Saturday, January 15, 2011

Edgar Martell Denny (1925 - 2011)

Photo of Edgar Martell Denny taken by my future nephew-in-law Nick Gilson
My wonderfully loving, compassionate, and intelligent father Edgar Martell Denny died peacefully in his sleep on Thursday, January 13.  All who knew him were touched by his deep wisdom and gracious example of unconditional love.  I am grateful to him for many lessons learned, traits passed on, and happy memories.

In recent years dad never really liked his photos, but I thought this picture taken at his 85th birthday party a few months ago did capture his fun personality. (Photo by my future nephew-in-law Nick Gilson; my apologies to Nick because I was also taking pictures that night and originally thought it was my photo.)

When I was in junior high school, dad graduated from the University of Utah Law School, being awarded the Order of the Coif for academic merit.  He finished law school in four years despite working 40 hours a week and having a house full of children. (Any guesses which one is future blogger Kalyn?)

Here's the Denny family a few years later.  This photo has gotten really faded through the years, but it's one of my favorites.  Thanks to a thoughtful reader named Meg who restored the photo for me and sent it in an e-mail! (Our adopted sister Vida isn't in either of these photos, so this must be before she came to live with us.)

My parents were happily married for over 50 years, and were loving companions through many years of raising children, church service, and lots of family evenings at home eating popcorn.

When my mother died in 1998 my father married Vera Holman, a lovely woman who was a great companion for dad, and they had three happy years together.

After Vera died he married Norma Noel, who lovingly cared for him for many years.  This photo shows them on the occasion of my dad's 80th birthday party in 2005.

There have been a lot of four-generation photos through the years, but this is one of the more recent ones with my brother Dave, his son Nate, and Nate's son Coleman.  Dad is survived by 10 children, 39 grandchildren, 49 great-grandchildren, 8 stepchildren, 29 stepgrandchildren and 32 step great-grandchildren.

The last few years of his life dad lived in an assisted living center, and I went there several times a week and cooked lunch for him.  Those meals with my dad will always be precious memories for me.  While I'm spending the upcoming week with my family, I'm going to feature a few recipes I've posted that were my dad's favorites. 

I love you dad and feel deeply blessed to be your daughter.
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161 comments:

  1. Kalyn, my condolences on the loss of your father. I'm sure there's lots more for you to share (beyond what you shared here).

    Share your memories of your father and I'm sure that will help you during your time of bereavement and beyond.

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  2. I am so very sorry for your loss, Kalyn. ((hugs))

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  3. What a beautiful tribute. My condolences for your loss.

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  4. I am sorry for your loss. He looks like he was a wonderful and very loved man. Saying a prayer for comfort and peace for your family.

    ~Lanie J.

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  5. So sorry to hear about your dad, Kalyn. I lost mine years ago, and I know how much of a void you are feeling. Hang in there.

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  6. That is a wonderful photo at the top. If this is a recent photo (which I am guessing because of the oxygen tubes) it seems he remained vital til the end. It is wonderful that you spent those lunches with him, and that you have such a large extended family with which to share your memories. Tough times I am sure.

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  7. Kalyn,

    Praying comfort, peace and strength for you and yours. Hugs to you and I look forward to celebrating the joys of meals you provided and shared with your Dad. Sweet memories that will live on.

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  8. Kalyn, I am so sorry for your loss. This is a lovely tribute to your father; he was clearly loved.

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  9. I am very sorry for you loss, he seemed like a very loved man, may he rest in peace.

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  10. My condolences to you and your family. Your dad sounds like a wonderful man and I would have enjoyed sharing your shrimp and macaroni salad with him.

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  11. Edgar Martell Denny was clearly quite a character and a wonderful man. Thank you for sharing a small piece of him with us. My condolences for your loss; I hope you find peace in your many wonderful memories.

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  12. I'm so very sorry for your loss. I'm sure your dad will be smiling down on you whenever you cook up the recipes the two of you shared.

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  13. Kalyn, you were a devoted daughter and your dad was blessed to have you! My condolences.

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  14. Kalyn, what a beautiful and fitting tribute to your dad. What a remarkable man he was and what a special relationship you two shared.

    Love and Hugs,
    Susan

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  15. I'm so sorry for your loss. I lost my father just before Christmas. I'm so glad that you have such good memories of your parents and also the things they taught you and helped make you the wonderful person you are!

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  16. What a beautiful tribute to a lovely man. Sending my deepest sympathy to you and your family. Peace and love to you all. xox

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  17. That is a lovely tribute to your Dad Kalyn. He sounds like a wonderful man and a very special father.

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  18. I'm so sorry to hear of your Dad's passing. It seems he lived a full and rich life and was loved to the end. What more can we hope for?

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  19. So sorry for your loss... May all your family embrace the best memories like you have in this sweet post.

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  20. Kalyn, so sorry to hear of the passing of your father; but from what you've told us in these few words, there's no doubt he comfortably resting beside your mom now and is at Home. My sympathy to you and all of your extended family -- what a wonderful tribute to him!

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  21. I am sorry for your loss. I lost my Dad in 2007 of Alzheimer's.

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  22. Kalyn,
    Your father sounds like he was a smart, caring and kind man. Clearly he passed all these qualities onto his daughter. Keeping you and your family in my thoughts.

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  23. I am so very sorry for your loss, Kalyn. (((HUGS)))

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  24. What a wonderful man he must have been. My condolences.

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  25. What a lovely tribute to your dad. How lucky you are to have been able to spend so much time with him in the last couple of years.

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  26. kalyn what a wonderful tribute, sounds like you and your siblings were truly blessed. my prayers are with you.

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  27. I am so sorry for your loss.

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  28. I'm so sorry for your loss. Very touching pictures and tribute.

    M

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  29. What a sweet tribute to your father, who sounds like a remarkable man. My deepest sympathies to you in your loss.

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  30. Dear Kalyn,

    You have my deepest sympathy and you are in my thoughts, Kalyn. What an extraordinary man! So accomplished on so many levels! How proud you must be to be his daughter!

    Mimi

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  31. Kalyn, I am so sorry for your loss. You were obviously blessed with a wonderful father.

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  32. I'm sorry for your loss. But what a nice tribute to your dad. It's clear you will be comforted by many good memories of time spent with him.

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  33. I am very sorry for your loss, you were blessed to have each other.

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  34. I'm so sorry Kalyn. This is a beautiful tribute to your Dad. Thank you for sharing with us.

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  35. Kalyn, I have read of your Dad so many times in your blog and could tell how much he meant to you. Your favorite recipe judge! I am very sorry for your loss and know all of us who follow your wonderful blog are praying for you and your Family at this sad time.

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  36. I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. You and your family are in my prayers.

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  37. That was so beautiful to read, Kalyn. As I said on FB, I really enjoyed any of your updates that included touching, funny, or sweet stories about your father. It's obvious to anyone who reads your descriptions that he was a wonderful father and an important part of who you are (a wonderful woman) today. What a full and good life he led. I hope all of your memories of your father will bring a smile to your face and joy to your heart. The loss is surely heartbreaking for you, my friend, but he lives on in your loving and beautiful families. xoxo

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  38. What a wonderful tribute to him - my sympathies to you and yours. I know he will continue to live on in your memories and your heart.

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  39. Kalyn, I am quite new to your blog and just wanted to give my condolences to you and your family. I hope you get to spend time with your loved ones and that you are surrounded by love and support.

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  40. My condolences to you, Kalyn. Losing a father is tough. Keep the memories near and dear. I am praying for you during this time of loss.

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  41. Dear Kaly, I am very sorry that you have lost your dad. Big hugs from me. Kirsten

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  42. Thank you everyone for all the love and support. xoxo to all!

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  43. Kalyn, I am so very sorry for your loss. It has always been a pleasure to read about your family, and especially your devotion to your dad these past few years. I know you will miss him, but his legacy will live on in your family forever. Peace be with you.

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  44. Oh Kalyn, I am so sorry for your loss.

    Clearly you dad was an amazing individual who lived his life to the fullest. This was an inspiration to read. Thank you so much for sharing it with us.

    Peggy

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  45. So sorry for your loss, Kalyn.

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  46. Kayln,

    I am so sorry for your loss. You had an extremely special father. Your tribute touched my heart.

    Bless you, Nancy

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  47. . I am so sorry to hear of your fathers passing Kalyn. I am sure he leaves behind a legacy of wonderful memories and plenty of love. Our yjpight are with you at this time of sadness.

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  48. So sorry to hear of your loss, and thank you so much for being here. I am trying SBD to lose 8 pounds and have been struggling. You make it easier every day. Thanks again. And my sympathies,
    Dawn

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  49. Kaln,Sorry for your loss.I lost my Mom just over a month a go.But I have a life time of memeories to keep her with me.I am also one of ten.Lots of good times to hold on to.

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  50. My heart is saddened at your loss of such a special person in your life. There's nothing like a loving Dad and I know the void you are experiencing as my Dad passed 12 years ago. May you and your family be granted an extra measure of peace and comfort.

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  51. I am so sorry Kalyn. Sending a prayer for you and your beautiful family.

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  52. A beautiful tribute to a wonderful father. What a fab family you all are. And a loving one too. Well done to you for being a loving devoted daughter Kalyn. I am so sorry for your great loss. May the love and memories sustain you as you grieve for your dad. Much love and hugs xx

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  53. Oh Kalyn I am so sorry for your loss. You father sounds like an amazing man and I know he must have been so proud of you. My thoughts are with you.

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  54. How fortunate you are to have had such a wonderful father and to have such great memories. So sorry for the loss of your Dad.

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  55. Kalyn, I am so sorry for your loss. I know what you are going through, as I lost my dad too on January 13th. He was 87, born in 1923, and died exactly 8 weeks after my mother passed away. I know how hard it was to write your tribute to your father, but it is amazingly powerful and I feel your dad's spirit through your writing. I will keep you in my prayers, and may God bless you in your healing.

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  56. So sorry about your father's passing but so glad you have so many happy memories. I came from a family of 6 children so know big families are full of great memories.

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  57. Kalyn,
    You have my deepest sympathy on the loss of your dad. What a lovely family you have. We have read a lot about your dad - so nice to put a face to a name. He was a very lucky man to have such a wonderful family and you were so lucky to have him with you for so long. Sending a hug your way...

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  58. So sorry for your loss! What a beautiful tribute to your father.

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  59. My sympathies to you and your family. Your father has a kindness in his face.

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  60. Thank you for sharing this lovely tribute with us (your readers). What an amazing man and what a truly wonderful life! You are such a terrific daughter! Isn't it nice to look back and have these happy, amazing memories. Bless your heart and your family - I will be keeping you in my prayers. -Melissa

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  61. Kalyn- What a beautiful tribute to your wonderful Dad. Please accept my condolences.

    I think I recognize you in the pictures- in the first picture, you are girl furthest on the left, the tallest one. Am I right. Thanks for sharing these lovely memories!

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  62. I am so sorry for the loss of your dear father. He would be so happy to read your loving memorial.
    God bless and comfort you.
    Pam on Long Island

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  63. Kalyn,
    I am so sorry for the loss of your father. I know you and your family will be comforted by the wonderful memories you have of him.

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  64. Thank you again to everyone for the nice thoughts. It does mean a lot to me. Nupur, you are right; in the first photo I'm the tallest girl and in the second one I'm the girl to the left of my mother with the very long bangs we wore in those days!

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  65. My deepest sympathy on your loss. When we lost our 20-year old daughter I found this quote from Helen Keller gave me comfort, "What we have once enjoyed and deeply loved we can never lose. For all that we love deeply becomes a part of us."

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  66. Kalyn, That is a beautiful post to Dad. You are a great sister and I love you.
    Val

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  67. I am so sorry for your loss of a obviously treasured Father.
    May the angels hold you while you weep and lead you on the right paths once your grief is complete.

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  68. I am sorry for your loss, take care, xoxox

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  69. My thoughts are with you. You're so fortunate to have the wonderful pictures and memories of your dad and family!

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  70. My deepest sympathy Kalyn. I understand how difficult it is to lose a parent. The great memories will always be there.

    Take care...

    Bruno

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  71. My sincere sympathy, Kalyn. Your dad sounds like he was a great guy. What a nice post.

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  72. Kalyn, I am so sorry for your loss. I will keep you and your family in my thoughts and prayers. Blessings...Mary

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  73. So sorry Kayln.....you are awesome and they say girls get their identities from their fathers.

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  74. Sending prayers your way. What a lovely tribute to your father.

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  75. What a beautiful story you shared with us.
    Sorry for your loss,Kalyn

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  76. Kalyn, thank you so much for sharing this with us. What a beautiful tribute. I can tell you love your father very much. You must have been the apple of his eye!

    I will be thinking of you and your family.

    Rebecca

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  77. I am so sorry for your loss.
    Your father will live on through the many fantastic memories you and your family have.

    Aloha,
    Judy

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  78. What a great Dad you had, Kalyn. It's clear from your writing that you loved and admired him. I'm so sorry for your loss.

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  79. I am sorry for your loss. Your tribute to him is beautiful and how special to have had lunch with him so often during these last few years.

    You and your family will be in my thoughts!

    Amy

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  80. So sad to hear of your dad's passing. My prayers go out to you and your big loving family.

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  81. Oh, Kalyn, I'm so sorry to hear about your father's death. What a remarkable man and what a remarkable family you are part of. There must be enormous comfort, having a large, close family - but I'm sure there will be some sad days ahead. Big hugs to you -

    Katrina

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  82. As a friend who dearly loves Kalyn, I want to express my sincere condolences to her for the loss of her father. For those of you who only know the greatness of Kalyn's blog, but don't personally know the greatness of Kalyn, may I convey to you the love and devotion I saw Kalyn share with her father. She has been a daughter a father would be proud to have. She has richly loved and served her father. From reading the obituary, it is evident that the example and influence of wonderful parents have impacted the great woman she is. What a great legacy, which continues through her and her siblings.
    "Cheers", as Kalyn would say. Laura

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  83. I'm so very sorry for your loss.

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  84. I am so very sorry for you loss, You and your family are in my thoughts. This is such a beautiful tribute to your dad.

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  85. Kalyn, how sad to lose your dad! Seems he lived a full good life. How intelligent to have chosen good women for his life companions. May you find peace and love in his remembrance. Un fuerte abrazo....Nati

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  86. Kalyn,
    My heart goes out to you and your family for the great loss of your beloved father. How lovely, your bittersweet tribute. It touched my heart and brought tears to my eyes.
    He's left behind a tremendous legacy- his family and the memories you shared. He must have been very proud of all of you.

    I send prayers of comfort to you and your entire family. He rests in peace.
    -CJ

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  87. I have heard it said that our souls choose our parents. Sounds like you made an excellent choice! Your father is on to the next chapter in his never ending life. I hope you can embrace all the love flowing to you in this moment and it will help sustain you as you mourn for this amazing man.

    God bless.

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  88. I am so sorry to hear of your loss. Praying for comfort during this time for you and your family.

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  89. I am sorry to hear about your fathers passing. Great write up. One of the biggest things that I am scared of is losing my father.

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  90. He sounds like a wonderful man and father. Praying for comfort for you and your family.

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  91. Kalyn, I am so sorry for your loss (((hugs))). That is a loving tribute to your father. I wish you and your family much strength and peace during this difficult time.

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  92. I am sorry for your loss. That just hurts so much. Take your time to grieve and be with your family...we'll be waiting here when you get back.

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  93. Kaylen, I am so sorry for your loss. I would wager that he is as proud of you, as you are of him. It seems the apple didn't fall too far from the tree in your family. Hugs to you and your sibs, Anna

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  94. Beautiful post. I am so sorry for your loss, Kayln. All my best to you.

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  95. Kalyn,
    My sympathies to you and your whole family on the loss of your dad. The fond and loving memories you all have with live with you always.

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  96. Kalyn,
    Thanks for sharing your personal story and the wonderful photos of your Dad.

    I look forward to seeing some of his favorites while you take some time with your family.

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  97. I am sorry to hear of your Dad's passing Kalyn - you frequently mentioned him in your blogs and it was evident how much he was loved. He, no doubt, was very proud of you and the rest of his family. He lived a fortunate life. Kate

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  98. My condolences to you and your family. Thanks for sharing your family pictures with us. What a wonderful life he appears to have had!

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  99. I'm so sorry Kalyn. You wrote a beautiful tribute.

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  100. Kalyn, I'm so sorry to hear about your father. It is never easy to lose someone so special, even if they have lived a long, wonderful life. It sounds like you were very blessed to have him as a father. I wish you well taking time with your family to honor his memory. My thoughts are with you.

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  101. I am very sorry for your loss. May your wonderful memories sustain you and keep you close to your brothers and sisters. Barbie in Tualatin

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  102. Kalyn's

    Thanks for sharing a little piece of your life. I'm sorry about your father; you can see the warmth in his heart through the look in his eyes.

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  103. Kalyn,

    I am so sorry for your loss. What a lovely tribute to a great man.

    Amy

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  104. A beautiful tribute to your father, Kalyn. All the happy memories are the single most important legacy he left. A big hug.

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  105. Bless your heart. Losing my dad would devastate me. I pray your family is comforted in your grief....What an incredible legacy he has left in your large family.

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  106. Beautiful tribute to your father. Sending our condolences.

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  107. this is a wonderful memory of his life and with such a big family i hope you can be of comfort to each other.

    i'm thinking of you.

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  108. I don't know you.... but I'm sorry your dad has died.. may your find strength in Jesus.

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  109. My deepest sympathies for your loss. Your dad sounds like a wonderful man. I know that there are so many fond memories that you will carry with you always.

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  110. Kalyn, What a tough loss for you and your family! I'm so sorry. May God bless you in the coming days.

    p.s. Are you the one playing with your Dad's cap in the graduation picture?

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  111. I am so sorry for your loss, Kalyn. What a beautiful tribute.

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  112. I am so touched by all the nice comments. Thanks everyone.

    Paula, I'm the oldest child (which would have given it away if you'd known that. So I'm the girl on the far left in that photo and the one with bangs next to my mom in the second one.

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  113. Kalyn,
    what a beautiful tribute. It's clear the apple didn't fall far from the tree. I wish you and your family peace, love and comfort in this time.

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  114. K-
    So sorry for your loss.
    My dad was born in 1921-reminds me a lot of your dad.
    Thinking of you and your family at this time.

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  115. What a wonderful tribute. Sounds like you have a wonderful family. Comforting to know we'll all be together again someday.

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  116. It is so wonderful to see the appreciation you have for your father. He will continue to look over you every day. You and your family are in my thoughts & prayers. You've got all of us blog followers supporting you <3

    Sarah

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  117. What a beautiful tribute to what sounds like an amazing man. I am so sorry for your loss. You and your family are in my prayers.

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  118. I am so sorry for your loss. What a beautiful tribute to your dad.Thinking of you!

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  119. Handsome man; beautiful family. I'm sorry for your loss, dear Kalyn. May he rest in peace. I'm keeping you and your family in my prayers for peace of heart and peace of mind at this time. Big hug,
    Paz

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  120. Kalyn, I'm so sorry. I'm thinking about you, your dad, and your family.

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  121. I'm so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your beautiful thoughts about your Dad and family.

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  122. So sorry for your loss. Losing our parents is tough!
    Lois

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  123. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. It's so hard to lose the ones who love you most.

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  124. I'm so very sorry for your loss. You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

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  125. Sorry to hear of the loss of your father. It's wonderful you have so many special memories.

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  126. I am deeply sorry for your loss, and moved by your tribute. He certainly raised a very classy daughter, and please treasure your memories. You are in our thought and prayers.

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  127. Kalyn, I'm so sorry for your loss. What lovely pictures you have of him and your whole family! My dad passed away on 12/15 and I'm still trying to figure out what's "normal" now.

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  128. My heartfelt condolences to you and your family. Your father's spirit will live on. Take care of yourself, Kalyn.

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  129. Losing your Daddy is so hard. It feels like everything is surreal. I still think about my sweet Daddy every day and he has been gone since 1997. My heartfelt wishes go out to you Kayln.

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  130. Dear Kalyn, thinking of you. Thanks for sharing some of your dad's story with us. What a life! :) Hugs from Maryland.

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  131. That is such a beautiful tribute, Kalyn. I wish peace for your father and all of your family. His legacy lives on in all of you.

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  132. What a lovely tribute to your dad, Kalyn. You know I am thinking of you and sending you a huge hug.

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  133. (((Kalyn and family))) heartfelt condolences and hopes that this time together with family will heal the grief in some small way.

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  134. I am so sorry for your loss. It sounds like your father was a great man, and that he will be greatly missed.

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  135. Kalyn - I'm so sorry to hear about the passing of your dad. What a wonderful tribute you have shared. He sounds like a very special man, who created a warm and loving family that lives on.

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  136. I came across your blog from a PCOS site. I think it is wonderful and you are an amazing tribute to good health and determination. I am 26 and I lost my Dad in July of 2010. He would have been 59 in December. It was sudden and without warning. When I saw you had lost your Dad my heart ached for you. I am so sorry and please know you will be in my prayers and your father on my heart.

    God bless you and your family.

    Tricia P.

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  137. I'm so sorry for your loss. We'll keep your father, your family, and you in our prayers.

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  138. So very sorry for your loss. He sounds like a wonderful man.

    Lisa.

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  139. condolences on the death of your father and warm wishes to you and your family - he sounds like an amazing person and it is lovely to see the family photos

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  140. Your father looks so handsome in his tribute in the paper today. Sounds like he led a full life being in the Navy and then graduating from law school while married with 10 children. Wow. What a great father. I see why you are so proud of him.
    Sending caring thoughts your way, Kalyn.
    from Wanda

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  141. This is a very sweet tribute to your father. It sounds like he left you with lots of wonderful memories.

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  142. Kalyn, my condolences on the loss of your father. May you and your family find comfort in all those wonderful memories. Our family is enjoying some of his favorite dishes at this time too.

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  143. Thank you again to everyone for the loving comments. It does make me smile to hear that others are enjoying the foods he loved so much.

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  144. My condolences on your loss Kalyn. Big hugs to you.

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  145. I'm so very sorry to hear this Kalyn! Donna and I both send our deepest sympathies.

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  146. What a lovely tribute to your dad, Kalyn. My heart is breaking for you, I know how much you loved and will miss him.

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  147. I'm so sorry for your loss, but what a beautiful post and pictures. Thank you for sharing.

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  148. What an amazing man!
    xxxoooxxx

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  149. Kalyn, my sincerest condolences for your loss. You wrote a beautiful tribute and are so lucky to have him for so long. Be well.

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  150. My condolences for you and your family, it is always painful to lose a parent, even if it's the "natural" movement of life.

    I send you a warm hug, you did a wonderful tribute to him...

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  151. What a wonderful tribute to your father. And what a legacy he leaves behind.

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  152. This is a beautiful tribute and so are his favorite recipes. I'm so sorry again. My Dad's just gone into a nursing home (6 hours away sadly) and boy is it tough. You're in my thoughts.

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  153. Kalyn, I am so sorry for your loss. This was a wonderful tribute to your father. It looks like he had a full life and was loved by many.

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  154. I'm so sorry for your loss Kalyn. What a lovely post. Sending you comforting thoughts...

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  155. Kayln,

    Just saw this. So sorry for your loss..your father sounds like an amazing man!..
    Shawn K

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  156. I was the mission secretary in Albuquerque when your father served as mission president. I loved my mission but especially the 6 months I spent in the office working with him every day. That was the highlight of my service.

    One day I asked him what his middle initial stood for. He told me, thought for a moment and said, "I never really like the name Edgar. Martell wasn't much better." This was said with a huge smile on his face.

    I've been digitizing my mission slides which is what got me thinking about your father. I'm sad that he's passed, but have many happy memories of him and Sister Denny.

    Alan Wareham
    New Mexico Albuquerque Mission
    1981 - 1982

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  157. Alan, thanks so much for sharing that. I feel very blessed to have had the parents I did; miss them both so much.

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