With the Hinds side of the family living in Barnesville, GA, we probably had a little less interaction with them simply because of the mileage. Otherwise, it was a mostly nuclear family. The one part missing was Alex and Shelburn's father.
Robert Alexander "Sandy" Stowe, Jr., passed away Saturday. Although only 61 years of age, he had been ill for several months. When we saw Alex and Shelburn over the holidays, they told us he was in pretty bad shape. They both were trying to see him as much as possible as he had been moved to a nursing home in the NC mountains.
I refer to Sandy as the father of my cousins simply because I really did not know him. He and my aunt divorced when i was young. I do not know enough about why and really want to stay out of those types of family matters. However, I have some recollection of him stopping by their house to visit with them or take them somewhere. I vividly remember him taking Alex and I out on a sailboat one summer. It still remains the only time I've sailed. Ok, I didn't sail anything, but I enjoyed the simplicity of the wind being in control.
Everyone makes mistakes. I'm sure Sandy made a few in his life. I have too. At the end of the day children lost their father. A grandson lost his grandfather. It is an unfortunate part of life we all face.
When news like this comes across, I can not help but think about my own parents. I remember watching mom and dad lose both of their parents. It was heartbreaking but was a true revelation that this is what happens. We live, then we move on.
I imagine over the next several days Alex and Shelburn will be thinking about the fond memories they had with their father. They should. They deserve those happy memories. Hopefully they both know the rest of their family is thinking about them.