8 Years in Heaven
Happy 8th Birthday Baby Kevin!
I'm so curious to know how you've spent your last eight years in heaven.
We love you.
We miss you.
We are so thankful for the blessing you are to our family.
Dakota shares his memories of you below...
I remember my parents coming home from a doctor’s appointment with bad news. I didn’t fully understand what they were talking about and I assumed that it would end up being fine and work out just like it always does. And I especially felt like these types of things don’t happen in our family, it’s just something you hear about.
I don’t remember very many details between when we found out about him and when he was born. As time went on and more things were learned and discussed, I started to understand how serious it was and the reality of the situation. I remember not wanting to talk about it very much, especially with people outside of my family.
I remember the day that Baby Kevin was born, I was at school. I remember being called over the intercom that I was being checked out and my stomach sinking. The walk to my locker and out to the car was a long one, and I felt super nervous. When we got to the hospital, he was there, and people were taking turns holding him. All the grandparents and Tami and Steve were there. There were lots of tears and lots of hugs.
Normally I would try not to cry and I wasn’t into hugs, but that day I didn’t care, I couldn’t stop crying and the hugs were what I needed.
I remember holding him and not really knowing if he was alive or not. When I look back on this day I usually watch the video that Dad made a few years ago and what stands out to me most is that Grandpa Tom seems to me to be the happiest one in the room, he is smiling in most videos and pictures. At first, I thought that was a little weird, but then I realized that he was able to smile that day because he gets it. Grandpa Tom could see God’s hand in Baby Kevin, crystal clear.
I remember that we were given the option to stay home from school the next day if we wanted to. I took that option and slept in, I didn’t know what to do with myself and kind of didn’t want to think about everything that had happened, so I think I spent most of the day playing Call of Duty. When I went back to school, some of the people I was friends with somehow found out about everything that happened and put together a “sorry for your loss” type of card. I wasn’t expecting this, especially since I thought no one knew about it, I was pretty thankful for that.
A week later was the funeral, all the crying and the hugging came rushing back. I remember going to the funeral home to take pictures and pick him up. He was put in the back of the suburban in his casket and we headed up to Idaho with the whole extended family. I rode with Grandpa Dave and Grandma Linda right behind the suburban, I couldn’t help but stare at the back doors of the suburban knowing what was just on the other side. We got there and set up, Jackson and I carried the casket to the grave, everyone was in blue, singing Baby Kevin’s song, and letting balloons go.
Afterward, we went to the Dude Ranch Cafe. I remember thinking that that place was a dump, and I was super sad walking in. But everyone else seemed to lighten up a lot more, so between that, endless Mountain Dew, and the food turning out to be some of the best food I’ve ever had, I started to feel better.
Throughout the entire experience, my parents were good to teach us more specifically about the plan of salvation and how it applied to us in our situation. I didn’t fully understand all of it, but it did make me feel better, and it did strengthen my faith. Since then they have continued to teach the plan of salvation, and I have continued to learn about it on my own. Even though this was the hardest thing I’ve had to go through, the things I have learned through it have been priceless. I’m thankful for my Savior Jesus Christ and His Atonement, and that through Him we can overcome death and in turn be united as a family again.
You can read about some of the other children's memories below...
We are heading to Idaho today, where we'll have Home Church together at Baby Kevin's grave.
More about that tomorrow.