Sunday, January 07, 2007
Here's a picture of my brother, sitting with his dog, Cliff. Many times he would meet his wife there for lunch. He loved Glacier Na'tl Park and couldn't wait to show it to me. Because of the terrrible fires, I had to cancel a trip to Glacier that summer. After his death, and a writer's conference that I attended in Denver, I traveled on to MT to see where he lived, his writing cabin and his wife, Slyvia. It was so beautiful that I could hardly stand it, and his presence seemed so strong. He was Deputy Superintendent of the park with a huge responsibility, especially during one of the worst fires in Glacier history. I met the Superintendent, his boss and close friend, Mick. It was very evident that they were close working partners that dealt with a lot of stress during that fires. They were responsible, for the park, surrounding homes, and many lives. The experience changed them both forever. While it was still beautiful, the evidence of the fire on the park was everywhere. We were escorted by two park biologist to a remote area near the Canadian border to collect Ponderosa Pine seeds that they were planted. When mature enough, they will be transplanted to the grove near the river in his memory.
I wish everyone could have known Jess. He had great wit that shown through in his 7 books, and in everyday conversation. He impacted my life as a steady father figure, never shirking responsibility to his family. He constantly read my writing, and showed me how to improve it, and encouraged me to never give up. I feel so lucky to have had a brother like him! I hope that I continue to write, but to also be the kind of encourager to my writer friends, especially to the ones that meet here in my home.
This year will mark the 5th year of my critique group. I plan to post a picture of his last book on a future blog.
His death was caused by the Hantavirus. A deadly disease contracted from the deer mice and, incidentally, is more prominent in MT and New Mexico. A very tragic and sudden death. I'll save that for another time perhaps. You can look up his titles on Amazon.com under the pen name of Jess McCreede.
Whether you or a writer or not, make everyday count for something. Pursue your life with enthusiasim and each day as a gift from God. Our life is as a vapor and will soon disapear...James 4:14
at 8:46 AM