My Grandpa Andy was an amazing person. He was a mine sweeper in WWII, but before that he was the handyman at the Camp Fire Girl's camp that my Grandmother was a counselor at. That is where they met and fell in love, and it is right up the road from where my parents still live. The camp is nothing more than a few stone chimneys and the lakes (some of which Grandpa helped build), but it is still there. I personally think it is very cool that my parents still live on the mountain my grandfather and my mother grew up on. There is so much history there.
I obviously didn't know my grandfather way back when - I remember him as the gentle person who always had ginger ale and a game of war ready for me. We spent a lot of time together. I loved to eat kielbasa and baked beans, and he loved to cook them (he also thought I was the smartest child ever since I could "read" the baked beans can - i.e. I knew what it looked like, but I'll take it).
Anyone who had the chance to meet Grandpa Andy has a story about him - whether it is about the Genesee quarts he kept on hand, the juice glasses he drank that beer from, how he would do his rounds after church checking on various friends, or various other acts of kindess. He was known to be a friend to almost anyone, and he saw the good in everyone. He could get riled up as well, but from all of the memories and stories, I hope I portray the same welcomeness and love he did. My brother has named his son after him, and I know he will grow up to be an amazing person, just like his namesake.
We stopped at Grandma and Grandpa's house last every Halloween - where my brother, sister and I would split up our candy and trade for the pieces we really wanted. We also went there on Sunday while my parents went bowling, and on New Year's Eve (we even got Grandpa to put a party hat on). There are so many memories made in that house, with both Grandpa Andy and my grandmother. I miss them both tremendously, but they are watching over me ever day, just like my Gram and the other loved ones I have lost. I know I am blessed to have the love and support of an amazing family, and I cherish all the memories I have. A big thank you to my aunt for giving me this chance to walk down memory lane!