William Sheldon Atwater
1915 – 2012
On May 20, 2012, my grandfather slipped into eternity at the age of 96. He left behind 3 daughters (including my mother), 2 sons, 18 grandchildren, 31 great-grandchildren and 5 great-great grandchildren. What a legacy!
In his younger days, people called him “Wild Bill.” My grandma must have tamed him because I never heard him called that. He was a rock for the family, a pillar in the community, and a founding member of his church. He had such an infectious laugh that everybody laughed with him. He loved to play practical jokes, drink diet Mountain Dew, watch game shows, and do word search puzzles. After he retired from Caterpillar, he drove to town every day to meet his friends for coffee.
My grandpa didn’t talk much, and I never heard him talk about his faith. Instead, he lived it. He valued faith, family, friends, and hard work. Without a doubt, he met his beloved bride at heaven’s gate last Sunday.
Life is short. Years flip by with lightning speed. Our years on earth are just a speck of sand in light of eternity. Our days are numbered, with a time to be born and a time to die. (Ecc 3:2 NIV)
I can’t imagine facing death without hope, without God, without the anticipation of spending eternity with God. The good news is we don’t have to face death alone. God offers us a life with Him. He has a giant eraser, bigger than you’ll ever need for anything you’ve ever done. All we have to do is say yes to Him.