Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Thomas William Sachs 1943-2006

My father-in-law (Big Dave) and Dad singing oldies.

Jeremiah and Ellie with Pop Pop in the hospital.

Target with Dad!

Dad and Cord saying the Buck Island Pledge (It's a family thing)! We are very patriotic, needless to say!

Ellie and Pop Pop posing for a picture!

"The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit," Psalms 34:17-18 What a precious verse and how true it is! The Lord has been so close to me this past year. As he took life away, he created new life within me. Most of you had the privilege of knowing my Dad, for those of you who didn't, I am sorry. Hopefully I can give you a glimpse of the man that I so proudly called my Daddy!

My dad was a Godly man full of integrity, compassion, grace, and love! No, not a perfect man, and he would be very quick to tell you that if he knew I was putting him on a pedestal. My Dad was so much fun to be around and loved to make people laugh. When he walked into a room people were drawn to him. My Dad had a passion for Christ and would share the gospel with anyone. He was never afraid to tell someone about Jesus. He was bold, yet very gentle and full of grace!

My Dad was diagnosed with Colon cancer in 2000 and battled cancer off and on for the next six years. He went through peeks and major valleys. He had what seemed like thousands of rounds of chemotherapy. The cancer did go into remission for a couple of years, but came back in full force. The cancer eventually spread to his liver, lungs, and lymph nodes. The doctors did everything they could to fight this disease, but the Lord decided to bring Dad home for his healing. My Dad was a fighter, yes he longed to be with Jesus, but he had a lot of life left and wanted to be here to see his grandchildren grow up. In the summer of 2006, the doctors told us that there was nothing more they could do and for Dad to "get his affairs in order". This would be the beginning of the best/worst summer of my life!

I moved home for the summer to help take care of Dad. I was teaching 8th grade at the time and school was out for summer break (God's perfect timing). My husband is a pilot and we own a small plane. This was a huge blessing and allowed my husband to still do his job and fly home every weekend to be with us. The memories we made that summer I will cherish for a lifetime. Our family and friends were so amazing! Words will never describe how grateful my family was for all the support from the people we love. From the meals, to the prayers, thoughtful cards and flowers, the list goes on and on. I'll have to say that we lived life that summer. We didn't take any second for granted and we enjoyed being together. On September the 9th, Jesus took Dad home. The home that he would be for eternity. My Mom, Cord and Heather, and David and I were able to be with Dad when he took his last breath. I get really excited when I think about seeing my Dad face to face again. A friend of our family said to me after Dad died, "Isn't it amazing that you were holding your Daddy's hand, and the very next hand he touched was Jesus'"! It is amazing, he was finally home where he longed to be, no more crying, pain, sickness, or hurt. He was home!

I feel like I must tell you a little bit about the sweet memories I have as a little girl. One of my favorite treasured memories is Dad reading to me and telling me "made up" stories. I loved for Dad to tell me stories about a little girl named Tes. Dad would make up these amazing stories about Tes and how she loved her pony, playing with her "dollies", playing outside, and on and on. I would always say, "Daddy do you know Tes?", and always was the same reply,"of course I know Tes", "how do you know her?", "she's just a little girl I know." I loved stories of Tes and couldn't get enough of her. It was many....many years later when I finally figured out who Tes was...Tegan Elizabeth Sachs!

Another favorite game Cord and I used to play with Dad was "Monsters". There was something thrilling about being scared, yet safe at the same time b/c we were playing with Dad! Dad would go in room with the lights turned out and Cord and I would slowly get up enough strength to be brave and walk in. Dad would pop up and make a "monster" noise that I have no idea how to describe in words. Then Cord and I would scream and run out the door with Dad chasing us. As I'm typing this, it has occurred to me how psycho this must sound to you all. Anyway, we loved it!

Dad loved surprises and especially surprising his kiddos. One day Dad came home from work and asked Cord and I to put on blindfolds. He and Mom then proceeded to lead us all over the yard until we ended up sitting on top of a new jet ski. Cord and I freaked! Mom and Dad were so excited to see us so happy. Dad did this kind of thing all the time. Since Dad always gave great surprise gifts, it never dawned on me that he could ever give an awful gift. Well, he did just that...gave me a horrible surprise one time. Same type scenario, Dad came home from work and came in the house and called for me. He was so excited and said, "I have a surprise for you"! Oh my gosh, what could it be this time, my mind was reeling. I was thinking another jet ski, a new horse, a new ski boat, on and on my mind went. As I turn the corner outside, my Dad is standing there with a brand new garden rake!!! Yes, I said a rake! He was dead serious! I think I started crying. You see as much fun as Dad was, we still had to earn our keep around the house. We worked in the yard all the time....and my job was raking leaves, grass, and pine straw!

This was Dad's favorite time of year! He loved Thanksgiving and Christmas. He loved to be outdoors! He wasn't much on sitting still. He loved to be working in the yard, always fixing something, or riding horses. He and Mom loved to ride horses and they did all the time. As the holidays approach there's a pit in my stomach that aches for my Dad. But you know, if I had the chance to bring him back, I couldn't do it. He would never want to come back to this earthly home after being in his heavenly home. He is in paradise with no more sickness, pain, or disease! And that is comforting to me!

I found out I was pregnant two weeks before my Dad passed away. What a blessing to be able to tell my Dad. God's timing is perfect! David and I have been so blessed with our little guy. He has brought our family so much joy in the midst of so much pain. Thank you Lord for giving him to us! I know that Pop Pop would be so proud of him. He loved his grandchildren Jeremiah, Ellie, and Saddler, and was so proud to be their Pop Pop!

Even though I miss him, I find great comfort in knowing that we will be together again one day. Until then, I know my Dad would want us to live life to the fullest, enjoying every moment. But most of all, he would want us to glorify God!

" Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up. You will increase my honor and comfort me once again." Psalm71:20-21


Ashley said...

The absolute perfect tribute to Mr. Sachs! I can see him now - doing all of those things! A few memories of my own: him opening up the basement of his contstruction office for us to work on floats every Homecoming; his red truck that always drove those floats; him escorting you on the field for Miss Homecoming; him being such a perseverant leader at FCA - every Thursday morning; and the last time I saw him at your house - laying on the couch, barely able to speak, yet talking about how much he had learned in studying heaven and how excited he was to see it for himself. Know that he has many crowns as he sits with our Lord...

MaryMartha said...

What a great post! Thank so much for sharing...your dad was soo special and you always did such a incredible job showing everyone how much you LOVE HIM!

Ang said...

okay, can i shed anymore tears?!?!! i am soooo happy that i wasn't one of the "sorry" people that wasn't touched by your daddy! he will always be my papa sachs!!!

Milla said...

Third try!!! Tegan...This was a beautiful tribute to your dad...he would love it. It made me laugh and cry...what wonderful memories! I love you with all my heart! Mom

Kitty Brown said...

Oh Tegan, what a beautiful post. Thank you so much for sharing such wonderful memories of your dad.

Una said...

Wow!!! Your stories about your Dad are wonderful. Wish I had known him, he sounds like a beautiful person.

amber able said...


That was just beautiful!!

Love you!

whitney burrough akin said...

what a sweet and real tribute, tegan. i loved all the details. what a wonderful man your dad was. i can't wait to meet him one day.

Melissa P. said...

precious, thank you so much for sharing. it is inspiring as a parent to think about leaving a legacy for our children...your dad certainly set a good example of this! i will be praying for comfort and peace for your family during the holidays.

i am so glad to have found your blog and to catch up on your life! and i am glad to hear that you are in nashville (we are too) and i would love to see you and meet your little guy! blogging is addictive, but it is such a wonderful way to reconnect with people in this new season of life that we all find ourselves in, isnt' it??

blessings to you today!
melissa (rosenbaum) platt

Dena said...

I am so sorry for your loss - it is a pain that never leaves your heart - my dad died of pancreatic cancer 5 months before my wedding -It was a blessing just to have known him much less to have him as my dad! I know how blessed you are to have had the same!

Shannon said...

Thanks for sharing that! It was so sweet. What great memories you have to share!

p.s. I have read book 2. Super helpful!

Darby Stickler said...

What precious precious memories you have of your dad! And what a blessing this blog is for those of us who didn't get to know him on earth! What an incredible (and fun) man of God! I'm so grateful that you have the whole summer to spend with him! THanks for sharing your heart with us!!

Jonathan W. Gandy said...

You might not remember me, but we went to high school together (although I graduated the year after you). I recently stumbled across your blog, so I hope you don't mind me leaving a comment and sharing some memories I have of your father.

He had such a significant impact on my life while we were in high school, because I spent quite a bit of time with your dad every Thursday morning until the year I got my driver's license. He would pick me up EARLY on his way into town for our weekly FCA meetings. We would go to McDonald's for the biscuits and then Foodworld for the drinks. We had many conversations on those mornings that were very encouraging for a shy young kid in high school. It was always apparent to me that he was a Godly man who sincerely lived the Greatest Commandment. Of the few adults (other than my own parents) who greatly impacted my teenage years, your father was very close to the top. I eventually asked him to write a letter of reference on my behalf to Senator Jeff Sessions requesting a nomination to the Naval Academy. Thankfully, and I am certain in no small part of your father's, I received that nomination, graduated in 2002, and continue to serve in the Navy to this day.

My friend, Jon Foster, and I were also beneficiaries of your dad's generosity. During our junior year, he recruited us to come over and clean the horse stables on Sundays. In return he let us ride your jet ski and play all day at your boathouse. I always felt guilty over that exchange because it seemed like we were getting the better end of that deal.

I can't remember your dad without a smile. And I can't remember him being too busy to stop and listen.

I am sorry to have lost him in this world but rejoice to know that I will one day again see him in the next. (By the way, I loved your note that the very next hand he held after yours was of Jesus!)

God bless,
Jonathan Gandy