been there to see them (and you!)

ProudMamaBlogga said...

Thanks for sharing; I'm sorry for your loss.

The Tate's said...

I am so sorry to hear about your brother. I never met him but he sounds like he was such a great guy and great uncle!!