An Ode to John E. Frawley

It was Monday, March 31, 2003, my junior year of high school. I had a full day of school, and during my chemistry class sixth hour we had a test. Our teacher told us that if we didn’t complete it in time we would be able to finish it the next day. I was one of those people who didn’t finish.

The next day, April 1, 2003, my grandfather — he was in poor health — was not improving. Expecting the worst, my parents let me stay home from school that day. But since I had a test to finish (and at that time actually enjoyed chemistry), I went to school for just that one hour.

While there, grandpa, John E. Frawley, one of the greatest men I will ever know, passed away. It was the first time I had ever experienced a death in the family, and frankly I didn’t take it well.

It was hard for me to concentrate on schoolwork for the rest of that year, to which another teacher once told me as a senior that I got “senioritis at the end of junior year.”

I didn’t know how to cope with his absense.

 
When I was young, Grandpa seemed to care more about my education than I did, often rewarding me for good marks on my report card.

It wasn’t until long after he was gone that I discovered how much he put an importance on my education.

Graduating college was one of the best moments of my life, and there was nothing more that I wanted than to have him around to see me walk across the stage. Not only in 2011 at Central Michigan University, but seven years earlier in high school.

He would be 89 this year, and I know for a fact if he were around he’d be proud of his children, his grandchildren, now great-grandchildren.

It’s unfortunate that we often don’t realize the importance people have on our lives until they’re gone.

Rest easy, Grandpa Jack. Miss you.

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