Monday, April 20, 2009

A Real Hero

David Allen Stover
Husband, Father, Hero
April 21st, 1955 - May 14th, 2005

Every person who's lost someone close has dates and anniversaries throughout the year that will always trigger memories. Some are sad, some happy. The obvious date to reflect on the loss of my husband would be the date of his death. However, for me, it's always his birthday that is most profound.

We learned six days before his 50th birthday that his cancer was terminal. That just happened to have been my birthday, but even that isn't as painful for me as his last birthday was. I'll never forget planning that birthday party, knowing the entire time there would never be another one. He was in the hospital, so we had the "party" there, and invited all the staff. My father came, and Dave's dad and step-mother flew in the following day. Friends sent balloon bouquets, flowers, gifts. I made his favorite dessert and a big birthday banner.

Our three children sang "Happy Birthday," and we all pretended. Looking back at the photos we took that day, I see the love and pride in my husband's eyes when he looked at our children and at me that day. So it is that memory I hold close, rather than the pain and sadness.

Through these years since his passing, I have learned many things. One of the most important things is that if we don't allow ourselves to remember and feel pain and grief, we can't cherish the joys either.


  1. That was wonderful. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Dearest Deb,

    Weepy as usual, that's me. Your writing has that effect on me - especially when you write about Dave. I can't believe the amount of time that's gone by since his passing. My favorite memory of Dave is the picture of him in the steel bucket with just the cowboy hat on. :) It was an honor to be able to meet you both at RWA 2000.

    I just realized that you and I have "known" each other for over ten years. I wish I could meet up with you at RWA this year, but I won't be able to attend.

    All my love,