By Jim Oates
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Where does one begin when speaking of someone you love?
Dan is the second in a line of four siblings: There was Margaret, Dan, Jack and myself, Jim. Like our sister Margaret, Dan was a giving person. Always ready to help us both financially and physically. He stayed home caring for our parents after the rest of us married and moved out.
Dan bought me, my first bicycle. Nothing in this life is free, it came with a price, I had to clean up the branches after the apple trees were pruned: I hated that job. But I did get the bicycle.
If it hadn’t been for Dan’s dream of being a farmer, Jack and I probably wouldn’t have become farmers. The three of us bought eighty acres together, mostly with Dan’s money. On this land there was a small house that we fixed up for our sister Margaret who was a single mom.
Dan was the best man at our wedding and was always there with Christmas and birthday presents for our kids.
Dan always had words of advice for his siblings that were not always accepted. This caused some friction and I was probably more at fault; I felt that I didn’t need anyone to tell me what was best. Not seeing eye to eye, we went our separate ways for a few years.
In 1999 Margaret passed away, and then within a month, Dan lost his beloved Georgette. Two years later I lost my wife. Grief has a way of drawing people together. Dan and I were reunited with a bond that was greater than when we were younger. In the last few years we were not only brothers but good friends.
In April of 2005 Dan asked Jesus to come into his life and save his soul. This is a decision that brought him much comfort. Shortly after this he told me that he had peace. Through his difficult illness, I could see that God had given him strength to persevere.
According to scripture, Dan is now in Heaven, and if he could, he would tell us that it was the best decision he could have made.
Dan is now in the presence of his Lord Jesus Christ.
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