Thursday, November 24, 2011

Glen's dad

We’ve been thinking a lot about Glen’s dad, Carl Roger.  Carl passed away a few days ago at 82.

Glen and Donna’s dad was a character. He was an adventurer, moving from farming in Saskatchewan to the brand new town of Kitimat, BC, built by ALCAN to smelt aluminum. He hunted, fished; he was a star hockey player on the local team. He was a fireman and later became a fire chief. Dad retired early to live on a houseboat on Shuswap Lake in Salmon Arm where he continued to hunt and fish and charm anyone who knew him.

Until he was 74, Carl lived a fulfilled life. He was funny, intelligent, stubborn, and opinionated and the life of any family gathering or party. He was the local handyman – he could fix anything. He built the most wonderful toys for his grandchildren – playhouses, kitchen appliances, ride on trains, rocking horses, a boat with an actual outboard engine. Not everything was a success - once he burned down our patio when a fish-smoker malfunctioned. He blamed Glen.

At 74 he suffered a devastating stroke that took away his independence. He spent 8 long years in care – and, with the luck of the draw with the Roger family genes – his stroke was augmented with dementia.

So his 8 years in care were uncomfortable and undignified. Every once in a while he would get into an argument with the staff when he came up with a new, ingenious way to make his life easier. “Drill a hole in the wall, attach 3 feet of rope and then I’ll be able to use my teeth to help steady me when I try to stand up!” The staff, of course was worried about the wall but his teeth were too far-gone to worry about.

So we experience mixed emotions with the passing of Glen’s dad. We celebrate the heroic, adventurous life he lived, and we sigh with relief that he is no longer uncomfortable and humbled by his condition.

Caught a huge mahi today, Dad! Must have been 15 pounds!

Carl and Glen - 1955

Fire Chief Carl - 1967

Glen, Carl and Brad celebrating Carl's 80th


  1. Beautifully written, brings tears, how blessed he was to have such a wonderful family and fulfilling life. Hope we can all live so long as to enjoy a great-grandchild. Hope the tuna was good on the grill!
    Larry & Linda

  2. Enjoyed reading this :) and learning about Glen's Dad. He sounds like he was a heck of a guy. We know he did a wonderful job as a family man as evidenced in his son Glen. Thanks for sharing and mahi! mmmmmmmmm wish we could all share in that. Hoping we get to catch one this year. Still have the hula skirt Pam made us - hoping it's a lucky charm when we do our crossing :)

  3. We are saddened by the loss of your Father, yet feel his relief from the bounds of the stroke. We both have lost or parents and it is not an easy aspect of life. Thank you for sharing these beautiful photos...
    Hayden and Radeen


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