Bill and I have recently completed one very difficult week. First we celebrated with the Dayton High School Class of 2012 as they graduated on Saturday, June 2. Then we attended the baccalaureate service for the Waitsburg Class of 2012 on Thursday, June 7--the second anniversary of Andrew's death. Then Friday, June 8th we said good-bye to the WHS Class of 2012. We did all of that without our Andrew.
Andrew began his education in Waitsburg with Zach, Chris, Jeff, Ronnie, Justin, Jessica, and Kayla. He stayed with these kids until the end of second grade.
Then I took a year off and Andrew began third grade at Dayton Elementary School. It was a tough year--so many groups are already formed by this grade--but Andrew continued on with these kids until the day he died.
So this past seven days we celebrated the lives of young men and women who were an important part of our son's lives. They will go on to study important things, marry their best friends, become parents of wonderful little people. And our son will be forever sixteen years old.
The important milestones that have a specific date have all been survived--First day of Senior Year...Senior Night....Graduation. Now is really the hardest part. We will never see our son graduate from college or separate from the military. We will never dance at his wedding or hold the son or daughter of our son. (Big sigh).
However, we will continue to celebrate the lives of those who were an important part of his. We will see college gradutions. We will attend weddings. We will give gifts to the sons and daughters of Andrew's friends.
We will never get over Andrew's death. However, we do get through the little events in life that make up our lives. So congratulations to the Class of 2012. To those who passed through his life--Cheyenne, Tanner, Lindsay, Jacob--and to those who were a part of his life at the end---Colleen, Jacob, Garett, Colton, Hayden, Carter, Joey, Kroft, Alex, Abby, Molly, Anita, April, Caitlyn, Chase, Paisley, Brandon, Justin, Adam, Blake, Nicole, Keisha, Gabe, Leighla, Ashley, Derek, Austin, Timmy, Danica, Shelby, Samura, and Darci.
It's been a joy watching you grow into young men and young women. We are excited to see all the places you go.
~Andrew's Mom and Dad