Death of A Giant (A Tribute to Dr. Al Densmore)

I received word yesterday that my friend, Dr. Al Densmore, had passed away early in the morning and was now enjoying the beauty of heaven.

There are about 5-10 men in my lifetime that I would say have had a major impact on who I am. Dr. Al Densmore is one of them.

As I had about 10 hours to think on the road yesterday, I began to remember so many things about Dr. Al. Dr. Al was a Deacon at FBC Sweetwater when I was there in 1997-2001. I can remember Dr. Al's encouraging words to me immediately when I came to Sweetwater and I remember his sweet small voice peeking in to my office almost every morning (after he had been to the Post Office) to tell me to have a good day in the Lord.

For almost 5 years he and I led the weekly nursing home service and he would always close with "Amazing Grace". That song forever shall remain in my heart as Dr. Al's song.

He was a unique man. Military, Dentist, Historian, Musician, Artist, Gardener and much more. I think that is what I enjoyed most about the man--there was a depth to him that you could always count on and he was constantly learning.

I remember visits in his backyard to talk about "Mint" and how invasive it was to his yard (yet it always had plenty to share with everyone) and I remember the times I would pour out my heart and soul to him and have him pray for me.

This quote from a local historical book on the natives of Nolan county summed it up best for me about Dr. Al when I read it . He truly saw beauty and symmetry and colors to life.

It was his artistic side that I was most attracted to. As a painter of landscapes and horses, we asked Al to paint a watercolor for a stewardship campaign while I was there. We featured him and his art in the video and yesterday all I could think about was that opening scene where Dr. Al drives up in his car, gets out his easel and begins to paint the West Texas sunset that he saw for so many years. I can just imagine that God has given him full reign of heaven to paint and capture what he sees and his bright little eyes are shining. Dr. Al is one of the top ten people in my life and one of the ones I'll look forward to seeing again in heaven.

God loaned us an angel for these many years---Dr. Al, I'll miss you, but we'll meet again on the "Cloudless Day"


Erin said...

Jim, I ran across your blog when I was looking for funeral info for Dr. Densmore. I just realized that in addition to having a very nice eulogy of Dr. Densmore, you're also my old college friend Diane's husband. Thank you for this beautiful tribute to Dr. Al. He was very special to a lot of people.

Martha said...

Amen. You said it all so well. Thanks for saying what I'm feeling.

Mae Beth Palone said...

I saw your tribute to Uncle Al and wanted to thank you for your very kind words. He was truly the kindest man I ever knew. He loved his God, his gamily and his country and he will be missed.