My father passed away suddenly yesterday afternoon probably from an aortic aneurysm while driving through Texas on the way back from vacation in Arizona. I was with him for the first half of the trip, but had to fly back Monday for work. But my mother was with him when it happened. It was a shock because it was so sudden and unexpected, and he was only 64. But he had a good life and touched the lives of many people. And at least he died doing what he loved most – camping and birding with his family – instead of stuck behind a desk at work (it was his first vacation in 3 years).
The photo is one of the last I took of him – hiking up Florida Canyon in Arizona in search of a rare rufous-capped warbler (normally not found north of Mexico). We missed the bird, but after I got home I found that it was being seen at a park in Texas and gave them directions. Yesterday afternoon I got an excited call that they were able to find the bird, and then a couple of hours later he was gone… Please keep me and my family in your thoughts and prayers, especially my mother, through this difficult time.
For those of you who knew him and are interested, there will be a memorial service at 11AM at Chickamauga Presbyterian Church in Chickamauga, GA on Saturday, May 4 and a visitation at Wilson Funeral Home in Chickamauga tentatively planned for Friday afternoon/evening. Be advised that the annual Down Home Days festival will be going on downtown that weekend, so some streets will be blocked off, and traffic may be bad.
– Justin Wrinn
He was the 2008 Lodge Founders Award Member and a lifelong scouter, serving for many years as Scoutmaster of Troop 64. – from Greg Schwall