ForeverMissed
Stories

Love of Coffee

Shared by Nicole Martin on August 8, 2020
One thing about Phil (Big Papi) is he LOVED him a cup of coffee.  

One of the things I remember is when he first got diagnosed with brain cancer he kept complaining because while he was in the hospital the one thing he wanted was a cup of coffee!
Mom was nice enough to send me one of his French Presses.  So this morning I drink my first cup of coffee made in my new French Press.
I cheers to you Phil as this is a very yummy cup of coffee and I love my new french press. Just wish you were here to enjoy it with. Miss you Big Papi!

Serendipity

Shared by Janet Flink on July 17, 2020
Linda and I connected on Facebook through my niece a few years ago.  I admired her photos and her free spirit.  My husband Russ and I both started following Linda and then Phil, marveling at the car photos and the ocean scenes, but we never met in person. 
Fast forward to 2019, I’m finishing an out of town project in Gualala, a tiny coastal town in Northern California.  I decide to leave early and make the 2hour drive home.  Just as I pull onto Highway One, a car goes by.  I know that car, I’ve seen photos of it... I think - that’s Phil & Linda!  What are they doing here in this remote town?  I follow them into a parking lot and we finally meet in person.  
After much astonishment at such a chance encounter, we decide to stop at my friends house then go mushroom hunting.  Phil and Dibby bond instantly and we all just marvel at the serendipity of life.  We have had many happy visits since, with Phil and Russ supporting each other on their cancer journeys.  We will forever treasure the gift of love offered by Phil and Linda.  Rest In Peace dear Phil.

Holly Hocks and my Garden

Shared by Linda D Hellyer on July 17, 2020
When we moved into our apartment, we knew that this would be our last home together.  Phil and I would talk about everything and we tried to make our living space cheerful and full of love.  I worked on a garden for privacy and peace.  It gave us both.  Phil and I grilled out back there, I loved gardening and the flowers brought us joy.  I would show my new buds or an insect I saw with him, he always humored me.  I wanted to show him the garden in the last few days, but he couldn't move from the bed.  I took this video, but his vision had gotten so bad he never got to see the video.  After he passed away the nurse sent our friends Candice and Michelle, Noelle and myself out to the garden to gather flowers.  We cut the most beautiful flowers and she placed them around him.  He had my Holly Hocks in his hand. He was just as handsome as ever and that sight gave me just a little tiny bit of peace at that moment.  I will miss you forever Phil.  I have many wonderful memories, they are carrying me through what we knew would be a hard transition for me.  I love you Philly.

Cooking

Shared by Linda D Hellyer on July 17, 2020
Phil was the cook in our family.  He loved to cook, the kitchen was his and I stayed a bit fluffy around the waist due to this.  We loved to share our meals together.  Food was central in our house.  I rarely cooked and he preferred to be in the kitchen or at the grill.  This morning I'm looking at the kitchen and feeling an overwhelming sadness. Breakfast was our favorite meal and we made a point to spend time with each morning, just talking.  The last few months we got into a routine at 6:00 pm, to eat dinner and watch the Flintstones together, we loved that time together.  As Phil got closer to departing, he asked to watch the Flintstones all the time.  I think it reminded him of our dinner times.  We just stopped and spent time with each other. During the four years that he has been going through this, if he was feeling good, he was cooking.  I could see that his health was getting worse when he was not in the kitchen anymore.  We would laugh hard and loud over some of my attempts at cooking.  After he wasn't able to get out of bed anymore, he would coach me from bed in how to prepare meals.  My sister began getting us "Sun Basket" meals and they came with everything you needed to prepare meals. Phil loved these meals and looked forward to them coming.  I started to enjoy cooking, esp. because it gave him such pleasure.  Phil never forgot to say thank you, I'm proud of you or that was so good.  I think he was proud of me, he seemed to glow that I was trying so hard.  I am very sure he is with me each time I'm in the kitchen.  I miss you Phil.

When Doves Cry

Shared by Paula Watson on July 15, 2020
This one is a quickie....I'm sure there will be more.....but one of my favorite memories is driving down highway 101 into the city after a day of fun. We are in our truck, 'Blue Adventure', with Linda and I in the backseat, and Kurt and Phil in the front. The sunroof is open, and this dense fog is just rolling down the hill. Suddenly, Prince's 'When Doves Cry' comes on the radio and Phil and Kurt know EVERY WORD, and start singing. Linda and I laugh like crazy from the back. 
GREAT memory!

The Chicken Dance

Shared by Nicole Martin on July 13, 2020
07/13/2020

Well it wouldn't be like me if I didn't do a little razzing in my first post.  Big Papi I am going to miss razzing you! **Mucho Love**

So a long time ago when Mom, Phil and Noe were living in Eureka Springs, Ar we would go to the local watering holes and have quite the time.  There was always a story or fun memory to come out of these adventures.

But one of these fun nights led to some end of the night Chicken Dancing, ohhhhh you all know the song and dance, most commonly seen at wedding parties.

This one particular evening Phil imbibed on one too many adult beverages and while he did not actually join in for the chicken dance the next day when we were recounting the story of the previous evening for his foggy brain we added in that he got up and danced the chicken dance.  I think we had him convinced for a while, but he had some doubts, but even so we never relented to the fact that he did the chicken dance.  It was an ongoing joke/story for the years to follow. 

Well finally at the party of the century, Darin and I's wedding, we got Phil to actually do the chicken dance and Noelle as you can hear in the video was thrilled to capture it!

Love you Big Papi,
May you be happily chicken dancing in the sky....
-Nicole

(Sorry for the bad quality of video.  This was 2007 and Noelle still had an old school camera that when we digitized we lost some fluidity.)

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