This guy Marshall, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

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Our family is so blessed to have you for a son and a brother. We are inspired daily by your heart for God, compassion for others and your love for sweet Tessa! Blessings to you today!

I woke up this morning and prepared these heart felt words for my son Marshall’s Facebook page birthday greeting. Then I started looking through photographs of this amazing young man and reflected on his life and what he means not only to our family but to his friends, his fellow teachers and his students. It’s amazing what happens when we slow down and reflect on the memories, the impact and the meaning of a life.

So many moments Marshall where you made me laugh, occasionaly cry, feel deeply loved, grateful and always proud. There have been times where Carol and I just had to pray and breath, all parents have experienced those times, and then sometimes I just held my breath. I will never forget that first piano recital when you were like 6 years old, you stopped during this little song you had practiced hundreds of times, you momentarily lost your place, I was sweating bullets, stomach coming up in my throat, you never looked rattled under the pressure of all those eyes staring at you, wondering if you would cry and run off the stage. Instead, you just trained those big brown eyes on the page, considered the task at hand and resumed your course and I felt your strength. You nailed it, and I was so proud.

We have had some incredible adventures together, exploring the back country of Wyoming on horseback, enduring the Wichita Falls Hotter N Hell 100 mile bike ride in the 105 degree heat, experiencing the 400 mile Oregon coast by bicycle, fly fishing everywhere from Yosemite, New Hampshire, The San Juan’s, the Texas gulf, the Smoky Mountains and a few places in between.

We have experienced some amazing mountain tops and also, some heartbreaking valleys, times where God’s breathtaking beauty filled us with his presence. Then there were those valleys, where all we could do was hold on to each other and just cry, experiencing together the emotions of loss that had no words. You were there, you showed up, you considered the task at hand and like always, I felt your strength.

Happy Birthday Marshall, I love you, your family loves you and we are all grateful to God for your life.

Marshall1 Marshall2 Marshall3 Marshall4 Marshall5 Marshall6 Marshall7 Marshall8 Marshall9 Marshall10 Marshall11 Marshall12 Marshall13 Marshall14 Coast of Texas Flyfishing August 2001 Marshall16 Marshall17 Marshall18 Marshall19 Marshall20 Marshall21 Snorkeling La Jolla California June 2002 Marshall23 Marshall24 Marshall25 Marshall26 Marshall27 Marshall28 Marshall29 Marshall30 Marshall31 Marshall32 Marshall33 Marshall34 Marshall35 Marshall36 Marshall37 Marshall38 Marshall39 Marshall40Marshall41DSC00663Marshall42

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