My father, Patrick Johnston, passed away December 20, 2011 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He was 79 years old and suffered from dementia. The last few years were extremely difficult for him and his family. I am his only child, and my parents’ 40th anniversary was less than a month before he passed away. His departure, while still sad, also was marked with relief, as over the final year of his life, he suffered more than was necessary.
As I sift through the various stages of grief, what stands out the most are the memories of my father, both good and bad. There are also things I would like to know, and I wish I had asked him while he still had his memory, but alas, it was too late for that even long before he died.
The Memories Project is my tribute to my father. I will post daily memories of my father here over the next year. Sometimes it may be just a snippet, other times a longer entry. A memory may be awakened by something I saw or heard that particular day. It may be a song lyric, or a photograph. I want to collect all of the memories and stories I remember about my dad, preserve them and share them with anyone who’s interested in reading them.
I hope The Memories Project serves as inspiration for others to gather and preserve memories and stories of their loved ones now, because you never know when it will be too late.